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Tag Archives for: "Whitehall"

The case for a qualified Civil Service

Without effective policy deliberation, the Civil Service will struggle to do anything well. Professor Colin Talbot makes the case for postgraduate qualifications for the Civil Service Policy Profession. Since the introduction of ‘Professional Skills for Government’, we have had a defined group within the Civil Service known as the ‘Policy Profession’. Although the ‘Professional Skills [...]
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Breaking the Rules and Paying the Price: the lessons of Tony Benn, Cabinet Minister

Tony Benn found that without the help of officials, having radical ideas as a minister didn’t get him very far. On the day the veteran MP is laid to rest, Dave Richards and Martin Smith reflect on their interviews with Benn, his Cabinet colleagues and officials. Obituaries of Tony Benn considered his roles as campaigner, [...]
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The last thing Whitehall needs is a Chief Financial Officer

It has been announced that the Treasury is to create a new chief financial officer role for central government. Professor Colin Talbot argues this is simply another impressive-sounding but ill-conceived attempt to quickly fix a complex problem. The coalition’s latest wheeze is to create a new government Chief Financial Officer, similar to the position found [...]
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Scrutinising the cost of party policies; a good idea in principle but…

Recently in Manchester three key national figures discussed how to improve the scrutiny of how British government spends its money: Margaret Hodge MP (Lab), chair of the Public Accounts Committee (PAC), Bernard Jenkin MP (Con), chair of the Public Administration Select Committee (PASC); and Robert Chote, chair of the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR). The session [...]
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The OBR and Scrutinising Public Money and Policies: Why We Need a Parliamentary Budget Office

Ed Balls, the shadow chancellor, has declared he’d like the Office of Budget Responsibility to assess Labour’s tax and spend policies before the next election. Robert Chote, the head of the OBR, and Andrew Tyrie, the Conservative chair of the Treasury select committee, have both said they think this could be a good thing. Others [...]
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