public sector reform Archive

Have we outgrown Yes, Minister?

The failings of ministers and their offices ensure continuing bureaucratic failure. That the political class across all political parties sees this as normal and acceptable is an important reason that it is losing legitimacy.

Evidence of the New Divide

So the Queensland ALP and media go in hard on Premier Newman over token public sector cuts. Net result: zero. Two party preferred remains around 60-40. That the Qld LNP have held their vote in the face of such an attack augurs well. Token cuts they have been too. As Judith Sloan points out regarding […]

Interesting Idea, Lousy Source

Voters don’t realise that electing a new government has the limited effect of changing about eight people in a single Minister’s office, who may oversee 15,000 entrenched public servants. So Godwin Grech’s suggestion  of a post-election spill of all SES-level public servants is worth considering. Pity that coming from him it undermines its own argument […]

Bigger Impact: Public Sector Costs or Flexibility?

In the aftermath of the recall election in Wisconsin – driven by public sector unions opposing Governor Walker’s aggressive reforms – Reihan Salam discusses the lessons from that state and fellow-reforming state Indiana. The post discusses insights from Josh Barro and Stephen Smith  (on transport union rules, well worth reading), as well as Governor Daniels […]

Sunlight A Starting Point for Council And Public Sector Reform

When I asked Leichhardt Council (NSW) to respond to questions about performance and constantly received the answer “We do not collect that information”, it became obvious that the Sunlight Test applies to performance management as much as to unethical behaviour. The Sunlight Test (sometimes Sunshine Test), originally defined by US Supreme Court Justice Brandeis in […]

France As Perfect Laboratory- More’s The Pity For Its People

Today I had the misfortune to read the French business daily, Les Echos. It was a stretch for my French, but oddly enough, the higher the language level, the easier it is. The misfortune was to discover, in detail, the first steps of the Hollande government. If you thought that the Rudd government’s hardening of […]

France As Perfect Laboratory – More’s The Pity For Its People

Today I had the misfortune to read the French business daily, Les Echos. It was a stretch for my French, but oddly enough, the higher the language level, the easier it is. The misfortune was to discover, in detail, the first steps of the Hollande government. If you thought that the Rudd government’s hardening of […]

The Problem Is Austerity For Thee, Not For Me

Much as David Uren talks sense, in his Anzac Day Oz piece I can’t help but feel there is a core point he doesn’t see. The thrust of his article is that the electorate won’t wear cutbacks, especially when the case for it is abstract and distant from their lives. Across the world, governments are […]

Hockey Kicks Over The Too-Hard Basket

Set aside the question of short term political impact. Joe Hockey’s speech  to the Institute for Economic Affairs is welcome and long overdue on the issues alone. And when I say overdue, I mean decades overdue for anyone with an historical eye and economic understanding. It is only now, after European and American financial failures […]

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