A Brown era for public service reform? March 26, 2008

Chris Leslie, Director, NLGN Public Servant Subtly and without great fanfare there are changes afoot in the Government’s approach to public service reform. Alastair Darling’s first Budget speech did not dwell on the details but the associated Red Book papers outlined a quickening of pace towards the goals of value for money and policy creativity. […]

You’ve been quango’d: is Yorkshire’s voice really being heard? February 15, 2008

Chris Leslie, Director, NLGN Yorkshire Post Is it fair that two London boroughs with a population of 240,000 have more influence on the boards of this country’s quangos than the entire county of Yorkshire (population 5.1million)? You may not realise it, but power and decision-making in the UK isn’t only exercised through the House of […]

How big is our Ambition? February 11, 2008

Dick Sorabji, Duputy Director, NLGN Policy Review This is the first year since 2003 that local government has not been waiting for Whitehall to deliver the next big step in devolution. Last year we waited for the final Lyons report. In 2006 we waited for the Local Government White Paper. In 2005 it was Lyons […]

The next stage of public service improvement February 1, 2008

Dick Sorabji, Deputy Director, NLGN epolitix.com For ten years government has increased spending on public services while the civil service has delivered reforms to management and accountability. s a result public expectations have been transformed. As NLGN explain in Changing Whitehall’s DNA government cannot meet these higher expectations unless the culture and working assumptions of […]

Cracking the Code January 25, 2008

Dick Sorabji, Deputy Director Public Finance A decade of reform and growth in public services has transformed public expectations. Basic services delivered in silos are no longer enough, people expect solutions designed to fit their lives; they want to feel empowered, not managed. Whitehall is now the major barrier to these aspirations. The problem is […]

Empower councils to tackle congestion December 18, 2007

Nigel Keohane, Researcher, NLGN Transport Times The government’s recent policy paper Towards a Sustainable Transport System has put urban congestion at the forefront of its agenda. It is not hard to see why. Without appropriate action, by 2025 there will be an extra 5.7 million cars on the roads and 30% more congestion. Conversely, the […]

Reading the Humpty Dumpty concordat December 17, 2007

Dick Sorabji, Deputy Director Guardian Unlimited “When I use a word it means just what I choose it to mean,” said Humpty Dumpty, and so it may be with the concordat signed by the chairman of the Local Government Association, Sir Simon Milton, and the secretary of state, Hazel Blears, this week. With those signatures […]

Abolishing Police Authorities December 7, 2007

Dick Sorabji, Deputy Director, NLGN Public Finance As Sir Ronnie Flanagan completes his review of policing he should recommend abolition of Police Authorities moving their powers to elected council leaders. Greater accountability is one of Flanagan’s four themes. It is the golden thread that will help to deliver the other three; reducing bureaucracy, improving neighbourhood […]