Magazine article Public Finance

Civil Servants Are Stuck in the Past, Says NLGN

Magazine article Public Finance

Civil Servants Are Stuck in the Past, Says NLGN

Article excerpt

Public sector managers must abandon the outmoded' style of the twentieth-century civil service if public services are to face up to new challenges, a local government think-tank has said.

In a pamphlet published on September 4, Chris Leslie, director of the New Local Government Network, said rising public expectations and increasingly complex services were placing a strain on existing structures.

'The civil service has rested on withered laurels for too long. Defending closed procedures for those employed in senior positions and artificially insisting on outdated lines of vertical accountability are practices that have had their day he said.

In the paper, Managing delivery: new public service architecture/or the twenty-first century, Leslie argued that there were four core pillars of modern public services.

The first was that factors driving improvement differed depending on the type of service, with citizen and political power and new technology becoming as important as choice and contestability.

'Government must analyse each line of public service activity and recognise that sometimes greater consumer choice will be needed, but in other cases tapping into professional goodwill might be a better means of achieving improvement,' he said. …

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