Magazine article Public Finance

Public, Not Civil, Service Says Bichard

Magazine article Public Finance

Public, Not Civil, Service Says Bichard

Article excerpt

The civil service should be replaced by a new organisation embracing all those involved in the management of the public sector, former top civil servant Sir Michael Richard has suggested.

'The term "civil service" was coined to distinguish it from the military, so maybe it has now served its purpose,' Bichard writes in an article in the first issue of Solace Foundation Imprint.

The publication was launched at last week's annual conference of the Society of Local Authority Chief Executives and Senior Managers in Edinburgh.

Bichard, who left the civil service in 2001, having been permanent secretary at the then Department of Education and Employment, put forward his proposal as one of a series of initiatives aimed at changing the way public services are managed. The current reform programme, he claims, is 'falling short'.

He proposes the establishment of a public service rather than a civil service so that all those who are employed to provide public services form part of the one system with the greater mobility that will bring'.

He points out that a decision was taken to maintain a unified service when the devolved administrations were established to encourage mobility. …

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