Webinar: Civil Service Reform: Political Vandalism or Regeneration
Date And Time
Wed, 19 August 2020
11:00 – 11:45 BST
In conversation with William Wragg MP, Chair of the Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Select Committee & James Wharton, former Minister for the Northern Powerhouse and Local Growth.
Covid-19 and Brexit coupled with the Government’s levelling up agenda has precipitated a comprehensive restructure of Whitehall. Proponents of this reform regard the civil service as inflexible, bureaucratic, and inefficient. Yet, others have claimed this ‘war’ is destined to fail, and is a flagrant power grab by No.10.
At the Ditchley Annual Lecture, Michael Gove echoed concerns about an increasingly fragile global landscape coupled with ‘a deep sense of disenchantment’ for our political system. How should we overcome this? To which Gove responds: ‘if this Government is to reform so much, it must also reform itself.’
We have already seen the Department for International Development close, rumours surrounding parts of the civil service being moved up North abuzz and senior leadership figures, including Sir Mark Sedwill moved on. Further wide-reaching change is inevitable.
In characteristic fashion, Dominic Cummings has promised a ‘hard rain is coming’ – with intentions to create a ‘smaller, more focused and more elite centre’. But what could this actually mean in reality? Will this Whitehall revolution end in disaster? Or will it bring forward a much-needed regeneration of Government machinery at a critical juncture in the UK’s history?
William Wragg MP who chairs the Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Select Committee mandated to examine constitutional issues and the quality and standards of administration provided by Civil Service departments, joins James Wharton, former Minister for Local Growth and the Northern Powerhouse and for International Development and current Public & Corporate Affairs Chairman at Hume Brophy, in conversation to provide their unique insight and perspective into the future of the civil service and how it could impact your business.
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Please note that this event will be held under the Chatham House Rule.
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