Scholars have, for decades, suggested that organisational amnesia can negatively impact the effectiveness of government agencies. So why do they forget? Maria Katsonis has summarised the findings of Alastair Stark (University of Queensland) for why public institutions may be unable - or unwilling - to access and/or use past experiences to help deliver better public outcomes.Read More
Climate change is back on the political agenda and public support for action on climate change is at its highest level since 2007. But can we expect our political institutions to be able to respond in the time and scale needed given their past failures? Rather than merely policy reform do we need to reform the system of government itself? In today’s post Celia Green and Andrew Joyce discuss how cognitive science research could be used in the redesign of our political institutions to enable better decision making processes.Read More
As long as the richest and most powerful have the greatest influence over national policy, the interests of our communities will be poorly reflected in many areas of national policy making, writes Community Council for Australia CEO David Crosbie.Read More
Since Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s rejection of the 2017 Statement from the Heart, demands for a treaty process across the country have accelerated state-based moves, including in Victoria and the Northern Territory. In this piece Gaynor MacDonald argues the enthusiasm for treaties at the state and territory level is misplaced and that while local treaty action may be a symbol of goodwill, it is the very foundation of the Australian Constitution that must be changed.Read More
The concept of “stewardship” keeps coming up in a wide range of contexts, suggesting it is capable of broad application to achieve many outcomes. In this article Katie Moon, Dru Marsh, Helen Dickinson & Gemma Carey examine how we can meaningfully identify stewards, and understand their role in contemporary public policy.Read More
Public servants should at least be aware of the human rights treaties to which Australia is party and the obligations they entail, says Gillian Triggs — and many do want to know how to do their jobs better. David Donaldson writes for The MandarinRead More
The Attorney-General and Solicitor-General's office have been locked in a high stakes political battle over the provision of advice to the Federal Government. In this post, Jennifer Duxbury (@duxburyjen) at the Institute for Governance and Policy Analysis at the University of Canberra, asks, what is the relationship between law and politics in our democracy? This post originally appeared on The Policy Space.Read More
In August 2016 the Department of Employment released the first Star Ratings for service providers under the new employment services regime. The payment structure for providers, as argued by the Employment Minister, Michaelia Cash, is ‘more clearly tied to achieving sustained employment outcomes, with outcome payments heavily weighted towards placing the most disadvantaged people into employment.’ In this post, Kate O’Hara from JobVoice – an independent service operated by Social Security Rights Victoria – helps us understand the Star Ratings basics for jobseekers.Read More
As the federal election looms in Australia, the track records of both Coalition and ALP governments of fulfilling their election promises are under scrutiny. Sometimes, a promise gets lost or falls short in implementation. Todays’ post by Professor Christina Boswell and Dr Eugenia Rodrigues provides lessons from the UK on how policy can be reinterpreted, distorted or even subverted when applied at a local level or across different arms of government.Read More
"…the government’s express goals of innovative service delivery and improved outcomes for service users have actually been hindered as a result of the way the tendering process was designed and executed."
Recent federal funding cuts and tendering processes have created much concern for the community sector and the communities they work with. That's been particularly so for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities under this years Indigenous Advancement Strategy (which Indigenous leader Noel Pearson this week rated at less than 2 out of 10 for reform).
In the post below, Victorian Council of Social Service (VCOSS) Policy Advisor Brooke McKail looks at some of the lessons to be learnt. Her article is published in the latest edition of Insight, the VCOSS member magazine.Read More
Civil Servants have significant influence on the lives of the individuals they govern. Yet we have little knowledge as to how Civil Servants themselves are governed.
Mark Jarvis has been conducting research to understand how civil servants are held to account. Whilst there is a lot being done well, Jarvis identifies ways in which civil service accountability could be improved and suggests there is room for improvement in the way we think about accountability.Read More
Complexity and systems science is getting a lot of interest in public policy, and related areas such as public health. But how well does it fit with existing public sector accountability structures? Below, Paul Cairney explores these issues in the UK context. This post originally appeared on his personal blog. Paul is a Professor of Politics and Public Policy at the University of Stirling, you can follow him on twitter at @Cairneypaul.Read More