Whitehall's Black Box: Accountability and performance in the senior civil serviceOut of print
Published date: 07 Aug 2006
Whitehall’s Black Box argues that in spite of its many qualities, the senior civil service is still too often amateur and insular, poor at strategic thinking, leadership and performance management.
“ippr is opening up a long overdue debate about what kind of civil service is needed to be fit for purpose in the 21st century, and how it should be held to account.”
-Geoff Mulgan, director at the Young Foundation and former director of the NO.10 Strategy Unit.
This report argues that in spite of its many qualities, the senior civil service is still too often amateur and insular, poor at strategic thinking, leadership and performance management. These worrying conclusions are founded on more than 65 interviews with senior civil servants, ministers, and public management leaders.
The authors, Guy Lodge and Ben Rogers, argue that Whitehall’s problems can be traced to anachronistic and inadequate accountability arrangements that have led to responsibility for defining the civil service’s mission, driving improvement and managing performance falling in the cracks. They go on to detail a far-reaching programme of reform that builds on Whitehall’s traditions of public service and integrity.
Guy Lodge, Associate Director for Politics and Power
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