News and Events from the Centre for Public Services from 2008.

Shaping the future on failed policies
A featured article in *eGov Monitor* which argues that Barnet Council's 'strategic council' proposals are rooted in the same policies and ideology that led to the current financial crisis. "We do not need to reinvent local government but reinstate public sector principles, rethink organisational structures, service delivery and adopt progressive strategies using evidence, transparent language, honesty and the genuine involvement of staff, service users and residents."
2008-12-16 09:27:53
Economic Impact of Prisons in Rural Areas: A Review of the Issues, Dexter Whitfield
The South Australian State Government is proposing five PPPs for the future development of the State’s correctional facilities by moving men’s and women’s prisons, a youth training centre and a pre-release centre to Murray Bridge.
2008-12-08 10:12:17
Failure to Assess Options for Future Shape of the Council
A critique of the London Borough of Barnet proposals to radically change the responsibilities, role and functions of the Council for UNISON, GMB, NUT and NASUWT.
2008-12-01 12:03:38
PPP Database
The PPP Database has been updated to include the South Tyneside MBC contract with BT which commenced on 1 October 2008. This has resulted in changes to the regional, employment and market share tables.
2008-10-03 09:09:29
PPP Briefing: Strategic Service-delivery Partnerships and Outsourced Shared Services Projects
This 20-page Briefing, commissioned by Northumberland, Durham and Northamptonshire UNISON branches, is a summary for elected members, staff and service users of the current evidence against SSPs and outsourcing of shared services projects. It covers finance, savings and investment; accountability and transparency of JVCs; performance; risks levels; employment and job creation; and in-house capability to transform services.
2008-07-23 12:34:31
Leisure Trusts Briefing
A summary of the case against the formation of Leisure Trusts. It examines the performance of leisure trusts, access to capital and savings, social enterprise and community ownership, service integration, the effect on jobs, service improvement, community participation, democratic accountability and increased risks.
2008-07-14 15:41:45
Policy Context of Regeneration in Newcastle
A revised edition of this discussion paper for the West End Community Development Consortium is available. It includes sections on the national policy framework, the government's development strategies, community participation and the role of the community & voluntary sector in service provision, lessons learnt and best practice, and community participation.
2008-07-09 14:36:25
Commissioning and Procurement Toolkit for Local Government and Health
New Commissioning and Procurement Toolkit for UNISON Northern (April 2008). It is divided into 11 parts covering: The Political Economy of Commissioning and Procurement, Developing a Branch strategy, Reviewing Services, Efficiency reviews, Shared Services Projects, Options Appraisal, The case for in-house provision, Capital works and BSF/PFI/PPP projects, Procurement and commissioning process, Protecting jobs, terms and conditions and Community and social benefits from procurement.
2008-06-10 11:44:58
Updated PPP Database
The PPP Database has been updated to include the Glasgow City Council contract with Serco Group and Avon and Somerset Police Authority joining Southwest One, the shared services joint venture with Somerset CC and Taunton Deane DC operated by IBM. This has resulted in changes to the regional, employment and market share table.
2008-06-09 17:31:26
Financing Infrastructure in the 21st Century: The Long Term Impact of Public Private Partnerships in Britain and Australia by Dexter Whitfield
The Private Finance Initiative/Public Private Partnership (PPP/PFI) debate is locked into technical issues about financing, on/off balance sheet accountancy, risk allocation, efficiency, narrow value for money matters and the procurement process. This report draws together the recent experience, trends and developments of PPP/PFIs and Strategic Service-delivery Partnerships (SSPs) in Britain and the development of PPPs in Australia. The objective is to generate a wider debate on the longer-term issues of accountability, sustainability, the future of public services, the role of government and the provision of the social and economic infrastructure. Published by Don Dunstan Foundation, University of Adelaide, Paper 2/2007. Now available to download.
2008-03-20 10:35:05
Audit Commission's take on SSP's is 'fundamentally flawed'
An article in Public Servant (27 February 2008) by Dexter Whitfield is highly critical of the recent Audit Commission report on Strategic Service-delivery Partnerships. It poses five questions which lie behind the poor quality research and secrecy.
2008-02-27 20:06:08
Public Sector Research ONLINE launched
Public Sector Research ONLINE provides detailed guidance on how to research and investigate public policy, public services, the economy, government, companies, consultants, trusts, organisations and individuals. It is intended to provide a service to those involved in public policy making, public sector research, public employees, service users, trade unions, community and civil society organisations.
2008-02-10 16:56:22
Public Private Partnerships: Confidential ‘Research’, A Critique of the Audit Commission’s study of Strategic Service-delivery Partnerships by Dexter Whitfield
A highly critical assessment of the Audit Commission’s recent report, For Better, For Worse, on Strategic Service-delivery Partnerships. It finds ten fundamental flaws ranging from inadequate methodology, no evidence base, employment issues ignored, no audit of private sector investment and no comparison of an alternative in-house approach. The Commission’s claim that the information on which its findings are based is “commercially confidential” makes a mockery of transparency, performance management, democratic accountability and community engagement. The second section of the report uses quotes from the Audit Commission report to highlight the shortcomings in more detail.
2008-01-29 21:00:12
PPP Database
ESSU has launched a PPP Database on Strategic Service-delivery Partnerships (SSPs) in local government. It covers 35 contracts in corporate, ICT and technical services in Britain with a total value of £7.3 billion with nearly 14,600 staff. The PPP Database consists of seven tables covering SSP contracts, those in procurement, regional distribution, employment models, private sector market share and local authorities which rejected the SSP option.
2008-01-28 13:47:15
Southwest One: Lessons and New Agenda for Public Services in the South West
Somerset County Council and Taunton Deane District Council signed a £400m Strategic Service-delivery Partnership contract with IBM in September 2007. The Joint Venture Company, Southwest One, is the first SSP to have a framework agreement to enable other local authorities and public bodies to obtain services bypassing the procurement process. It is also the first to potentially include a Police Authority as a partner (Avon and Somerset Police Authority negotiating to join the partnership) and the first to combine secondment with a 10-year assurance to staff in the founding authorities. This report exposes the unprecedented use of commercial confidentiality in the procurement process, identifies effective ways for UNISON to respond to the new agenda and ensure a good industrial relations framework in Southwest One. It also proposes regional and national public policy changes to improve the accountability and transparency of options appraisal and procurement processes.
2008-01-24 15:53:56
Downloads from ESSU website reach new peak
58,000 .pdf and .doc files were downloaded from the ESSU website in 2007, a 45% increase on the previous year.
2008-01-01 09:35:15


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This document was created by Chris Croome on 2003-11-03 16:14:40.
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