Thursday, 10 March 2011

Public Sector Reform in the UK

In the UK currently much of the political discourse is centred on reducing Britain's Deficit and the Government's cuts in spending and the resulting impact on public services. However there is a second quite interesting stream to the government's plans that is receiving less media attention, the reform and the enhance role of the private sector in public services.

The UK has led in the past on enhancing the role business plays in the public sector, throughout the 80s it was the privatisation of unities, something that many other countries have emulated since. In the 90s and early 2000s it was the UK that led the way on Public Private Partnerships with PFIs, this initiative is also used increasing abroad and the UK is one of the world's largest providers of experts in this field.

The UK has a history of innovative public sector reform and this next round proposed by the Prime Minister David Cameron has the opportunity to be in the same vein. Plans to open government contracts up to SMEs rather than just large Corporates, for example, is sensible, it allows the country's largest employing sector access to the country's largest buyer. And widening the role the Private Sector can play in the provision of services will increase competition and hopefully improve quality at a time when government is decreasing spending.

If well implemented, this round of reform could well be emulated across the globe like the past.

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