Theme: Government & Parliament | Content Type: Journal article

Restructuring UK government at the Centre—Why the IfG Commission's Naïve Plan will not Work

Patrick Dunleavy



| 1 min read

An Institute for Government (IfG) report on ‘government at the centre’ recommends creating new, rationalist policy machinery (including an inner cabinet) to manage the UK government's four-year policy programmes—faithfully following how the Cameron-Clegg coalition operated in 2010–15. That government's disastrous example shows how politically naïve this plan would be. This article draws out its complete infeasibility in late 2024 conditions. The IfG also proposes setting up a new Department for the Civil Service headed by a powerful minister as a counterweight to the Treasury (criticised only for being ‘too good’ and hence over-dominant). Instead, this article sets out the case for a new and strong Department for Finance, Procurement and Productivity to take responsibility for spending control and other key public management roles, where the Treasury resource management has conspicuously failed in the last decade.

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    Patrick Dunleavy

    Patrick Dunleavy is Emeritus Professor in Political Science and Public Policy at the London School of Economics.

    Articles by Patrick Dunleavy