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Strategic Thinking in Government: Without National Strategy, Can Viable Government Strategy Emerge?

HC 1625, Twenty Fourth Report of Session 2010-12 - Volume I: Report, Together with Formal Minutes, Oral and Written Evidence

House of Commons - Public Administration Select Committee
TSO (The Stationery Office)
Price: £17.50
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In the light of recent concerns about a strategic vacuum at the centre of Government, 'Strategic Thinking in Government: Without National Strategy, Can Viable Government Strategy Emerge? (HC 1625)' explores the capacity of Ministers and officials to carry out long-term strategic thinking to tackle the complex, diverse and unpredictable domestic and global challenges the country faces.

It finds that an absence of clear and precise definitions of terms meant that policy and different levels of strategy became muddled, leading to unintended and unwelcome outcomes.

Drawing on the evidence it received, the Report sets out clear definitions for national or 'grand' strategy, operational strategy and policy.

The Public Administration Select Committee (PASC) have produced a number of recommendations to overcome the barriers to working strategically in Government. Central to these recommendations is that the Government should publish an annual 'Statement of National Strategy' in Parliament which reflects the interests of all parts of the UK and the devolved policy agendas. The report states that the Cabinet and its committees are accountable for decisions, but there remains a critical unfulfilled role at the centre of Government in coordinating and reconciling priorities across departments, and of long-term and short-term goals.

The report concludes that the Government's six strategic aims as provided to PASC are "too meaningless to serve any useful purpose".

The strategic aims of the Government, informed by public opinion, should reflect the UK's national character, assets, capabilities, interests and values, and provide an indication of the objectives which policies must achieve.

Extent 128 pages ISBN 9780215043900
Size A4 Price £17.50
Format Paperback Published 24 Apr 2012
Availability Colour copy: 3 - 5 days Availability help (opens in new window) Delivery Delivery options and charges
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