In a speech to the Technology One conference in Brisbane on 14 October, CPD Chairperson Terry Moran AC outlined the five principles and key reforms that the Australian Public Sector need to adopt to perform in a new age.
Terry outlined his view of the current problems with the public service and asserted that, in opposition to several former colleagues, increased transparency is not only a good thing for our government but desperately needed. Terry argues for “radical reform” of Freedom of Information laws, as making more government documents part of the public discourse will make our administration more reliable, accountable, and remove the “over-reliance on guess work”.
Increased transparency will be the hallmark of the fourth age of the Public Sector. We must develop new analytical tools to transform our public workforce and the enhance capability and effectiveness in the new digital era. New and innovative technologies such as Big Data and AI will greatly influence what Terry calls the era of ‘Public Administration 4’ which must respond to “digital disruptions linked to globalisation”. These are Terry’s five principles for improvement in transitioning to Public Administration 4.
- Our public service analytical work needs to be rebalanced to treat distributive justice alongside technical efficiency.
- New technologies will make it far easier to devolve more responsibility for delivery to the local level.
- We will need a more strategic approach to planning and assessing investments in our major government systems.
- Reforms will be more reliable if we transform our approach to placing planning and management documents before the public
- The public sector should match, if not better, the private sector in responding to new technologies and improving efficiency.