Memorandum submitted by The Centre for
Management and Policy Studies
1. The Centre for Management and Policy
Studies, which incorporates the Civil Service College as a Directorate,
was established in June 1999 in order to:
(i) ensure that the Civil Service is cultivating
the right skills, culture and approaches to perform its task;
(ii) ensure that policy makers across government
have access to the best research, evidence and international experience;
(iii) help government to learn better from
2. Our work focuses on three core areas
(i) developing and encouraging an approach
to policy making which draws on evidence and rises above departmental
(ii) evaluating new approaches to policy
making and identifying and promoting best practice, inside and
outside the Civil Service, in the UK and internationally; and
(iii) the training and development of Ministers
and civil servants based on leading edge thinking.
3. These areas of activity are closely related.
For example, the development of new approaches to policy making
and the accumulation of best practice feed into our training programmes
(with some 35,000 customers expected this year). The reflections
and suggestions of those who are taking part in training programmes
are fed upwards into new and improved forms of management and
policy making. In these ways, we play an important role in helping
the Civil Service to draw upon the breadth of its talent and experience.
4. Although the main focus of our work is
the Civil Service itself, we also aim to influence the quality
of management and decision-making across the whole public sector.
We need strategic partnerships with a range of key public sector
organisations to help us in this role. CMPS will always be a small
organisation in relation to the size of its task: partnership
and networking will always, as a result, be a central feature
of our work.
5. CMPS is organised around three main Directorates:
(i) Corporate Development and Training
Directorate (CDT) is responsible for the main corporate development
programmes used for training present and future leaders of the
Civil Service, and for organising high level seminars which bring
together Ministers, civil servants and senior figures from outside
government. It is also responsible for a programme of Departmental
(ii) The Civil Service College Directorate
(CSC) provides training and development for civil servants
and their international counterparts. At home, the College's products,
which are offered in a competitive market, take the form of open
programmes and events tailored to meet the needs of customer organisations.
Internationally, the College provides assistance to emerging democracies
and transition states.
(iii) Policy Studies Directorate (PSD)
is a centre of expertise, advice and information to support excellence
in policy making at all stages, from formulation to evaluation.
Drawing on the latest developments in IT and knowledge management
and experience in the UK and abroad, PSD seeks to encourage and
actively promote the best in policy development and review and,
in particular, an evidence-based, cross-cutting approach.
6. Although a broad division of labour is
evident, each Directorate is involved to a greater or lesser extent
in all three aspects of our core mission. This means that all
Directorates have to work closely together in a flexible and co-operative
way. To assist that process, we have created a Business and
Resources Directorate (BRD) as a lean central resource designed
to knit together the work of the different Directorates into a
coherent business strategy, and to project CMPS as a whole to
our external stakeholders and customers.
7. Taking each Directorate in turn, the
main thrust of its activities, the way in which it contributes
to the process of modernisation, and its key priorities in CMPS's
Business Plan for 2000-2001 are the following:
The focus is on developing sustained cultural
change, better leadership and more effective government. Priorities
in the current Business Plan include:
(i) The re-design and re-launch of the entire
suite of corporate training programmes for members of the Senior
Civil Service, doubling access and attuning training to key stages
in an individual's career. The emphasis is on practical leadership
responses to real issues, and learning from peers in the public
and private sectors.
(ii) Developing a comprehensive programme
of learning for Ministers, including induction workshops for new
appointees, regular monthly seminars for junior Ministers and
events focusing on particular topics relevant to Minister's leadership
(iii) Designing and delivering a rolling
programme of Departmental Peer Reviews, in which Departments learn
from a constructive examination of their business by a group of
independent peers; and disseminating the key learning points.
(iv) Organising a programme of high level
joint seminars for Ministers and senior officials, focusing on
key aspects of policy making.
9. CIVIL SERVICE
The focus is on training designed to support
modernisation at home and abroad. Priorities in the current Business
(i) The design and delivery of a new and
ambitious range of training, which supports the "Modernising
Government" reform agenda in priority areas such as leadership,
project management, business planning and diversity.
(ii) Making systematic use of the results
of research and data on best practice, and feeding them in to
the design of high quality training products.
(iii) Greater use of the Internet in delivering
training to customers, and following up regularly in order to
encourage feedback and more continuous learning.
(iv) Working in accession states in support
of the necessary skills development for civil servants commensurate
with membership of the European Union.
10. POLICY STUDIES
The focus is encouraging and sharing information
about new approaches to policy making. Priorities in the current
Business Plan include:
(i) Encouraging an approach to the use of
analytical evidence which cuts across Departmental boundaries,
through the co-ordination of Departmental initiatives, the development
of Knowledge Pools and the establishment of a central information
unit to bring together analytical evidence from the UK and across
(ii) The development of a programme of research
and fellowships to evaluate new approaches to policy making and
to examine the policy process; and to identify and promote best
practice through the most effective means.
(iii) Working with evaluators within and
outside government to establish, for the civil service, a centre
of expertise and advice in policy evaluation; conducting a programme
(iv) Advising overseas governments and individuals
on UK public sector reform and arranging itineraries for visitors
to the Cabinet Office.
11. CMPS is funded as a net sub-head of
the Cabinet Office vote and has its own Accounting Officer, the
Director General, who reports annually to Parliament. Compared
to other parts of the Cabinet Office, we are unusual in that over
80 per cent of our budget comes from earned income from training
and similar events. The financial targets for CMPS are therefore
expressed in net cost terms, as our 2000-01 plan indicates:
(figures are given in £000s.)
12. CMPS currently has some 350 staff, of whom the majority
are based in the Civil Service College Directorate in Sunningdale.