Citizen Today: August 2015

In this edition, Special Secretary Amarendra Sinha discusses India’s manufacturing plan.

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Welcome back to Citizen Today, our magazine for government and the public sector.

The prolonged aftermath of the global financial crisis, demographic change and technological advances have changed how governments deliver services.

There is a renewed focus on value for money. How can public spending deliver the maximum possible benefit?

There is also a new imperative to be more responsive to the needs and preferences of service users. How can governments provide services to citizens who are more connected than ever before and who expect convenience?

As Kathryn Campbell, Secretary of Australia’s Department of Human Services, puts it: “People have very busy lives. They don’t want to be spending time queuing, they want to be spending time with their family and friends.”

Campbell explains how the use of digital platforms is helping her department become more responsive to citizens and free up capacity to meet ever-growing service demands.

As governments allocate scarce resources, departments are under increasing pressure from treasury departments and citizens to spend taxpayers’ money prudently, creating the most value possible.

Our feature on defense explores how better management of procurement, talent, technology and budgets can help build capabilities without large spending increases.

We also examine how schools in the UK can achieve better results by creating an organizational structure that improves governance and drives economies of scale – rather than by simply spending more money.

Continuing the education theme, we find out why tuition fees remain off the agenda in the Czech Republic.

We discover why the US must get better at administering public-private partnerships if it is to make much-needed infrastructure improvements.

Also in the US, we report on Detroit’s emergence from bankruptcy. We show how the city was stabilized and offer lessons learned that other municipal authorities, in the US and further afield, can draw on.

Rounding out this edition, we interview Amarendra Sinha, Special Secretary and Development Commissioner at India’s Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises. He tells us why the Government is putting small businesses at the forefront of its drive to make India a manufacturing powerhouse.

I hope you enjoy this issue and gain insight from our interviews and analysis.

If you have feedback or ideas for future features, please contact us at citizentoday@ey.com.

EY - George Atalla

George Atalla
Global Government & Public Sector Leader