Colin Talbot

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    Under the Fixed Term Parliaments Act, a minority Government doesn’t need a ‘confidence and supply’ arrangement to be able to govern

Under the Fixed Term Parliaments Act, a minority Government doesn’t need a ‘confidence and supply’ arrangement to be able to govern

During the election campaign, much attention has been focussed on the prospect of some kind of accommodation, or deal between the Labour and Scottish National Parties. However the discourse on the nature of such an arrangement rests on outdated notions which do not take into account the Fixed Term Parliament Act (FTPA) which changes the dynamic quite dramatically, according […]

Universal Credit Crunch: “It’s the implementation, stupid.”

The National Audit Office (NAO) has come out today with a scathing report regarding the implementation of Universal Credit, the government’s flagship welfare reform programme that aims to consolidate thirty odd benefits into a single system. Colin Talbot has long been pointing to the problems, which he argues are largely systemic – to do with the nature of Whitehall and its […]

Limit public service competition to non-profits

Limiting public sector work to organisations without private interests is a simple but effective solution to many policy problems, argues Colin Talbot. This could provide some (limited) competition while at the same time avoiding the downsides of private sector provision. The idea that competition is better than monopoly provision in public services is now established wisdom among the British political elite. Since […]

The Chancellor is refusing to take responsibility for Britain’s poor economic performance

Colin Talbot contends that yesterday’s budget was all spin and no substance. It amounted to a series of modest changes with little immediate relevance and a continued refusal by George Osborne to take responsibility for the UK’s economic condition.  The Chancellor delivered this year’s Budget with a lot of shouting but the sound and fury disguised the essentially dolittle nature […]

‘GOD’s’ coming replacement with a civil service ‘Trinity’ is a further sign that policy making is becoming even more divorced from its implementation.

Sir Gus O’Donnell was unique for his interest in the ‘sharp end’ of policy-making. As the outgoing Head of the Civil Service is set to be replaced by a triumvirate of a ‘policy’ man and two ‘policy implementers,’ Colin Talbot argues that the new arrangement reflects Whitehall’s obsession with policy-making and is likely to backfire as policy continues to be […]