Project 13 Gov 2.0 Governance and Institutions Report by by qwk11875

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									       Report by Mike Waller, Heuris Partners Ltd




               Gov 2.0 Taskforce


Project 13: Gov 2.0 Governance and Institutions:
     Embedding the 2.0 agenda in the APS



                     1 December 2009
Project 13: Gov 2.0 Governance and Institutions: Report by Heuris Partners 102 Cardigan Street Carlton Victoria
3053 ABN 59 097 844 445




Contents
Acknowledgements....................................................................................................................................... 3
Executive Summary....................................................................................................................................... 5
     Scale and nature of challenge with a transition to Gov 2.0 ...................................................................... 5
     Australia’s position on the Gov 2.0 journey.............................................................................................. 5
     Governance and Organisational Design for Gov 2.0 ................................................................................. 6
        Ownership and accountability for Gov 2.0 ........................................................................................... 6
        Clarifying roles and responsibilities ...................................................................................................... 6
        Effective coordination on Gov 2.0 policy and delivery ......................................................................... 7
1.      Purpose ................................................................................................................................................. 8
2.      Context .................................................................................................................................................. 8
     Australia Gov 2.0 – the Government’s change agenda ............................................................................ 8
     The international context ....................................................................................................................... 10
     Different names, common agendas ........................................................................................................ 10
     Implementation – three broad phases ................................................................................................... 14
3.      Where is Australia on the Gov 2.0 journey? ....................................................................................... 15
     Summary of findings ............................................................................................................................... 15
4.      Nature and scale of the public sector change implied by Gov 2.0 ..................................................... 17
     A more granular view of a citizen focused approach ............................................................................. 17
        Lessons from the front line – US Army ............................................................................................... 19
        And not just a public sector challenge ................................................................................................ 20
     Implications for governance of Gov 2.0 implementation ....................................................................... 20
5.      Governance and Organisational Design for Gov 2.0 ........................................................................... 21
     The proposed landscape ......................................................................................................................... 21
     Ownership and accountability for Gov 2.0 ............................................................................................. 23
        Options ................................................................................................................................................ 23
        Suggested approach ............................................................................................................................ 24
     Clarifying roles and responsibilities ........................................................................................................ 25


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Project 13: Gov 2.0 Governance and Institutions: Report by Heuris Partners 102 Cardigan Street Carlton Victoria
3053 ABN 59 097 844 445

       The Information Commissioner and other players ............................................................................. 25
       Effective coordination on Gov 2.0 policy and delivery ....................................................................... 26
Annex A: Evaluation of Australian progress towards Gov 2.0 in an international context ....................... 28
   UN 2008 Survey....................................................................................................................................... 28
       UN Survey findings and governance/organisational design & processes ........................................... 31
   EU governance perspectives - public sector information (PSI) directive ................................................ 31
       National PSI bodies/dispute settlement bodies ................................................................................. 32
   Summary of findings ............................................................................................................................... 33
Annex B: Extracts from “Reform of Australian Government Administration: Building the world’s best
public service” ............................................................................................................................................. 35
Annex C: Three forces that will transform management .......................................................................... 37
Annex D: Freedom of Information Act 1982 amendments & the role of the Information Commissioner 39
   FOI Act Amendments .............................................................................................................................. 39
       Role of Information Commissioner (extract from PM&C Guidance document) ................................ 39
   Legislative functions of the Commissioner (Information Commissioner Bill 2009)................................ 40
   Functions—what are the information commissioner functions? ........................................................... 40



Figure 1: Transformation Agenda for Connected Governance ................................................................... 13
Figure 2: Gov 2.0 - entities, roles and responsibilities ................................................................................ 22
Figure 3: Lead accountability for Gov 2.0 -evaluation ................................................................................ 23




Acknowledgements
This report has benefited greatly from input and guidance from Professor Peter Shergold, AC, Macquarie
Group Foundation Professor at the Centre for Social Impact at UNSW and former head of the
Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet in Canberra who has endorsed the findings and
recommendations. Dr Nicholas Gruen, Chair of the Gov 2.0 Taskforce, has also provided invaluable input
in relation to the broader context and content of the Taskforce’s work. Full responsibility for the content
and recommendations (together with any emissions or errors), however, rests solely with the author.

Mike Waller

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Project 13: Gov 2.0 Governance and Institutions: Report by Heuris Partners 102 Cardigan Street Carlton Victoria
3053 ABN 59 097 844 445

1                                                December                                                    2009




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Project 13: Gov 2.0 Governance and Institutions: Report by Heuris Partners 102 Cardigan Street Carlton Victoria
3053 ABN 59 097 844 445




Executive Summary
Scale and nature of challenge with a transition to Gov 2.0
Ministerial expectations of the Taskforce’s work and an examination of international and domestic
experience in this field clearly point to the profound nature of the shift contemplated in the way the
governments will interact with their citizens. This has major implications for:

   Policy and resource management frameworks, which will increasingly need to be flexible and
    responsive to meet needs that cross traditional organisational boundaries.
   The respective roles, responsibilities and capabilities of senior management/ supervisors and
    frontline staff, with the latter requiring and exercising more extensive levels of responsibility and
    authority to the joint development of solutions tailored to individual needs and to commit the
    required resources from a variety of agencies/sources.
   Intensive monitoring, assessment and real time feedback and knowledge management systems to
    enable effective risk management and learning across functions/agencies.

Some examples of this approach clearly exist and the underlying themes are reflected in much of the
work of the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) on more effective Federalism. But in general the
model represents significant challenge to many of the precepts on which Australian public sector has
traditionally operated.

The evidence also reinforces an understanding of the essential feature of the challenge – one of cultural
change across government, rather than technology or even access to information per se.

Australia’s position on the Gov 2.0 journey
In terms of overall performance, the gap between promise and performance remains large in many
countries. No country can lay claim to having yet achieved the overall transformation in public sector
culture, systems and processes required to deliver a fully articulated Gov 2.0 approach. But a range of
evidence suggests that Scandinavian countries, the US and the UK generally lead in a range of critical
components. This provides a basis for learning from and avoiding the mistakes of the leaders in these
areas.

Australia is generally well-placed in relation to the pre-conditions for making the major transformation
involved in shifting wholesale towards a citizen centred Gov 2.0 model. But Australia is currently lagging
behind leading countries in a range of critical areas (e.g. Freedom of Information (FOI), use and re-use of
information). Some agencies are clearly leaders but there is a very long way to go in relation to opening
up access to the vast array of data that has been collected and/or developed using taxpayers’ money,
for example currently residing within public sector research agencies and closely held via
licensing/patent arrangements.


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Project 13: Gov 2.0 Governance and Institutions: Report by Heuris Partners 102 Cardigan Street Carlton Victoria
3053 ABN 59 097 844 445

Governance and Organisational Design for Gov 2.0
Ownership and accountability for Gov 2.0
The range of interests and accountabilities engaged in this area is very broad and not wholly clear,
reflecting the early stage of the change agenda. Accountability for crucial elements of the agenda may
be shared or delegated but, from a Government and broader societal viewpoint, it is highly desirable
that one agency/executive carries ultimate accountability:

   An analysis of the options, suggests single point accountability for this stage in the transformation
    process should ideally rest with the Secretary of the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet
    (PM&C), reflecting the far reaching nature of the agenda, the multifaceted nature of the issues and
    the department’s leadership on the reform program for the Australian Public Service.
   The Secretary’s role could be supported by the type of unit established by the UK Government
    following the completion of its Power of Information Taskforce. This unit could both serve as a
    secretariat function and a ginger group within government for innovation etc, supporting the
    Information Commissioner in extending the boundaries of departmental performance beyond
    compliance with the FOI legislation.
   As with a range of other central initiatives run out of PM&C, this activity could be strictly time
    limited (say 18-24 months), with the intention of substantively “mainstreaming” the issue into line
    agencies and the new Information Commissioner (IC), or other appropriate entity, within this
    timeframe.

Clarifying roles and responsibilities
Compared with other countries well advanced with preparations for Gov 2.0/e-government path, the
current mixture of roles allocated between the Information Commissioner, the Australian Government
Information Management Office (AGIMO) and other agencies is unusual, if not unique:

   There is potential for tension between an audit/accountability role of the IC and that of
    advocate/coach in support of a “beyond compliance” approach and culture. It is also not clear how
    easy it might be to play honest broker between public interests in maximal disclosure and agency
    concerns (real or imagined) about the cost, practicability or presentational exposures arising from
    increased transparency and openness.
   There are also critical issues to be addressed in relation to the interface between AGIMO and the
    Commissioner in relation to the Government’s information systems architecture and infrastructure.

Assuming no change in the current remit, then establishing the right balance will be a vital success factor
for the IC and his/her staff. Clearly, any arrangement can be made to work with both goodwill and clarity
around precise roles and responsibilities. An alternative, structural approach, however, might be to
adopt something akin to the UK model. This would involve:

   focusing the Commissioner role on compliance, auditing and reporting; and
   vesting the advocacy, systems and policy role with National Archives, which could also press forward
    with the development and delivery of a central data website for the Government. (This unit could

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Project 13: Gov 2.0 Governance and Institutions: Report by Heuris Partners 102 Cardigan Street Carlton Victoria
3053 ABN 59 097 844 445

    also provide continuity of function once the proposed follow on unit from the Taskforce disbands
    since National Archives is a PM&C portfolio agency.)

Effective coordination on Gov 2.0 policy and delivery
Maintaining and increasing momentum across government following completion of the Taskforce’s work
will be critical to delivering the transformational changes needed to deliver major progress with the Gov
2.0 agenda within a reasonable timeframe. The post Taskforce coordination arrangements appear to
focus around the role of the Information Commissioner and a supporting advisory committee from key
agencies and the coordination arrangements surrounding AGIMO’s role in relation to ICT.

The emphasis on cultural and behavioural change in the public service as the key driver of Gov 2.0,
however, suggests the need for a much more direct and powerful ink between this agenda and public
sector reform generally. An important element of this would be delivered if lead accountability were
transferred to PM&C (as suggested above). Regardless of this, however, it would be desirable to raise
the status of this agenda by:

      establishing an implementation taskforce chaired by the Secretary of PM&C (or one of his
       deputies), charged with overseeing delivery of the agenda over the next 12-18 months.
      by forming a sub-committee of the Advisory Group on Public Sector Reform to address delivery
       of Gov 2.0 to ensure that developments in this area are fully integrated into the broader reform
       agenda.




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Project 13: Gov 2.0 Governance and Institutions: Report by Heuris Partners 102 Cardigan Street Carlton Victoria
3053 ABN 59 097 844 445




1. Purpose
This report:

•   Examines local and international best practice examples of organisational and governance
    arrangements to embed the Gov 2.0 agenda, taking account of Australia’s relative and absolute
    performance in making the transition to a more transparent, connected and participative form of
    government.
•   Recommends a model for best practice organisational and governance arrangements to embed the
    Gov 2.0 agenda.
•   Provides advice on governance arrangements, the role of key agencies and the new Information
    Commissioner and other key agencies.


2. Context

Australia Gov 2.0 – the Government’s change agenda
Ministerial expectations of the Gov 2.0 Taskforce’s work clearly point to the profound nature of the shift
contemplated in the way the Federal Government will interact with Australian people as we move into
the world of Government 2.0. They also point to the essential feature of the challenge – one of cultural
change across government:

      In June …….I launched the Taskforce to advise on how to make best use of
      government information; establish a pro-disclosure culture within government;
      collect and make best use of citizen ideas and capabilities; and drive innovation
      within the public service.

      The challenges are not in identifying and applying technology, but in dealing with
      the cultural and procedural changes necessary to take advantage of the
      opportunities the technology presents us.

      The desire to be more open, innovative and collaborative must be balanced with
      the other elements of responsible government – the need to be secure, impartial
      and efficient, and to maintain an appropriate level of separation between
      members of Parliament and public servants.

      To make government more open and responsive the public service must be
      empowered and encouraged to proactively disseminate information and
      participate in public discussion.




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Project 13: Gov 2.0 Governance and Institutions: Report by Heuris Partners 102 Cardigan Street Carlton Victoria
3053 ABN 59 097 844 445

         The difficulty and importance of this challenge is often overlooked. Yet there are
         few more important steps for achieving the objectives of Government 2.0 than
         equipping public servants with the skills, tools and permission to engage.

         It would be a mistake for Government 2.0 advocates to see the public service as
         simply       an       organisation     in      need    of     an      upgrade.
         Public service culture cannot be wiped and reprogrammed – and nor should it be.

         It must be remembered the Australian Public Service delivers enormous value for
         taxpayers. It is comprised of thousands of talented, dedicated public policy
         experts, who collectively produce most of the policies and services delivered by
         government. It is no wonder that many of the leading voices within the
         government 2.0 community come from the public service.

         But the success of government 2.0 will not be assured unless the principles and
         practices of the agenda are embraced by public servants as central to how they do
         business.

         Government 2.0 must be seen as central to delivering on core government
         objectives. If we are to have the best public service in the world we won’t do it
         without embracing the attitudes and techniques of government 2.0.

         What we have committed to is a significant agenda of cultural change; one that
         will not be achieved in the short life of the Taskforce, but over a number of years.1

What this might mean for the APS at a more granular level is discussed in Section 4 below.




1
    Speech by The Hon Lindsay Tanner MP Minister for Finance and Deregulation - Government 2.0 Conference, 19 October 2009

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     Project 13: Gov 2.0 Governance and Institutions: Report by Heuris Partners 102 Cardigan Street Carlton Victoria
     3053 ABN 59 097 844 445




Exhibit 1: Improvements in public services and
effective citizen empowerment rest on enhanced
transparency of information.                                 The international context
New technologies are providing opportunities to open         A recent report by the UK Cabinet Office indicates
up information as never before. Governments around           strong commonality between the Australian Gov 2.0
the world are responding to this technological               agenda and developments in other administrations
revolution by re-evaluating the approach they take to
information transparency. The shift required, however,
                                                             (Exhibit 1). As indicated in Exhibit 1, the USA under
is more than just a technical one. The starting point for    the Obama Presidency has established an Open
government in countries such as the USA, which are at        Government reform agenda intended to reach into
the leading edge of information transparency, is that        and transform every aspect of the Government’s
government information should be in the public
domain and easily available for use and re-use by            interaction with its citizens, viz:
citizens. This approach is underpinned by freedom of
information legislation and practices which actively         Coordinated policy on transparency, participation
promote openness in government. Across other                 and collaboration:
countries, government cultures will similarly need to
change, possibly prompted by changes in legislation.                 Require/drive policy, legal and technology
The need for a change in the culture of governments,                  leadership in every agency to develop Open
however, should not be used as an excuse to diminish
the role of government. It would be a mistake for                     Government Plans with public input and to
governments simply to step back. Rather, they should                  drive distributed culture change
act as strategic leaders – ensuring that balanced and
reliable data is collected and then released in easy-to-     Open Government in Service of National Priorities,
use, uniform formats that all sections of society will       via open government platforms
find useful. Only if governments play this role will
citizens and communities be genuinely empowered to           Open and collaborative practices:
make informed decisions, hold government to account
and participate in dialogue and interaction.
                                                                     Open data; open spending; open
“Power in People’s Hands:
Learning from the World’s Best Public Services” (UK                   participation; open expertise and peer
Cabinet Office, Strategy Unit, July 2009                              review; open grant making platform; open
                                                                      problem-solving.2




     Different names, common agendas
     The labels may differ (“Open Government”, “Connected Governance”, “E-governance”, “and E-
     Government ”;“ Public Sector Information initiatives”). But the critical ingredients in delivering this
     broad agenda being pursued across many governments3 have much in common:


     2
       Open Government: Taking Stock, Looking Forward Beth Simone Noveck , U.S. Deputy Chief Technology Officer &
     Director, White House Open Government Initiative (August 2009).
     3
       Initially in developed/OECD economies but increasingly in developing countries.

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     i.    counting what counts: collecting high-quality data in the first place, and combining performance
            data with information on wider social outcomes so that citizens have reliable and balanced
            information at their fingertips;
    ii.    opening up information for use: make information (including performance and financial
            information) available so that citizens can compare services and make informed decisions, drive
            improvements in services, and hold government to account;
    iii.   opening up information for re-use: make information and data available so that it can be easily
            re-used by citizens – mobilising a wealth of expertise to facilitate innovative use of data by
            citizens, thereby driving both more informed decision-making and wealth creation via the
            development of new markets; and
    iv.     harnessing the power of networks to democratise policy debate and decision-making: use
            interactive technologies, such as web 2.0, to break government monopolies on information
            creation and open up dialogue between and among citizens and professionals on critical issues
            of both high policy and more detailed service design and delivery.4

A critical foundation stone for the change is a shift in presumption that the citizen has a right of access
to publicly held/generated information, unless there is an overriding public interest in non-disclosure.
Technology and infrastructure are important catalysts and enablers (e.g. via higher bandwidth internet
connections, mobile phone networks).

The other common feature is that this is very much work in progress - the depth and pace of change and
implementation varies across jurisdictions:

           In practice, in the area of connected governance and back office integration, there is a
           continuing gap between what is promised and what is delivered – both to governments and to
           citizens.5


 This reflects the inheritance of legal, political, bureaucratic and cultural frameworks against which the
reform agenda has been launched, the resources available and devoted to enabling infrastructure and
the policy priority accorded by political and other leaders. In this sense there are close parallels with the
challenges of implementing the spirit, as opposed to the letter, of one key element of the E-government
agenda – Freedom of Information (FOI).

More than 50 countries have comprehensive “freedom of information” laws, with many more working
on proposals to introduce such provisions. There has been a large growth in such laws across the world
in the past ten years as countries recognise their importance in properly functioning democracies. In a
number of OECD countries these laws are of long standing, dating back twenty/thirty years or more, e.g.
those of the US, Canada, New Zealand, Australia and Sweden. The quality of implementation of these


4
5
 e-Government Survey 2008 From e-Government to Connected Governance, page xvi (Department of Economic and Social
Affairs, Division for Public Administration and Development Management, United Nations, New York)
http://unpan1.un.org/intradoc/groups/public/documents/UN/UNPAN028607.pdf

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     Project 13: Gov 2.0 Governance and Institutions: Report by Heuris Partners 102 Cardigan Street Carlton Victoria
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                                                                 laws in terms of quality and timeliness of responses
Exhibit 2: FOI in Canada                                         to FOI requests varies dramatically both between
Still, much more is needed to bring about a true culture         jurisdictions and, within jurisdictions, between
of openness and transparency, To move forward,                   different agencies (see Exhibit 2 – the Canadian
strong, concerted leadership is required, now more
                                                                 experience).
than ever, from all quarters and at all levels.
The Treasury Board Secretariat—as the organization
responsible for ensuring that federal institutions fulfil        A recent review of the implementation of FOI in
their responsibilities under the Act—needs to provide            Scotland also starkly outlined the underlying
institutional leadership guidance with clear                     challenges:
performance objectives, explicit directives and
adequate financial support and resources.                        We have stressed how FOI is positioned by Scottish
Within institutions, executive leadership is crucial to          public bodies as only one aspect of the change
how well institutions fulfil their obligations under the         processes that they face. Here we stress a
Act. All ministers, deputy ministers and heads of                background factor vital to improvement in the FOI
agencies throughout the system must commit to the
                                                                 system; this is leadership towards the broader
required cultural change. Through appropriate
                                                                 concept of open government. We have noted during
delegation of authority, access to information directors
must be empowered to act in the true spirit of the               this research a number of responses both from the
legislation.                                                     survey, but particularly from the case studies, that
                                                                 differentiate the letter of Freedom of Information
                                                                 Scotland Act (FOISA) from its spirit. The dominant
                                                                 view that has come forward is that FOISA has been
                                                                 implemented by public bodies within a rational-legal
                                                                 frame of reference that stresses the letter rather
                                                                 than the spirit of the law. Many of our interviewees
                                                                 have lamented this reduced vision of the Act,
                                                                 preferring that it be seen as one important aspect of
                                                                 a more open government approach. Public bodies
                                                                 vary in this respect. In one case study for example,
                                                                 interviewees spoke very positively about a new
                                                                 leadership style within the organisation that was
                                                                 democratically inspired and that sought new forms
                                                                 of openness of practice.6

                                                                 In preparing their report cited above, Burt and
                                                                 Taylor pointed to two factors that present
                                                                 challenges to more open government. First, public
                                                                 bodies prevailing culture of ‘administrative
                                                                 rationality’ whose core characteristics include a
                                                                 tendency towards continuity rather than change;
Office of Canadian Information Commissioner Annual
                                                                 the routinisation and standardisation of procedures;
Report 2008-9/ Special Report 2008
                                                                 strong historically arrived at departmental
                                                                 structures [silos]; and centralisation built around
                                                                 hierarchies of responsibility, command, and control.

     6
       The Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002: New Modes of Information Management in Scottish Public Bodies? Report to
     the Scottish Information Commissioner By Eleanor Burt and John Taylor September 2007


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Project 13: Gov 2.0 Governance and Institutions: Report by Heuris Partners 102 Cardigan Street Carlton Victoria
3053 ABN 59 097 844 445

The embedded nature of these characteristics make the achievement of deep, meaningful and
sustainable change difficult to achieve in the short to medium term.

Second, ‘political rationality’ – that is the exercise of judgement in decision-making that is inherent (and
inevitable) within organisations generally and governmental settings, in particular. Within all
organisations, but most particularly those supporting governmental activities, judgements will
necessarily be made about the sensitivity of information, the timing of release, how released
information will be received, the implications of release, the implications of non-release, and who within
the hierarchy of command and control must be involved and the proper nature of that involvement.
Where information is to be shared or communicated to others political rationality will tend towards
‘managed release’ with careful appraisal of content and timing of release being examples of this process
in practice. This means there will inevitably be tension between the legal formalism of the Act itself and
the political rationality of the setting in which it was enacted and within which it is implemented.

The recommendations arising from this survey reflected these underlying issues, in particular:

–      That those responsible for FOI policy development in Scotland, seek ways of improving the top
       management leadership of FOI throughout Scottish Public Administration so that the democratic
       rationality behind FOI is both better understood and realised. In particular, the attention that we
       have drawn to the need to imbue public bodies with the understanding and vision that FOI is an
       overarching and crucial aspect of democratic society, including good public administration, should be
       acted upon.
–      That those responsible for FOI policy development in Scotland seek ways of improving opportunities
       for system learning about FOI and its implementation throughout Scottish Public Administration.

In the broader context of open/e-government, these type of findings require careful consideration in
terms of the governance and organisational systems needed to be put in place to manage a successful
and timely transition to the world of Gov 2.0. This is a large change agenda, going well beyond FOI and
with implications for the whole of the public sector and its interactions and relationships with the
political system, civil society and corporate Australia (Figure 1)
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                             Figure 1: Transformation Agenda for Connected Governance




7
    ibid, page 171

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Implementation – three broad phases
Delivering Open/Connected Government involves three (interrelated and often overlapping)
domains/phases:

–      Infrastructure: Creating an information infrastructure both within the public sector and across
       society at large, one based upon reliable and affordable Internet connectivity for citizens, businesses
       and all stakeholders in a given jurisdiction;
–      Integration: Using this new infrastructure within the public sector in order to share information
       better (internally and externally) and bundle, integrate, and deliver services through more efficient
       and citizen-centric governance models encompassing multiple delivery channels; and
–      Transformation: Pursuing service innovation and e-government across the community at large and
       democratic development through more networked governance patterns within government, across
       various government levels and amongst all sectors in a particular jurisdiction.

Successive surveys of progress in this field have confirmed that technology is increasingly resilient and
‘fit for purpose’ in delivering Gov 2.0. As noted above, success or failure is thus less a technological issue
and more a people issue – in particular the ability to change public service cultures and motivate public
sector workers to new ways of working, address employee concerns and provide adequately skilled and
competent management and leadership. 8




8
    Ibid, page 78

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3. Where is Australia on the Gov 2.0 journey?
An evaluation of Australia’s comparative and absolute performance in relation to Gov 2.0/e-government
is at Annex A. It draws on:

       The UK cabinet Office survey quoted in Exhibit 1 above.
       The 2008 UN Survey of 198 governments’ performance and potential to meet the challenges of
        e- government.
       EU Commission and academic evaluations of progress by Member States in implementing the
        letter and spirit of the 2003 public sector information (PSI) directive.

Summary of findings
Compared to its peer countries, Australia is generally well-placed in relation to the pre-conditions for
making the major transformation involved in shifting wholesale towards a citizen centred Gov 2.0
model:

       It has strong ICT infrastructure to underpin a more thorough going shift towards two way web
        based interaction, reflecting the country’s underlying economic strength;
       It already delivers a range of services via web and other ICT tools;
       It has begun to pioneer a range of approaches to “E-participation”; and
       It has a public service with a well developed performance culture and ethical standards which is
        an essential foundation for maintaining high standards of behaviour and outcomes while
        transiting to more transparent and interactive relations with Australian people and
        organisations.

 In terms of overall performance, this is a fast moving picture. No country can lay claim to having yet
 achieved the overall transformation in public sector culture, systems and processes required to deliver
 a fully articulated Gov 2.0 approach. The gap between promise and performance remains large in
 many countries.

 A range of evidence suggests that Scandinavian countries, the US and the UK generally lead in a range
 of critical components – FOI, publication and use/re-use of public sector information. Australia is
 currently lagging behind these countries in a range of critical areas. This provides a basis for learning
 from and avoiding the mistakes of the leaders, such as the UK and US. Some Australian agencies are
 clearly leaders but there is a very long way to go in relation to opening up access to the vast array of
 data that has been collected and/or developed using taxpayers’ money, for example currently residing
 within public sector research agencies and closely held via licensing/patent arrangements.

 The review of performance also underscores the challenges in refashioning attitudes, beliefs and
 processes across Australian government agencies that will: deliver a presumption of effective open



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Project 13: Gov 2.0 Governance and Institutions: Report by Heuris Partners 102 Cardigan Street Carlton Victoria
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 access to and re-use of information generated using taxpayer funded resources; and refashion the
 design and delivery of policies and programs to put citizens at the centre of these processes.

 From a governance/organisational perspective, there is no one compelling model that is likely to
 deliver an optimal mix of speed and depth of the transition. This reflects the very different historical,
 institutional and political contexts within which these countries operate. Common elements, however,
 appear to be very strong political support for the transition driven organisationally by strong central
 agency interest.

 This reflects where most countries are in the transition. Most government agencies are at an early
 stage in their transition/transformation. As such, as with FOI, the tendency will be to default to risk
 minimisation/avoidance and compliance, rather than calculated risk taking, experimentation,
 innovation and wide scale citizen engagement. In these circumstances, strong and concerted central
 leadership is required to secure the necessary transformation of bureaucratic cultures, norms,
 processes and incentives.




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  Project 13: Gov 2.0 Governance and Institutions: Report by Heuris Partners 102 Cardigan Street Carlton Victoria
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Exhibit 3: Citizen centred philosophy                                        4. Nature and scale of the public
Being truly citizen centred means placing the citizen at
the centre of the entire public service endeavour. This                         sector change implied by Gov
requires a meaningful commitment to actively                                    2.0
engaging and empowering people at all points along
the service delivery chain—from high-level program                           The profound nature of the change implied by a
and policy formulation all the way to the point of                           thoroughgoing shift to Gov 2.0 is foreshadowed
service delivery, and capturing feedback from the                            in broad terms in the recent Australian Federal
users of services. The public service also needs to be
                                                                             Government work on the future of the public
capable of effectively interacting with citizens with
unique or special needs or whose circumstances do not                        service. This focuses on a fundamental shift
fit what might be considered the norm.                                       towards “citizen centred philosophy (Exhibit 3)
                                                                             but also embraces other elements of a far
The capacity of services to meet citizen needs frequently
depends on the capacity of service delivery staff to
                                                                             reaching reform agenda (see Annex B).
respond in a timely fashion to issues that arise at the
delivery frontline. Another factor is the degree to which                    A more granular view of a citizen
frontline experience is captured and incorporated into                       focused approach
service delivery agency processes. New technologies are
                                                                             In considering the governance and accountability
bringing new opportunities to enhance feedback
between service delivery and policy or program design                        frameworks needed to deliver a move to Gov
areas—more than half of all Australians now interact                         2.0, it is helpful to understand at a more granular
with government using a variety of e-technologies—but                        level the implications of this public service model
a cultural shift among policy and service delivery
agencies is needed for these opportunities to be fully
                                                                             might be in terms of the behaviours, processes
exploited. (emphasis added)                                                  and organisational structures. Examples already
                                                                             exist of a more distributed and collaborative
Reform of Australian Government Administration:                              approach that chart a possible path towards a
Building the world’s best public service (Advisory
Group on Reform of Australian Government                                     fully fledged Gov 2.0 (Exhibit 4). In the context of
Administration, October 2009)                                                these models, Peter Shergold points to the
                                                                             nature of the shift needed to generalise these
                                                                             examples across a very much broader range of
                                                                             social programs:

                                                              “The ambition both of public services and of
                                                              community organisations should be to move from
                         being funders and deliverers to becoming brokers, facilitators and coaches. They should
                         seek to work not for, not with, but to the individuals that they support, helping the
                         disadvantaged to make informed decisions on their own behalf”9


  In a wide variety of social policy problems - indigenous disadvantage, disability, child health and welfare,
  aged care – the underlying pathologies involving multiple sources of challenge and disadvantage. These

  9
      Social Inclusion ‐ An Agenda For Citizen Empowerment ‐ Philanthropy (Professor Peter Shergold, October 2009)



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                                                                       do not respect organisational and budgetary
Exhibit 4: Co-production of effective program                          boundaries, whether within the Federal sphere or
outcomes                                                               between different levels of government and non-
In Western Australia, for more than two decades, people                government bodies. Indeed, the same challenge is
with a disability (and their families and carers) have been
given the opportunity to decide on how best the State                  manifest in most contemporary policy challenges
government can respond to their needs. Through a                       of any moment, a point acknowledged within the
network of Local Area Coordinators the Disability Services             APS.10
Commission works with persons with a disability to
organise their own budgets. The operating ethos, based                 Clearly, therefore, this proposed shift to citizen
on self‐advocacy, is that people with disabilities are in the
                                                                       focused       policy/program     design       and
best position to determine their own needs and goals.
In Victoria the new vehicle for the training subsidy                   implementation has implications for:
guarantee, Securing Jobs for Your Future, is firmly
focussed on putting the user in control. Traditionally                     Policy and resource management frameworks,
government has established fixed allocations for the                        which will increasingly need to be flexible and
training providers: in the future providers will be able
                                                                            responsive to meet needs that cross
select their own preferences from the range of courses
provided by TAFEs, private training providers and Adult                     traditional organisational boundaries.
Community Education organisations. The goal is to make                     The respective roles, responsibilities and
the training system responsive to individual needs, rather                  capabilities    of     senior    management/
than vice‐versa.
Similarly, the Commonwealth’s Department of Families,
                                                                            supervisors and frontline staff, with the latter
Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs has                      requiring and exercising more extensive levels
piloted a place‐based, community‐owned approach to                          of responsibility and authority to the joint
improving outcomes for young children. It’s called the                      development of solutions tailored to
Communities for Children program. Its aim is to provide as
much latitude as possible to a community, through                           individual needs and to commit the required
volunteering organisations, to develop innovative                           resources from a variety of agencies/sources.
interventions. Early results to engage hard‐to‐reach                       Intensive monitoring, assessment and real
families in 45 disadvantaged locations suggest positive
                                                                            time feedback and knowledge management
impacts, not least on the belief of parents that they felt
more effective, were more involved in community service                     systems to enable effective risk management
activities and had more positive perceptions of social                      and learning across functions/agencies.
cohesion.
At the same time, Centrelink is trialling a Personal Services          Some examples of this approach clearly exist and
Brokerage for Young Refugee Jobseekers initiative in                   the underlying themes are reflected in much of
Fairfield (Sydney) and Broadmeadows (Melbourne). The
goal of the program is to help participants tailor their own           the work of COAG on more effective Federalism.
individualised pathway of interventions and then to take               But in general the model represents significant
responsibility for achieving them.                                     challenge to many of the precepts on which
Social Inclusion: An Agenda or Citizen Empowerment                     Australian public sector has traditionally operated,
(Professor Peter Shergold, October 2009)
                                                                       The practical examples suggest very different
                                                                       approaches to a public service system which has

     10
        “The Australian Public Service (APS) is increasingly being tasked with solving very complex policy problems. Some of these
     policy issues are so complex they have been called ‘wicked’ problems. The term ‘wicked’ in this context is used, not in the sense
     of evil, but rather as an issue highly resistant to resolution. Successfully solving or at least managing these wicked policy
     problems requires a reassessment of some of the traditional ways of working and solving problems in the APS. They challenge
     our governance structures, our skills base and our organisational capacity.” Tackling Wicked Problems: A Public Policy
     Perspective (Australian Public Service Commission, 2007)

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                                                                         been characterised by “by hierarchical
Exhibit 5: Devolved decision-making                          and
distributed intelligence – the military                                  authority, administrative rigidity and a strong
At the center of Army transformation efforts stands the                  culture of control”.11
non-commissioned officer. He leads our soldiers into
21st-century battle. He cares for, trains, and directs our               Lessons from the front line – US Army
soldiers in peace and in war. He is the primary                          This last quote could, on the face of it, be most
implementer of our new doctrine and concepts. He                         readily applied to the military. It is interesting
commands the small units maneuvering our new
platforms and engaging the enemy with our new                            to reflect, however, on the degree to which
weapons systems. He is the face of the American people                   what arguably is one of the most hierarchical
as he interacts with indigenous people on                                of organisations:
counterinsurgency battlefields. An effective leadership
development model for the U.S. Army non-commissioned                         Delegates to relatively junior but highly
officer waging 21st-century warfare must define the
threat correctly, develop leaders of character, and
                                                                              trained      people      (non-commissioned
implement knowledge management strategies for                                 officers - NCOs) very high levels of
disseminating current and emerging doctrine.                                  responsibility for mission critical decisions
The capstone of Army doctrine, FM 3-0, Full Spectrum                          in the field - for the safety and welfare of
Operations, initiated a doctrinal revolution within the
Army that is still generating change. Many of today’s                         troops under their command, threat
senior NCOs learned doctrine from painstaking study of                        assessment in relation to civilian
dog-eared paper manuals by highlighting key passages                          populations and/or potential insurgents
and making notes in the margins. The shelf life of these                      and the deployment of expensive and
doctrinal publications ordinarily lasted five years. Today,
two unique challenges have emerged to complicate the                          highly lethal weapons systems from all
dissemination of Army doctrine: the advent of paperless                       arms of the forces; and
references and the fluid nature of current doctrine itself.                  Utilises real time technology to support
Together, these two factors affect the transmittal of
                                                                              knowledge management, learning and
doctrinal knowledge and require a fresh look at how
NCOs obtain and retain doctrinal knowledge.                                   problem solving in the field (Exhibit 5).
Professional online forums such as the Battle Command
Knowledge System’s NCO Net hold enormous potential                       On reflection, this is not surprising. In many
for enabling knowledge management for our NCO                            situations, effective decision-making can only
leadership. NCO Net provides a secure, professionally                    be made at a local level, albeit within a high
moderated discussion and exchange forum for NCOs
working out the problems facing our Army at war today.                   level     strategic    framework      set   at
NCOs share questions and problems as well as solutions,                  command/political level (it is often poorly
experiences, and advice for fellow NCOs. NCO Net has                     defined strategic objectives that bedevils on
helped thousands of non-commissioned officers in
                                                                         the      ground       implementation).     The
fielding assistance with current issues in near real time.
These forums provide a way of discussing doctrine in                     consequences of misjudgements and/or
theory as well as applied and expanded doctrine as                       failure to learn and adapt in these
members share their own tactics, techniques, and                         environments are transparent and potentially
procedures. Current membership in NCO Net tops 37,000
                                                                         deadly.
voluntary participants.
                                       st
Developing NCO leaders for the 21 Century, Master
Sgt John Proctor, US Army (Military Review,                              The pressures on public service for change and
September/October 2009)                                                  adaptation, while significant, are less
                                                                         immediately critical in their impact. But the

11
     “Been there, done that, still hoping for more” Professor Peter Shergold (Griffith Review, May 2009, page 7)

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pivotal role of the NCO described in the exhibit provides an interesting model for thinking about the
requirements for local, citizen focused public services.

And not just a public sector challenge
Finally, from a governance perspective, governments are not alone in facing the need to shift their
philosophy and approach to their core functions. Analysis of the challenges facing the private sector
point to very similar dynamics, driven by:

           Hyper-competition and relentless pressure on margins, with the returns on “incrementalism”
            falling while the premium on innovation is rapidly increasing.
           The Internet, with its wide range of new tools for managing collaboration. In the past, nothing
            could be done at scale without extensive bureaucratic structures. Now thousands of people can
            collaborate around the world online with little in the way of formal hierarchy or management
            structures: “these new Web-based tools will allow hierarchies to form around natural leaders
            rather than beneath the individuals who have been given formal, hierarchical appointments”.12
           The values and attitudes of people now entering the work force reflecting beliefs that: ideas
            should compete on a level playing field (rather than determined by hierarchy); all information
            should be accessible; and that people should be measured on the basis of their contributions,
            not their credentials/position.13

Against this background the prognosis for all organizations (private or public) is the need to change,
deeply and continually, and at an accelerating pace. Most organizations, however, are wired to limit
change – default practices and structures favour the status quo over change and renewal.

Implications for governance of Gov 2.0 implementation
This brief, more granular review of the broad Gov 2.0 landscape has important implications for
governance in its critical implementation phase. In summary,

      Information disclosure and re-use are necessary but not sufficient to deliver the transformation
       required in public sector agencies (and the people and organisations with whom they interact).
      Technology is a key enabler to which careful attention needs to be paid, but is unlikely to be a major
       impediment to delivery.
      The large part of the task is about refashioning large elements of the APS culture, structures and
       processes to deliver more interactive, citizen focussed policies, programs and outcomes.

Elements of the necessary change agenda are in play but the pervasive and deep nature of the change
agenda point to the need for clear accountability for overall delivery and role clarity amongst the many
agencies with responsibilities for the constituent parts of the change agenda. It is to this issue the report
now turns.



12
     Three forces that will transform management Gary Hamel 26 February 2009 (see Annex C for article in full)
13
     Ibid

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5. Governance and Organisational Design for Gov 2.0

The proposed landscape

Figure 2 summarises the various critical roles that existing agencies and the proposed Information
Commissioner will play in addressing the Gov 2.0 delivery agenda. It may not be comprehensive in
relation to all agencies with an interest (e.g. the Audit Office clearly has an interest). It also deliberately
excludes Ministers and the Parliament who both have a major interest in delivery and performance but
are deemed to be outside the remit of this report.

Even with these limitations, however, the range of interest and accountabilities engaged is very broad.
This obviously reflects the breadth of the cultural change agenda. It also reflects the stage in the change
process where both behaviours and ownership are not yet embedded in the line and have yet to
become “the way we do things round here”. In the meantime, concerted effort from a range of agencies
at the centre of government is needed to drive the required cultural and institutional shifts.14

The very breadth of interests engaged does, however, give rise to two key questions:

1. Who within government at a departmental/agency level owns and is ultimately accountable for
   delivery of the broad Gov 2.0 agenda after the Taskforce winds up in December 2009?
2. Are existing roles and responsibilities clear for critical elements of delivery of Gov 2.0 and are their
   any roles that are missing or that require strengthening/clearer specification?




14
   Similar approaches have been adopted in relation to a range of other cross cutting issues at Commonwealth and State level,
e.g. in relation to gender and other equity issues, climate change, sustainable development which have progressed from central
agency pre-occupations towards broad accountability across line agencies. .

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                              Figure 2: Gov 2.0 - entities, roles and responsibilities

                                                                    Roles
Agencies/Entities          Policy/resource               Program            Advice/advocacy         Audit/Public
                              allocation                 delivery                                 reporting/Other
Gov. 2.0 Taskforce     Yes – time limited           No                      Yes – time limited   No
Information            Yes                          No?                     Yes – to agencies    Yes – on
Commissioner                                                                and the public       performance of
                                                                                                 departments &
                                                                                                 agencies against
                                                                                                 FOI Act
                                                                                                 requirements for
                                                                                                 information plans
DOF/AGIMO              Yes – on ICT                 Yes - e.g. cross        Yes – to agencies    Yes , e.g.
                       architecture, policies       government              on ICT issues        Interacting with
                       and resources                activities                                   Government
                                                    Responsive                                   Australians' use
                                                    Government A                                 and satisfaction
                                                    New Service                                  with e-
                                                    Agenda                                       government
                                                                                                 services—2008
PM&C                   Yes - Reform of              Yes –                   No?                  Yes? – e.g. in
                       Australian                   departmental                                 respect of broad
                       Government                   performance                                  public service
                       Administration:              information in                               reform outcomes
                       Building the world’s         relation to
                       best public service          programs and
                                                    “system health”
Public Service         Yes – culture and            Yes – people            Yes – to agencies    Yes – State of the
Commissioner           people policies for the      development             on people/culture    Service Reports
                       APS for Gov 2.0                                      issues
National Archives      Yes – records                Yes – national          Yes                  Yes –
                       management/archives          collections                                  departmental
                       policies                                                                  record keeping
                                                                                                 practices
Line departments       Yes – topic specific         Yes – front line        No                   Yes – in respect
& agencies             input                        delivery of                                  of own
                                                    “content”                                    performance via
                                                                                                 Annual Reports
                                                                                                 etc
Administrative         No                           No                      No                   Hearings on
Appeals Tribunal                                                                                 disputed FOI
(AAT)                                                                                            requests




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Ownership and accountability for Gov 2.0
Responsibility for crucial elements of the agenda may be shared or delegated. From a Government and
broader societal viewpoint, someone within the senior echelons of the APS has to be accountable to the
Government for overall delivery. As is clear from the analysis in sections 3-4 above, Gov 2.0 is not at
bottom about technology or even ubiquitous access and use of public sector information. It is about a
fundamentally different way of approaching much of the business of government. As such, it is highly
desirable that one agency/executive carries ultimate accountability and one with the skill sets and
leverage required to prosecute successfully and embed the change agenda across the APS.

Options
The source material underpinning Figure 2 does not give a clear indication of which agency/body will
have final accountability for the change process required to deliver Gov 2.0. On the face of it, the
candidates for single point accountability post the Taskforce disbandment are:
– The Information Commissioner
– The Chief Executive of AGIMO
– The Public Service Commissioner
– The Head of PM&C
Summarised below are the arguments for and against assigning the lead roles to these positions (Figure
3).

                              Figure 3: Lead accountability for Gov 2.0 -evaluation

Lead accountability                            Pro                                                     Con
The Information            Powerful new role in delivering intent of             Information is only part of Gov 2.0 agenda
Commissioner                Government information legislation                    Excludes critical elements in relation to
                                                                                   management culture
                                                                                  Auditor and coach roles yet be defined
                                                                                   and resolved
The Chief Executive of     Deputy Head of Taskforce so continuity                ICT/ technical issues not central
AGIMO                       assured                                                challenge; cultural, incentive issues
                           AGIMO central player in platforms and                  outside AGIMO scope
                            standards to underpin Gov 2.0                         AGIMO role involves audit and resource
                                                                                   allocation which may intrude on
                                                                                   advocate/coach role
The Public Service        Culture ,behaviour, incentives critical part of        Only owns part of the agenda (albeit a
Commissioner               PSC role                                                critical one)
                          Part of PM&C portfolio, feeding naturally into         Less impact and power than PM&C
                           broad reform agenda
                          Relieves head of PM&C of workload
Head of PM&C              Overall responsibility for public service            Risk of overload
                           system performance – can be integrated with
                           broader reform agenda
                          Consistent with transformational stage of
                           development
                          Ability to influence delivery via critical senior
                           appointments


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                                                        In summary, on the basis of the information currently to
Exhibit 6: The UK Cabinet Office Digital                hand:
Engagement Blog
The UK Cabinet Office has established a Digital                The Information Commissioner has only part of
Engagement Team to champion implementation of                   the agenda and, for the immediate future, the
the recommendations of the Power of Information
                                                                Commissioner’s resources remit and skill sets
Taskforce Report. The Team states as “key
themes” for its work are:                                       would unlikely to be commensurate with
 open information - To have an effective voice,                managing the breadth of the change agenda
  people need to be able to understand what is                  required.
  going on in their public services; government will
                                                               AGIMO has a focused role and power base that
  publish information about public services in ways
  that are easy to find, use, and re-use.                       does not extend into critical issues of public
 open feedback - The public should have a fair say             service culture and leadership.
  about their services. We need more services like             The Public Service Commissioner has a key role
  NHS Choices or www.publicexperience.com to
  provide direct feedback to the Innovation Council.
                                                                and potential for delegated authority from the
 open conversation - We will promote greater                   head of PM&C for day to day to day
  engagement through more interactive online                    management/delivery of the change agenda.
  consultation and collaboration. We will also
  empower professionals to be active on online peer     Suggested approach
  support networks in their area of work.               The above analysis suggests single point accountability
 open innovation - We will promote innovation in
  online public services to respond to changing
                                                        for this stage in the transformation process should
  expectations – bringing the concepts behind Show      ideally rest with the Secretary of PM&C, reflecting the
  Us A Better Way into mainstream government            far reaching nature of the agenda, the multifaceted
  practice.                                             nature of the issues and the department’s leadership on
                                                        the reform program for the Australian Public Service.



    The Secretary’s role could be supported by the type of unit established by the UK Government following
    the completion of its Power of Information Taskforce (Exhibit 6). This unit could both serve as a
    secretariat function and a ginger group within government for innovation etc, supporting the
    Information Commissioner in extending the boundaries of departmental performance beyond
    compliance with the FOI legislation.

    As with a range of other central initiatives run out of PM&C, this activity could be strictly time limited
    (say 18-24 months), with the intention of substantively “mainstreaming” the issue into line agencies
    and the Information Commissioner (or other appropriate entity) within this timeframe.




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                                                      Clarifying roles and responsibilities
Exhibit 7: Extracts from Google submission
to the Taskforce                                      The Information Commissioner and other players
                                                      A critical issue confronting the delivery of Gov 2.0 is the
The Information Commissioner, after appropriate       detailed role and performance of the Information
consultation    (for    example,       with    the    Commissioner, particularly in relation to leading/driving
Commonwealth Chief Information Officer and
AGIMO), might be empowered to issue policy            enhanced standards of transparency and openness in
guidance to departments and agencies in               relation to information held by government agencies
relation to disclosure and publication of             (see Annex D for a summary of the relevant legislation
categories of information held by departments
                                                      and proposed roles.)
and agencies as specified in that policy guidance,
not only those categories of operational and
                                                      As noted above, in the absence of clear leadership and
related information as referred to in clause 8 of
the exposure draft FOI Bill.                          positive direction, experience with FOI across OECD
                                                      countries has been a strong tendency towards a
Development of this culture [of openness,             compliance/black letter approach. Evidence presented
disclosure] requires a number of things,
including:                                            to the Taskforce has stressed the desirability for
_ education and empowerment of data owners            policies, standards and behaviours that go well beyond
within Government to facilitate broader grants        the minimum compliance required under the revised
of access;                                            FOI/Information Commissioner legislation (Exhibit 7 –
_ appropriate rewards and incentives for
Government departments and agencies that              Google submission).
implement best practice initiatives that
demonstrate openness and access in action and         A number of issues arise in relation to the internal
for effective working with third parties that seek    consistency and deliverability of the Commissioner’s
to make transformative or other value added           roles as currently specified. These currently fall into at
users of Government information. Champions
should be recognised;
                                                      least five distinct categories
_ a driving of initiatives from Ministers down,
with central setting (by the proposed Information         i.A source of innovation policy advice to
Commissioner) of whole of government policies               Government on ways to extend the role of
and guidelines on openness and access by                    information disclosure to the public benefit.
Government departments, agencies and                   ii.  A source of technical advice on the collection,
authorities, and oversight by the proposed                  use, disclosure, management, administration or
Information     Commissioner      of    individual          storage of, or accessibility to information held
department, authority and agency policies                   by the Government
                                                      iii.  An accountability/audit mechanism in relation
                                                            to agencies legislated disclosure requirements –
           put crudely to police agency compliance with the legislation.
    iv.    An advocacy role with agencies, encouraging them to go beyond the legislated disclosure
     v.    A central point of contact with the public on government information matters.

  On the face of it, there is potential for significant tension between an audit/accountability role (item iii)
  and that of advocate/coach in support of a beyond compliance approach and culture (item iv). It is also

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                                                              not clear how easy it might be to play honest
Exhibit 8: AGIMO Reporting and Coordination                   broker between public interests in maximal
The Special Minister of State, through the Australian         disclosure and agency concerns (real or
Government        Information     Management         Office   imagined) about the cost, practicability or
(AGIMO), oversees and coordinates implementation of
                                                              presentational exposures arising from increased
ICT strategies and track progress, in consultation with
the Strategy Committee (IMSC) and the Chief                   transparency and openness (iii & v).
Information Officer Committee (CIOC). The Minister
also liaises with the states and territories through          There are also critical issues to be addressed in
the Online and Communications Council (OCC) to                relation to the interface between AGIMO and
ensure a fully national approach.                             the Commissioner in relation to “systems” issues
AGIMO is supported by, and supports, the Information
Management Strategy Committee (IMSC), the Chief               arising under item ii.
Information Officer Committee (CIOC), the Cross
Jurisdictional Chief Information Officer Committee            Compared with other countries well advanced
(CJCIOC), and the Online and Communications Council           with preparations for Gov 2.0/e-government
(OCC).                                                        path this mixture of roles looks on the face of it
                                                              to be unusual, if not unique.

                                                              Assuming no change in the current remit, then
                                                              establishing the right balance will be an
                                                              interesting challenge for the Commissioner and
                                                              his/her staff. Clearly, any arrangement can be
                                                              made to work with both goodwill and clarity
                                                              around precise roles and responsibilities.

Source AGIMO website                                          An alternative, structural approach, however,
                                                              might be to adopt something akin to the UK
                                                              model. This would involve:

    focusing the Commissioner role on compliance, auditing and reporting; and
    vesting the advocacy, systems and policy role with National Archives, which could also press forward
     with the development and delivery of a central data website as proposed in the Google submission.
     (This unit could also provide continuity of function once the proposed follow on unit from the
     Taskforce disbands since National Archives is a PM&C portfolio agency.)

Effective coordination on Gov 2.0 policy and delivery
Maintaining and increasing momentum across government following completion of the Taskforce’s work
will be critical to delivering the transformational changes needed to deliver major Gov 2.0 within a
reasonable timeframe (say 18-24 months). The post Taskforce coordination arrangements appear to
focus around:

         the role of the Information Commissioner who will be assisted by an advisory committee
          comprised of senior officers across key agencies ( PM&C Companion Guide to Freedom of
          Information Reform); and


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       the coordination arrangements surrounding AGIMO’s role in relation to ICT (see Exhibit 8).

The emphasis in this report on cultural and behavioural change in the public service (as opposed to
technologies etc) as the key driver of Gov 2.0. suggests the need for a much more direct and powerful
link between this agenda and public sector reform generally. An important element of this would be
delivered if lead accountability were transferred to PM&C (as suggested above).

Regardless of this, however, it would be desirable to raise the status of this agenda by:

      establishing an implementation taskforce chaired by the Secretary of PM&C (or one of his
       deputies or the Public Service Commissioner), charged with overseeing delivery of the agenda
       over the next 12-18 months.
      by forming a sub-committee of the Advisory Group on Public Sector Reform to address delivery
       of Gov 2.0 to ensure that developments in this area are fully integrated into the broader reform
       agenda.




____________________________________________________




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Annex A: Evaluation of Australian progress towards Gov 2.0 in an
international context

UN 2008 Survey
The most comprehensive survey available of comparative government performance is prepared on a
regular basis by the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Division for Public Administration
and Development Management. In the 2008 Survey, in terms of overall performance, the e-government
readiness index is a composite index comprising a web measure index (measuring government presence
on line), a telecommunication infrastructure index (how good is the infrastructure available to deliver e-
services) and the human capital index (how well equipped are people to derive benefits from services in
relation to literacy/education etc).

Australia ranked eighth in the composite index, just below Canada but above France and the UK (ninth
and tenth respectively) – Figure A115. Sweden ranked first (0.9157), followed by Denmark (0.9134) and
Norway (0.8921). The United States (0.8644) was fourth.

The survey indicated that a large part of the success of the European countries has been their
investment in infrastructure and connectivity, most notably in broadband infrastructure. In terms of
citizen engagement, the United States scored the highest on the e-participation index. This was primarily
due to its strength in e-information and e-consultation, which enabled its citizens to be more interactive
with their government. It was closely followed by the Republic of Korea (0.9773), which performed
extremely well in the e-consultation assessment. Denmark (0.9318) and France (0.9318) were tied for
third place (this is discussed in more detail below).

         Figure A1: E Government readiness index: top 20 countries (source: UN E Government Survey 2008)




15
     Ibid page 20

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The UN Survey provides more fine grained analysis of different aspects of country performance that
generally point to Australia being among the leading countries in relation to comparative performance
in relation to a number of important dimensions of performance:

        Service delivery via e-Government, where Australia ranks ninth (Figure A2).

                                     Figure A2: Delivery via web based services




          E-participation: an assessment of government to citizen interaction and inclusion, by assessing
           the extent to which governments proactively solicit citizen input. In Figure A3, this is measured
           on three dimensions for the top seven countries:
         i.    E-information assesses national websites and portals to determine if governments are
               providing the basic information that serves as the foundation for citizen participation.
               Australia scored the highest on the e-information assessment followed by the Republic of
               Korea and the United States of America.
        ii.    E-Consultation - the interactive methods employed to solicit citizen opinion, feedback and
               input, such as online channels, including informal polls, bulletin boards, chat rooms/instant
               messaging and weblogs (blogs), as well as formal online consultation. New Zealand and the


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             United States of America scored the highest in the e-consultation section. Australia ranks
             seventh.
      iii.   E-Decision-Making - the extent of a government’s commitment to e-participation, as
             evidenced by the definitive acknowledgement of an individual citizen’s input and by a stated
             commitment to take it into account when making decisions. The Republic of Korea is the
             leader in this assessment, followed by Denmark and France, with Australia ranking sixth.

                                         Figure A3: E- participation rankings




Finally, to give a sense of the dynamic nature of the change process across governments, the UN analysis
provides comparative 2005 and 2008 data on e-participation. Figure A4 below shows the changes in
relative rankings for the top twenty performers in the 2008 survey. On this index, Australia has moved
up four places since 2005, from ninth to fifth overall. A notable omission from this top twenty is the UK
(ranked 24th in 2008, down from first in 2005). This, however, is mainly due to the migration of e-
participation products and services from its national portal to local government portals: the UN e-
participation survey does not take into account regional and local portals or websites, but only national
portals or websites and selected ministries.

                                Figure A4: e- participation ranking change 2005-




               2008


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UN Survey findings and governance/organisational design & processes

Role of Chief Information Officer and central agencies
The survey noted emergence and importance of a Chief Information Officer (CIO) function required in
the public sector due to the advent of e-government. Initially these roles ranged across a spectrum from
‘cheerleader’ and ‘collaborator’ to ‘controller’ and ‘commander’. The former approach implies weak
central authority in terms of formalized powers, but one involving negotiated outcomes with
departments and agencies to achieve collective aims. The latter involves a more centralized model of
controlling resources and decision-making aimed at achieving interoperability and government-wide
readiness and capacities. The Survey notes that achieving balance between decentralized innovation
and flexibility on the one hand, and centralized leadership and coordination on the other, has become
the hallmark of the CIO’s position within governments:

         Often positioned within a central agency of government (with some form of management and
         expenditure oversight authority for government as a whole), the CIO has become the de facto
         Head of e-government strategy in many jurisdictions.16

The Survey also points to a need for developing a new balance between hierarchy and flexibility,
between vertical and horizontal dimensions of accountability. In this respect, it emphasise the need for
better central agency expertise and new mechanisms to reconcile vertical and horizontal
accountabilities to deliver effective e-government, i.e.:

         … a management culture that relies less on command and control and more on financial
         incentives, continual monitoring and ongoing consultation and engagement. Performance
         reviews and agreements that more explicitly capture the need to work horizontally could also go
         some way toward initiating a cultural shift.17

EU governance perspectives - public sector information (PSI) directive18
The EU PSI Directive enhances the right to PSI re-use, laying down transparency requirements, setting an
upper limit on charges and establishing fair competition rules in relation to PSI. The underlying purpose
is to foster the creation of EU-wide information products and services based on public sector
information. The Directive encourages Member States to make as much information available for re-use
as possible. Ultimately, it targets a change of culture in the public sector, creating a favourable
environment for the re-use of its information assets. As such it forms a critical element in delivering e-
government.




16
   Ibid, page 76
17
   This is an issue that has been recognised in a range of contexts – see for example Tackling Wicked Problems
A Public Policy Perspective (Australian Public Service Commission, 2007)
18
   Commission staff working document accompanying document to the communication from the commission to the European
Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions on the re-use of
Public Sector Information – Review of Directive 2003/98/EC – [COM(2009) 212 final]

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 3053 ABN 59 High performing PSI/e-Governance
 Exhibit A1: 097 844 445
 systems
 US                                                            National PSI bodies/dispute settlement
 Besides US having one of the most utilized FOIA
                                                               bodies
 legislation in the world, there are extensive possibilities
 for the reuse of public sector information. Citizens and      The Commission evaluation indicates that some
 businesses enjoy a broad right to electronically access       Member States have established clear
 this information and have extensive possibilities to          responsibilities      in      certain     government
 reuse it for commercial purposes. All these aspects have
 determined some authors to argue that there is no             departments as regards the access to and re-use
 policy in place in any of the EU Member States with the       of PSI. This is particularly the case of the Office of
 simplicity and clarity of that of the US Federal              Public Sector Information (OPSI), which operates
 Government. The main characteristics of the access and
 reuse model in place in the US include:                       from within the National Archives in the UK (part
  a strong freedom of information law,                        of the Department of Justice portfolio). OPSI
  no government copyright, fees limited to recouping          provides a wide range of services to the public,
   the cost of dissemination, and
  no restrictions on reuse.
                                                               information industry, government and the wider
 A circular issued by the Office of Management and             public sector relating to finding, using, sharing and
 Budget, US Federal Government (OMB, Circular no. A-           trading information. OPSI has UK-wide policy
 130) states government information is a valuable
 national resource, and the economic benefits to society
                                                               responsibility across government for the re-use of
 are maximized when government information is                  public sector information. OPSI is and has been at
 available in a timely and equitable manner to all.            the heart of information policy, setting standards,
The OMB establishes as guiding principle for federal
 agencies that:
                                                               delivering access, becoming a redress mechanism
  all public information be actively disseminated             body and encouraging the re-use of public sector
   without imposing restrictions or conditions,                information. In its two years of existence OPSI
  access should involve costs only to the extent that
                                                               has:
   those cover expenses of dissemination; and
  it establishes that advantage should be taken of the
   various dissemination channels (e.g. private and                   published a range of guidance material,
   academic) as well as of the available technologies                  which sets out step-by-step what public
   (including Internet, satellite downcast, etc).                      sector organisations need to do to meet
 UK
 The UK experience with creating a national framework                  their responsibilities;
 for the reuse of PSI appears to be one of the most                   contacted over 400 public sector
 relevant ones among the Member States. The UK                         organisations to spread awareness and
 currently holds a significant lead on the ePSIplus
 scorecard with 15 points out of a total 20 to date                    raise standards;
 standing well above the average score of 3.2 across all              introduced the Information Fair Trader
 Member States (OPSI, 2008).
                                                                       Scheme (IFTS), IFTS Online, and Click-Use
 There are several unique aspects to the UK experience
 with the reuse of PSI. One initiative that could be                   Licensing, which set standards and make
 regarded as a best practice refers to the creation by the             it easier to re-use PSI;
 central government of a national office in charge with
                                                                      investigated a number of complaints
 several of the enforcement aspects of the reuse law.
 The literature points out that the creation of national               against public sector information holders,
 offices could better advance the proper implementation                leading to licensing improvements;
 of PSI reuse legislation and also contribute towards
                                                                      introduced a PSI mediation scheme,
 raising awareness. In the UK, the Office of Public Sector
 Information (OPSI) provides online access to UK                       complementary to the redress body they
 legislation. It also licenses the reuse of Crown copyright            represent; and set up a website with PSI
 material, manages the Information Fair Trader Scheme,
                                                                       information, which has become one of the
 maintains the Government's Information Asset Register
            10 advice and guidance on in the UK.
 and provides most visited websites official publishing
 and Crown copyright.

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                                                           Both the UK/OPSI and US models have also been the
 Exhibit A2: Citizen centred philosophy                    subject of favourable comment in a comparative
 Being truly citizen centred means placing the             study of EU PSI policies and practices published in
 citizen at the centre of the entire public service        the European Integration online papers series –
 endeavour. This requires a meaningful                     Exhibit A1. 19 They also continue to benefit from
 commitment to actively engaging and                       strong central leadership:
 empowering people at all points along the                 – in the UK via the formation of the UK Cabinet
 service delivery chain—from high-level
 program and policy formulation all the way to                 Office Digital Engagement Blog (see below)
 the point of service delivery, and capturing              – in the US by being part of the much wider
 feedback from the users of services. The public               Obama Open Government initiative
 service also needs to be capable of effectively
 interacting with citizens with unique or special
 needs or whose circumstances do not fit what              Summary of findings
 might be considered the norm.
                                                           Compared to its peer countries, Australia is generally
 The capacity of services to meet citizen needs            well-placed in relation to the pre-conditions for
 frequently depends on the capacity of service             making the major transformation involved in shifting
 delivery staff to respond in a timely fashion to          wholesale towards a citizen centred Gov 2.0 model:
 issues that arise at the delivery frontline.
 Another factor is the degree to which frontline           – It has strong ICT infrastructure to underpin a more
 experience is captured and incorporated into
 service delivery agency processes. New
                                                             thorough going shift towards two way web based
 technologies are bringing new opportunities to              interaction, reflecting the country’s underlying
 enhance feedback between service delivery and               economic strength;
 policy or program design areas—more than half             – It already delivers a range of services via web and
 of all Australians now interact with government
 using a variety of e-technologies—but a cultural            other ICT tools;
 shift among policy and service delivery                   – It has begun to pioneer a range of approaches to
 agencies is needed for these opportunities to               “E-participation”; and
 be fully exploited. (emphasis added)
                                                           – It has a public service with a well developed
 Reform       of     Australian     Government               performance culture and ethical standards which is
 Administration: Building the world’s best public            an essential foundation for maintaining high
 service (Advisory Group on Reform of Australian             standards of behaviour and outcomes while
 Government Administration, October 2009)
                                                             transiting to more transparent and interactive
                                                             relations with Australian people and organisations.

                                                       In terms of overall performance, this is a fast moving
                                                       picture. No country can lay claim to having yet
     achieved the overall transformation in public sector culture, systems and processes required to deliver
     a fully articulated Gov 2.0 approach. The gap between promise and performance remains large in
     many countries.

     A range of evidence suggests that Scandinavian countries, the US and the UK generally lead in a range
     of critical components – FOI, publication and use/re-use of public sector information. Australia is

19
  Reusing Public Sector Information - Policy Choices and Experiences in some of the Member States with an emphasis on the
Case of Romania Dragos, Dacian C.; Neamtu, Bogdana August 2009

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 currently lagging behind these countries in a range of critical areas but this provides a basis for
 learning from and avoiding the mistakes of the leaders, such as the UK and US.

 From a governance/organisational perspective, there is, however, no one compelling model that is
 likely to deliver an optimal mix of speed and depth of the transition. This reflects the very different
 historical, institutional and political contexts within which these countries operate. Common
 elements, however, appear to be very strong political support for the transition driven organisationally
 by strong central agency interest.

 This reflects where most countries are in the transition. Most government agencies are at an early
 stage in their transition/transformation. As such, are likely to default to risk minimisation/avoidance
 and compliance, rather than calculated risk taking, experimentation, innovation and wide scale citizen
 engagement. In these circumstances, strong and concerted central leadership is required to secure the
 necessary transformation of bureaucratic cultures, norms, processes and incentives. The scale of this
 challenge is reflected in recent Australian Federal Government work on the future of the public service
 (Exhibit A2).




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Annex B: Extracts from “Reform of Australian Government
Administration: Building the world’s best public service”
Canberra, October 2009

It should also be acknowledged that a reform agenda of this scale is likely to take some time to
implement. Whilst any rearticulation of values and beliefs, and even changes to structures and
legislation, can occur quickly, more fundamental changes to capability, culture and entrenched
processes are likely to require significant time and effort to fully implement. Our challenge is to devise a
plan that is forward looking and long term in scope. In this context, we can afford to be ambitious.

The APS is the largest component of the Australian Government workforce. With a workforce of 160,011
people divided among 97 agencies,
In such a large organisation, it is difficult to make overarching judgements about views and attitudes.
However, the most recent employee survey (2008) for the Australian Public Service Commissioner’s
State of the Service Report, gives us an insight into some of the prevailing sentiments that exist amongst
many public servants:
   • the great majority of employees (82%) report they are motivated to do their best possible work
   • almost all employees (96%) indicate they are willing to put in extra effort to get the job done
   • less than half of employees (45%) agreed their agency was well-managed
   • the proportion of employees who agreed they were proud to work in the APS and their agency was
       79% and 71% respectively
   • the primary identification of 60% of APS employees is with their agency specifically, rather than to
       the APS more broadly
   • the three most important job satisfaction attributes for APS employees were:
          --good working relationships (86% of relevant employees satisfied)
          --flexible working arrangements (86% of relevant employees satisfied)
          --salary (60% of relevant employees satisfied).

The best public service in the world, unified in pursuing excellence and putting Australia and Australians
at the centre of everything we do
Need to take real action
The Prime Minister has stated that he expects the public service to be characterised by excellence in
policy innovation, policy creativity, policy contestability and long-term policy planning, as well as a
commitment to innovation and creativity in how it delivers services to the Australian community. The
Prime Minister has also spoken of the Government’s vision for the APS as having the following seven
elements:
   1. reinvigoration of the Westminster tradition of an independent public service with merit-based
         selection and continuity of employment between governments
   2. a professionalised public service committed to excellence
   3. evidence-based policy making processes as part of a robust culture of policy contestability


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  4. enhanced strategic policy capability
  5. strengthened integrity and accountability
  6. broadened participation in government through inclusive policy processes
  7. a contemporary view of service delivery emphasising both effectiveness and efficiency.

  citizen centric philosophy—enabling citizens’ access to government, improving consultation and
      providing a citizen centred approach to service delivery
  • whole-of-government and whole-of-public-service ethos—recognising the increasing need to work
      across traditional boundaries to deliver results and the importance of embedding a unified ethos
      across the public service
  • transparency and accountability—including making more government data and information
      available     to     the     public    and      a     commitment      to   greater     openness

Innovation and integration with the frontline
The ability to be innovative is a crucial capability when it comes to providing strategic policy advice to
government. The State of the Service Report 2007–08 revealed most APS employees to be somewhat
negative about the capacity of their agencies to be innovative. There is also a wide divergence of views
on this subject between SES and non-SES employees. Non-SES staff were far less positive than their
senior colleagues about the support and encouragement they received for taking innovative
approaches.

Engaging with risk
The APS needs to nurture a culture where new, innovative and creative policies are explored and
   experimented with. To make this happen, the APS needs to have greater tolerance for failure when it
   occurs as a result of carefully considered risk taking. Rather than punishing failure, the APS must
   ensure it learns from mistakes and uses those lessons to enhance and shape better policies for the
   future.
As noted earlier, fostering innovation is often a more challenging task for the public sector than the
private sector, especially given the potentially significant consequences of failure.
Current attitudes towards risk in many parts of the APS have been linked to the current accountability
and performance management arrangements in place. These arrangements may need to be re-
examined in terms of the scope they provide for public servants and agencies to take acceptable risks as
they      push      the      boundaries         of      policy    in   pursuit      of      innovation.
  Reviews to assess agency capability on several dimensions, including leadership and workforce
     capability, strategic policy and implementation capability and ability to meet government
     expectations. We can learn from other countries, such as the United Kingdom, Canada and New
     Zealand, which are already using or trialling similar approaches.
  • Individual performance arrangements that are aligned with any revised budget framework, agency
     capability review processes, and effective implementation. For senior leaders in particular,
     performance in supporting a more collaborative and innovative culture could be assessed and
     personal contributions to building the policy making and implementation capabilities of their
     agencies                                                                                measured.



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Annex C: Three forces that will transform management
By Gary Hamel 26 February 2009

http://whatmatters.mckinseydigital.com/organization/three-forces-that-will-transform-
management

The technology of management—the tools and techniques we use to mobilize human effort—is
likely to change dramatically over the next few years. Modern management was invented a century
ago to solve one overriding problem: how to organize work at scale with ever-increasing
productivity. This problem is still important, but organizations now confront a new set of challenges,
which cannot be solved with Industrial Age management practices and structures.

Today, the overriding problem for every organization is how to change, deeply and continually, and
at an accelerating pace. We live in a world where change is “shaken, not stirred.” Yet in most
organizations, practices and structures reflexively favour the status quo over change and renewal.
We see entire industries—for example, pharmaceuticals, music, advertising, and publishing—where
the incumbents are struggling to invent their way out of slowly dying business models.

The barriers that once protected large companies from the winds of creative destruction are
crumbling. The result: hyper-competition and relentless pressure on margins. In this environment,
the returns on “incrementalism” are going down while the premium on innovation is rapidly
increasing. In most organizations, innovation is still mostly an afterthought. It’s a project, an
initiative, or a function, but it’s not an activity that involves everyone, every day.

The need to adapt and innovate will require organizations to better use their human capital. For
organizations to succeed in today’s “creative economy,” they need employees who bring more than
their diligence and expertise to work: employees must also bring their imagination and passion.
Again, there’s much work to be done here. Global surveys show that fewer than 20 percent of
employees—and in some countries as few as 2 or 3 percent—are highly engaged in their work. Most
people are just not emotionally or intellectually committed to what they do on the job. Perhaps
companies could afford that when most employees were just expected to follow the rules, but today
this lack of engagement is competitively untenable.

Unless organizations in the developed world want to join the race to the bottom, they must find a
management model that encourages people to bring the very best of themselves to work everyday.
For all these reasons tomorrow’s business leaders must create companies that are more adaptable,
innovative, and inspiring than the bureaucratic, top-down organizations that predominate today.

When you look back at the history of management, you find that it was the management pioneers
that became the 20th century’s industrial giants: GE brought management discipline to science and
helped to create the world’s first R&D labs. P&G developed methods for creating value around
brands—assets that didn’t even appear on the balance sheet. In this new century, I’m confident that
bold management innovators will be the winners.




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In addition, I believe there’s a good chance that the technology of management will change as
radically in the next few decades as it did in the early part of the last century. Three things will drive
this new management revolution. First, as I described earlier, companies today face a set of new and
inescapable challenges that lie outside the performance envelope of management as usual. The
second driving force is the Internet, which has spawned a vast array of new tools for managing
collaboration. In the past, nothing could be done at scale without a lot of bureaucratic structures.
Now thousands of people can collaborate around the world online with little in the way of formal
hierarchy or management structures. Suppose, for a moment, that ten years ago someone had
surveyed the top 100 executives in each of the Fortune 500 companies—that’s 50,000 business
leaders—and asked them if they could imagine a time when a disparate army of volunteers from
across the world, with no formal control processes, no budgets, and no real funding, could create
one of the most complex of all products: a computer operating system. I doubt that one executive
out of a thousand would have said, “Sure, this will happen.” Yet the Linux operating system was
developed in precisely this way. So we should be asking ourselves, what are the potential
management breakthroughs that we can scarcely imagine?

These new Web-based tools will allow hierarchies to form around natural leaders rather than
beneath the individuals who have been given formal, hierarchical appointments. They will
democratise the workplace and give everyone the chance to help create strategy and offer advice on
critical issues. This won’t happen overnight, but organizations will eventually figure out how to use
these new tools, just as those early management pioneers learned how to use the telegraph and
then the telephone to better manage large-scale organizations.

The values and attitudes of the Millennials now entering the work force make up the third challenge
that will compel organizations to retool their legacy management models. If you spent your
adolescence creating, collaborating, and learning on the Web, you’ve developed some sensibilities
that will be very hard to change once you enter the work force. One of these is the belief that all
ideas should compete on a level playing field. The twentysomethings who take this as a point of faith
won’t want to work in organizations where a senior executive’s point of view gets an extra measure
of credibility simply because he or she sits higher up in the hierarchy.

This new generation also believes that all information should be accessible. The ethos is to share
information freely, not to dole it out on a need-to-know basis, as management often did in the past.
What’s more, this new generation believes that people should be measured on the basis of their
contributions, not their credentials. When you post something on YouTube or write a blog, nobody
asks, “Did you go to film school?” “Do you have a journalism degree?” People ask, “Was it funny?”
“Was it incisive?” So any company that hopes to hire the best and the brightest will have to confront
the need to dramatically change how they manage and how they organize, because the value system
found in most organizations today is antithetical to the value systems that drive collaboration on the
Web.

These three factors—inescapable challenges that defy conventional management wisdom, new
social technologies that allow human beings to accomplish great things without the weight of
bureaucracy, and a new generation of employees who come to work preloaded with anti-
bureaucracy values—are going to force a fundamental rethink of how we lead, manage, and
organize.

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Annex D: Freedom of Information Act 1982 amendments & the role of
the Information Commissioner
FOI Act Amendments
1 Section 3

Repeal the section, substitute:

3 Objects—general

        (1)    The objects of this Act are to give the Australian community access to information
held by the Government of the Commonwealth, by:

        (a)      requiring agencies to publish the information; and

        (b)      providing for a right of access to documents.

      (2)     The Parliament intends, by these objects, to promote Australia’s representative
democracy by contributing towards the following:

         (a)   increasing public participation in Government processes, with a view to promoting
better informed decision making;

        (b)      increasing scrutiny, discussion, comment and review of the Government’s activities.

       (3)     The Parliament also intends, by these objects, to increase recognition that
information held by the Government is to be managed for public purposes, and is a national
resource.

       (4)     The Parliament also intends that functions and powers given by this Act are to be
performed and exercised, as far as possible, to facilitate and promote public access to information,
promptly and at the lowest reasonable cost.

The Act applies to all "ministers, departments and public authorities" of the Commonwealth.
Department" means a Department of the Australian Public Service that corresponds to a
Department of State of the Commonwealth a body corporate, or an unincorporated body,
established for a public purpose by, or in accordance with the provisions of, an enactment or an
Order-in-Council.

Role of Information Commissioner (extract from PM&C Guidance document)
In performing functions under the Privacy Act and FOI Act, the Office will work with members of the
public and with agencies on a day to day basis. It is proposed that the new Office would provide a
central point of contact for the public on government information handling matters. It will also
provide new possibilities for more coordinated development of government information policy
across all facets of information management and all stages of the information cycle. To that end, it is
proposed that the Information Commissioner be given a function of advising the Government on


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these matters and that the Commissioner be assisted by an advisory committee comprised of senior
officers across key agencies. The Information Commissioner will be responsible for monitoring
agency compliance with the publication scheme. Agencies will be required to produce plans setting
out how they intend to comply with the scheme. Those plans, which must be published, will give
members of the public an overview of the information available to them. Agencies must also publish
contact details for an officer who can be contacted about access to agency information under the
FOI Act.

Legislative functions of the Commissioner (Information Commissioner Bill
2009)

Functions—what are the information commissioner functions?
The information commissioner functions are as follows:
(a) to report to the Minister on any matter that relates to the Commonwealth Government’s policy
and practice with respect to:
(i) the collection, use, disclosure, management, administration or storage of, or accessibility to,
information held by the Government; and
(ii) the systems used, or proposed to be used, for the activities covered by subparagraph (i);
(b) any other function conferred by another Act (or an instrument under another Act) on the
Information Commissioner other than a freedom of information function or a privacy function.

This Part establishes an information publication scheme for agencies. Each agency must publish a
plan showing how it proposes to implement this Part.
An agency must publish a range of information including information about what the agency does
and the way it does it, as well as information dealt with or used in the course of its operations, some
of which is called operational information. In addition, an agency may publish other information held
by the agency.
Information published by an agency must be kept accurate up-to-date and complete.
An agency is not required to publish exempt matter. An agency is also not required to publish
information if prohibited by another enactment.
The information (or details of how to access the information) must be published on a website.
If there is a charge for accessing the information, the agency must publish details of the charge.
 An agency must, in conjunction with the Information Commissioner, review the operation of the
scheme in the agency every 5 years (if not earlier).
An agency must have regard to the objects of this Act, and guidelines issued by the Information
Commissioner, in doing anything for the purposes of this Part.




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