A future for British public services under Government cuts? Lord Gus O'Donnell to give the Peter Campbell Memorial Lecture
Release Date 27 November 2012
Lord Gus O'Donnell, until recently the UK's most senior civil servant, who advised the governments of John Major, Tony Blair, Gordon Brown and David Cameron, will be giving the Peter Campbell Memorial Lecture at the University of Reading on Wednesday 5 December.
With little money in the public purse, and little scope for fresh investment, the former Cabinet Secretary will discuss one of the current key challenges for UK society, the future of public services at a time of economic cuts. In his public lecture Changing behaviour: transforming public policy without investing more, Lord O'Donnell will ask how the UK can improve its services with squeezed budgets.
Lord O'Donnell is the most impressive civil servant of his generation. Since standing down as the Head of the Civil Service at the end of 2011, he has been working intensively on policy-related questions in the area of well-being and behavioural change. His lecture will draw on his unique experience as well as more recent reflections about the very nature of well-being.
Professor Alan Cromartie of the Department of Politics and International Relations said: "We are delighted that Lord O'Donnell will be delivering the Peter Campbell Memorial Lecture this year. As Cabinet Secretary and Head of the Civil Service, Lord O'Donnell was an outstanding public servant with a uniquely privileged view of British politics. His lecture addresses fundamental questions on the basic character of public policy and the ways in which we might be governed better."
The Peter Campbell Memorial Lecture is hosted by the Department of Politics and International Relations. The lecture is named after Professor Peter Campbell, the founding head of the Department, who died in 2005. Peter Campbell was a brilliant academic with powerful but unclassifiable political sympathies and a commitment to all forms of political education. The lectures that are given in his honour set out to raise awareness of political processes from a non-academic and non-party political perspective.
Lord Gus O'Donnell CB, KCB and GCB was Cabinet Secretary and Head of Civil Service from 2005 to 2011. He was appointed to the House of Lords in January 2012, upon leaving the civil service. He played a leading role in the preparations for the 2010 election which eventually resulted in the formation of the UK's first coalition government since World War II.
Prior to his role as Cabinet Secretary, he served as Permanent Secretary of the UK Treasury from 2002 -2005 and as press secretary to Prime Minister John Major from 1990-1994. He spent most of his career with the UK Treasury. In 1999 he was appointed Managing Director of Macroeconomic Policy and International Finance and was responsible for fiscal policy, international development, and European Union Economic and Monetary Union. During this period he oversaw the production of the '5 tests' analysis for whether the UK should join the euro.
The Peter Campbell Memorial Lecture takes place on the evening of Wednesday 5 December at 6.45pm in the Henley Business School on the University of Reading's Whiteknights Campus.
Tickets to this public event are free but must be pre-booked on firstname.lastname@example.org or 0118 378 4313.