Better Public Services Project

Better Public Services Project

About the Project

We need a revolution in our public services. People should have the right to choose from an open field of the best charity, business and social enterprise providers. Fair competition should be used to get people the best possible results. And the new technologies modernising every other service sector should be used to transform our public services too.

For the first time, the UK Government has recently committed to opening the whole public sector to competing providers, which could usher in this revolution. But with policy detail still forming, concerns remain about how improvements can be achieved practically and fairly.

The Better Public Services Project is conducting new evidence and research to form concrete recommendations for how government can meet its reform ambitions. It was set up by public policy expert and former Special Adviser to the Prime Minister, Sean Worth.

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Areas of Focus

Involving the key public service sectors in central and local government, the project will cover:

  • Public opinion research: new insights into what people want from public services, and attitudes to key issues of public sector reform
  • Information and transparency: how we can use new information strategies to better understand service value and quality, and to empower public accountability
  • Better regulation: promoting the rights of service users, ensuring providers from all sectors can enter public markets on fair terms and safeguarding against unwanted outcomes from competition, like monopolies and profiteering
  • Ways to scale up independent provision: how the role of social enterprise and charities, as well as that of businesses, can be expanded to create the mixed economy of provision ministers want to see
  • Innovation in public service design, procurement and delivery: how essential best practices in procurement, commissioning and technology use can be adopted in a policy environment of increasing provider autonomy and local control

The project will produce new research, policy workshops and events, culminating in a seminal publication that will consolidate a concrete policy programme.