Command and control

Selection of critical newspaper headlines

Once considered the black sheep of the Defra family, the Rural Payments Agency (RPA) has advanced from disparate, struggling silos to a unified example of best practice in Government. Chief executive Mark Grimshaw outlines the approach behind this four-year transformation.

Designing a better A&E

Picture of the sign showing the journey through A&E

Government interest is growing in the potential for design to improve policy. Miles Ayling, Director of Innovation at NHS England and Catherine Makin, Project Manager for Health at the Design Council, explain how a partnership between NHS England and the Design Council has reduced aggression, improved staff morale and led to better patient experience across A&E departments.

Predictive analytics: the science of non-compliance


Data science is an emerging discipline which combines analysis, programming and business knowledge and uses new and advanced techniques and technologies to work with complex data. Jonathan Athow, John Lord and Claire Potter, from Knowledge Analysis and Intelligence at HMRC, explain how HMRC are making better use of data to tackle non-compliance.

Learning the language of intelligence

Photograph of school pupils holding a trophy.

The decline in young people studying languages at university could have serious implications for GCHQ, and its ability to protect the UK from international threats. The organisation’s language analysts are striving to combat this by inspiring school pupils to learn some of the most needed languages.

Editorial, January 2015

head shot of chris wormald

Welcome to the seventh edition of Civil Service Quarterly. At the start of a new year, we’re looking ahead. In this edition we examine some of the tools and techniques that can help us excel as civil servants. Within the …

A healthy dose of diplomacy

Sarasa Poduval (in red at back) with colleagues at an elderly care conference in China

When Sarasa Poduval was seconded to China, she became the first Department of Health civil servant ever to be seconded outside Europe. She is now Second Secretary, Health and Social Care in the British Embassy Beijing. She writes about what her adventure has taught her about China, the NHS and the importance of keeping your links back home.