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Australia shifts the digital government goalposts – and the UK and US should pay heed

9 January 2017
Stuart Lauchlan

There are uncomfortable comparisons to be made between what’s happened in Australia and what many fear has been happening in the UK. With the departure of Maude and the likes of former Chief Operating Officer Stephen Kelly, Sir Humphrey and ‘not the way we do things around here’ mentality has regained ground in Whitehall.

There’s also a mindshift throughout the entire public sector that seem retrogressive. Take, for example, Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, which currently proposes to spend £1.3 million on building its own data centre, the sort of thing we were going to stop doing.

Meanwhile a growing number of outsourcing deals that were absolutely never going to be extended under any circumstances are now being, well, extended. Good news for the oligopoly, maybe not so much for the taxpayer?

It increasingly looks like 2017 is a year in which the shape of digital transformation in government across continents might be rewritten – and not in the right direction.