2013 Tansley Lecture - Strategic Targets for Public Services: Lessons for Canada from the English Experience

Presented by Peter C. Smith, Professor of Health Policy, Imperial College London

April 18, 2013

Peter C SmithWhen it came to power in 1997, Tony Blair’s government sought to revolutionize the way in which UK public services were planned and delivered. In particular, it sought to focus the actions of ministers on explicit objectives and targets, in the form of ‘Public Service Agreements’ (PSAs). The distinctive feature of this system was a range of high profi le mechanisms designed to ensure that PSAs led to measurable changes in public service performance. This presentation summarizes the history of the PSA regime, describes some of the major issues that arose in its implementation, and assesses its general relevance to the management of public services by governments in Canada contemplating, implementing or using performance management regimes.

Peter C. Smith is Professor of Health Policy at Imperial College London, where he co-directs the Centre for Health Policy. He is a mathematics graduate from the University of Oxford, and was formerly Director of the Centre for Health Economics at the University of York. He is author of many academic papers on the financing and efficiency of public services, and is with Sherry Glied joint editor of the Oxford Handbook of Health Economics. Particular research interests include health system performance assessment, value for money, and the equitable financing of public services. Smith has advised many government ministries and international agencies, including the World Health Organization, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, the European Commission and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.

Post-event publication
Photo gallery

Poster Presentation

2013 Poster competition winners

L-R:Richard Schlachter, Business Development Senior Manager, Deloitte; Colleen Quinlan, MPA student; Ryan Mang, MPA student; Kimberley Brown, Senior Policy Analyst, Western Economic Diversification Canada; Cam Swan, Chair, Public Service Commission, Saskatchewan Central Services (Photo credit: University of Regina Photography Department)

The Johnson-Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy was also pleased to feature the third annual JSGS Policy Research Poster Presentation. During cocktail hour, students were asked to present posters summarizing their research activities, with opportunity for extended discussion and engagement with those attending the lecture. The poster presentations were evaluated by a panel of representatives including:

  • Mr. Cam Swan, Chair, Public Service Commission, Saskatchewan Central Services
  • Mr. Richard Schlachter, Business Development Senior Manager, Deloitte
  • Ms. Kimberley Brown, Senior Policy Analyst, Western Economic Diversification Canada

We extend congratulations to the first-place winners of the 2013 IPAC Thought Leadership Award: Ryan Mang, Colleen Quinlan, Olga Gerry and Robyn Passmore, for their poster entitled, Improving Childhood Immunization Coverage Rates. In recognition of this achievement, one of the group members will travel to Montreal in August to present their poster and research at the Institute of Public Administration of Canada’s 65th annual conference. This same group was also the recipient of the Peer Choice Award.

Click here to view other posters presented by students.

Photo Gallery

(Photo credit: University of Regina Photography Dept.)