Monday, January 29, 2007

Public Administration Committee review of the 3rd Sector - please don't overlook governance

With so many politicians speechifying about the Third Sector, it is reassuring to learn that the House of Common's Public Administration Select Committee has launched an inquiry to scrutinise how the public sector is buying goods and services from the community and voluntary organisations of the Third Sector.

I strongly support an increased role for Third Sector organisations in the NHS and elsewhere - they facilitate benchmarking, spread good practice, promote innovation and often allow for new forms of accountability to communities and users, patients, residents, etc.

However, there are issues. In particular, some voluntary groups have poor governance - poor internal controls, cases of unjustifiable pay and patronage. I have seen this at first hand. Research has shown this too. I hope the Committee review addresses these issues.

The Committee is calling for interested organisations and individuals to submit evidence to the inquiry.


Anonymous said...

This should be open to external compitition so the that do gooders are replaced with professionals.

Bob Deed said...

I don't have a problem with "do-gooders" - very often they are professionals too.

I do think that good governance is vital (and don't forget that there is plenty of bad governance in all sectors - private, public and not-for-profit).

It is important that on boards "do-gooders", professionals and everyone else are properly selected, inducted, trained, developed and appraised.