House of Commons Public Administration Select Committee to assess ability of Civil Service to fix itself

A group of MPs has launched an inquiry into the ability of the Civil Service to reform its role effectively and to look at the skills required by ministers.


The House of Commons Public Administration Select Committee will be investigating whether the right mechanisms of recruitment, training and career development are in place


The effectiveness of the Cabinet Office fulfilling its core function of ‘strengthening the Civil Service’ will also be considered.


In particular, the inquiry will consider:




  • whether the first round of capability reviews carried out by the Cabinet Office have been successful in identifying successes and failures within departments, and recommending action for change


  • if the right incentive structures and targeted performance management programmes exist to encourage a culture of excellence within the Civil Service


  • whether the Civil Service recruitment strategy relates to the skills needed within the service


  • if leadership within the Civil Service is of particular importance and whether the current perceptions of a lack of leadership of particular concern


  • if the skills needed by ministers are being effectively cultivated.

The committee is inviting written evidence from interested parties and will also hold evidence sessions to hear oral evidence from some of those who submit written evidence and from relevant officials.


The Issues and Questions paper is open to consultation until 22 September, can be found on the committee website.

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