Wednesday, December 19, 2007

This spate of crises speaks of a bloated, broken Whitehall

"Brown's famous ´delivery tool´, e-government, is imploding in a welter of costs. A 2005 survey in the Guardian rated Britain bottom of seven western governments in using computers - everything from procurement to ´scrap rates´ and negotiating weakness. Whitehall's response was to double spending on consultants by the Office of Government Commerce. Government computers are like Hal in the film 2001, with inbuilt self-aggrandisement and self-defence.

"With costs on the ID card and NHS computer projects accelerating beyond the power of audit, there is no sign of improvement. In areas such as child support, doctor recruitment, defence coordination, illegal immigration and farm subsidies, not millions but billions of pounds are being wasted. Next year the senseless ContactPoint computer of all child records will go online, costing £40m a year just to operate. It is a racing certainty that this project will collapse from over-complexity and insecurity." —Simon Jenkins

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I'm inclined to accuse you of unnecessary scare-mongering, but the problem is, you're correct.