Posts tagged with ‘ special advisers ’

Guest blog: In defence of special advisers

, 27 March 2014

That doesn’t mean spads are a popular part of government. Andrew Blick’s excellent history of the position, People Who Live in the Dark, is peppered with the insults levelled at spads over the years, including ‘the sand in the machine’, ‘a huge menace to democracy’ and even ‘the rent boys of politics’. Perhaps such...

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Special advisers – out of the shadows and into the light

, 16 October 2012

First of all, special advisers play a vital role in government including helping to protect the impartiality of the civil service. As we highlighted in The Challenges of Being a Minister, ministers can be isolated and lonely. Special advisers can help as loyal, informed and politically sympathetic colleagues. An environment of openness, confidence and...

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Special Treatment? Why the coalition is appointing more special advisers

, 18 October 2011

Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg is in the process of appointing around half a dozen additional special advisers (SpAds). This will apparently take the overall number of SpAds across Whitehall to around 80, above the level at the end of the Labour administration (and not counting other political appointees within the civil service, let...

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Why special advisers are more than cabinet apprentices

, 27 May 2011

In the foreword of The Challenge of Being a Minister, the Institute for Government’s Director Andrew Adonis perhaps goes against the grain of the perceived commentariat wisdom. He argues that his own stint as a special adviser – which he compares to an apprenticeship – meant he was much better prepared to face the...

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