Effective ministers rely on effective teams. This event brings together people who have worked in the heart of ministerial offices to discuss how to create effective support for ministers. It considers:
- How do spads contribute to development and implementation of policy? How is their policy role balanced with other roles?
- What makes an effective ministerial office? What mix of spads, traditional private office staff and expert advisers is needed?
- What support do ministers and advisers need to function effectively in their jobs?
- How might the ‘Extended Ministerial Office’ model, which gives ministers more say over appointment and management of their team, change the dynamics in Departments? What additional value do they bring to the rest of the department?
- Giles Wilkes was Special Adviser to Vince Cable, Secretary of State for Business Innovation and Skills and has written Special Advisers: The Unelected Lynchpin, an Institute for Government ‘Inside Out’ publication which looks in detail at the role of the policy spad. Giles is now a leader writer at the Financial Times.
- Pamela Dow joined the DfE Private Office in April 2011, serving as Deputy Principal Private Secretary until her appointment as PPS to the Secretary of State for Education in August 2012. Before becoming a civil servant Pamela worked in private sector public affairs consultancy, and in-house government relations.
- Nick Hillman was Special Adviser to David Willetts, the Minister for Universities and Science, until December 2013. Nick wrote In Defence of Special Advisers, an Institute for Government ‘Inside Out’ publication. He is now the Director of the Higher Education Policy Institute.
This event is chaired by Julian McCrae, Deputy Director, Institute for Government.
As the Institute publishes a personal perspective on the role of special advisers or ‘spads’ by former BIS adviser Giles Wilkes, this event brings together people who have worked in the heart of ministerial offices to discuss how to create effective support for ministers