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Podcast

Preparing for Power – Episode 2: The civil service

Five former permanent secretaries reveal how they readied themselves and their departments for a potential change in their political bosses.

Whoever forms the next government will need to be prepared. The job begins almost as soon as the votes have been counted. Preparing for Power, a special six-part series from the Institute for Government, takes you behind the scenes to find out how our politicians, their advisers and officials block out the noise of a general election campaign to get ready for being in government.

Episode 2 explores how the civil service prepares for a potential transition of government, with five former permanent secretaries revealing how they readied themselves and their departments for a potential change in their political bosses.

How does Whitehall prepare for a change in the party in power? What can civil servants do to get ready for a hung parliament? And how do they continue to serve the current government while these preparations are going on? In this episode of Preparing for Power, we speak to former senior civil servants to discover how they prepared for that all important election result and its aftermath, hear their secrets, and work out the lessons for 2024.

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