On welcoming the decision by the Government today to set up an Irish Government Economic and Evaluation Service (IGEES) Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform, Brendan Howlin, T.D. stated “A key element ofIreland’s economic recovery and future development is the quality of future policy development. The purpose of the new Service is to support better policy-making across the system, through enhanced economic and policy analysis expertise. The work of the Unit will support Departments in evaluating policy and expenditure options; value for money exercises; cost benefit and regulatory impact analyses; and regulatory and competition issues.”
Various reports have identified the need for Departments to bolster their specialist skills in areas such as ICT, Human Resources, project management, accountancy and economics. This initiative will help to address the gaps in economic expertise and policy analysis capability across the civil service. A macroeconomic stream will be established to address the needs of the Department of Finance and other Departments for macroeconomic expertise.
Notes to Editor
It is envisaged that the Service will initially recruit 20-30 staff, both internally and on the open market.
Postgraduate staff with economic qualifications will be targeted through an Administrative Officer competition already underway through the Public Appointments Commission. It is expected that staff will be brought in from May onwards this year and will spend a training period in the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform before being seconded to other Departments with identified needs.
In addition, it is recognised that there is a number of current civil service staff who have the required economic and policy analysis qualifications, but who are not currently placed in roles which make optimum use of their expertise. Applications will be sought from within the Civil Service to allow such staff to be seconded to the Service for a period.