PC&PE:  We no longer wield such a big stick - The Government will need to make some difficult decisions on prioritisation if it embarks on a future mission similar to the Libya operation now that the Strategic Defence & Security (SDSR) is taking effect, says the Defence Committee in its report into Operations in Libya, published last week.

Although the UK was able to satisfy both operations in Libya & Afghanistan and its other standing tasks & commitments, the Libya operation was conducted before the implementation of many of the SDSR decisions on capability reductions.

The report notes the 2010 SD&S Review aim ‘that the UK would be more selective in its deployment of UK Armed Forces and would do so where there was a clear strategic aim...and a viable exit strategy’.  There is, however, a ‘disconnect’ between this assertion and the admission of the government that ‘there is a limit to the number of engagements that can be undertaken where the exit strategy is known with complete clarity’.

The Committee is also concerned that ‘future NATO operations will not be possible if the US is not willing or able to provide capabilities such as unmanned aerial vehicles, intelligence & refuelling aircraft’. 

It should be a priority for NATO to examine this over-reliance on US capabilities & assets. This challenge will be heightened by the US stated intention to shift its military, geographic & strategic focus to the Asia-Pacific region.
Press release ~ Report: Operations in Libya ~ Inquiry: Operations in Libya ~ MOD launches Building Stability Overseas Strategy ~ Combating cyber attacks ~ MoD:  Re-sizing our military forces is only acceptable if it is balanced by a reduction in political requirements for ‘world policing’ (first item) ~ A 2011 Global Ranking of Soft Power ~ Use of ‘soft power’ in interests of UK ~ Chatham House: Soft Power ~ CH: Exit Strategy ~ CH: SDSR ~ RUSI: SDSR ~ RUSI: Soft power ~ RUSI: Exit Strategy

COIt’s not what you say, but how you say it - The Behavioural Insights Team has published a paper on fraud, debt & error.  It represents a completely new way of doing policy and by actively testing ideas with public bodies the team has been able to demonstrate effects that, if rolled out, could save hundreds of millions of pounds.

The paper also presents the preliminary findings from 8 randomised controlled trials which BIT has run with a range of organisations – from local authorities to HMRC.  

For example, the project demonstrated that by making simple changes to tax letters, explaining that most people in the local area had already paid their taxes, repayment rates were boosted by around 15 percentage points. 
Press release & links ~ Behavioural Insights Team Paper on Fraud, Error and Debt ~ Behavioural Insight Team annual update ~ Behaviour Change and Energy use ~ Applying Behavioural Insights ~ Consumer empowerment strategy published ~ DfT: Behavioural insights toolkit ~ Applying behavioural insights for sustainable policy ~ BBC iPlayer: All in the Mind ~ MINDSPACE: Influencing behaviour through public policy

FSAYou cannot believe everything you read - An online tool aimed at dispelling myths about food allergy & intolerance has been launched on the NHS Choices website, with the help of the Food Standards Agency.  The tool looks at common misconceptions about food allergies & intolerances and ‘sorts the facts from fiction’.
Press release & links ~ HSE: Myths ~ Untrue myths about sports nutrition foods ~ 'Medical myths' exposed as untrue

DfEIt's difficult to protect your children when they know more than you - The UK Council for Child Internet Safety (UKCCIS) last week launched new guidelines for organisations and Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to make sure parents & children get quality & consistent messages about internet safety.

The advice was published on Safer Internet Day 2012, a global drive to promote a safer internet for children and young people, and comes as TalkTalk announce they are the first ISP to offer customers an ‘active choice’ over whether or not they wish to use parental controls. 

This will make it easier for parents to protect their children from harmful or inappropriate online content from whichever device is used in the home – PC, laptop, games console or Internet enabled TV.
Press release & links ~ Advice on child internet safety 1.0 universal guide ~ Related OCUK PR & links ~ Dr Tanya Byron's review of the internet and video games and their impact on young people ~ ThinkUknow videos (scroll down) ~ Teachers’ resources ~ ScotGov: Child internet safety information ~ EU: Safer Internet Programme: Empowering and Protecting Children Online ~ UK Council for Child Internet Safety's (UKCCIS)

DfTOnline DIY holiday bookings get a boost - Up to 6m extra holidays each year will be fully protected against the failure of a travel company after Aviation Minister, Theresa Villiers confirmed measures to strengthen & modernise the ATOL holiday protection scheme, which will come into effect on 30 April 2012.  A summary of consultation responses and further details on the new regulations are available on the Department for Transport website.
Press release & links

DCMSAll are worthy but only one will win - From Edinburgh to Exeter and from cryptography to contemporary sculpture, 10 museums are in the running for the UK’s biggest prize for arts & cultural institutions. The ‘longlist’ for the £100,000 Art Fund Prize, now in its tenth year, was announced recently.  

Members of the public can now give their views on which museum should scoop the prize on an online forum launched last week.  A shortlist of 4 museums will be announced in May 2012 and the cash prize will be awarded on 19 June 2012.
Press release & links

ACE:  A chance to boost ‘sensible’ projects! - Nominations are now open for the National Lottery Awards 2012 - the annual search to find the UK's favourite Lottery-funded projects, including projects funded by the Arts Council's Grants for the arts scheme.  Visit the National Lottery Awards website before Monday 12 March 2012 to nominate your favourite project, or to enter your own project.
Press release ~ National Lottery Awards website ~ Arts Council's Grants for the arts scheme

DCMS60 years of 'Have you come far' - 2 new photographs of the Queen and a Diamond Jubilee website have been launched recently by the Royal Household.   Visitors can search an events map to find Royal engagements taking place near them in Jubilee year and send a congratulatory message to The Queen.
Press release & links ~ Related press release ~ Queen’s Jubilee message

Forthcoming event: Gartner Business Process Management Summit 2012, 14 15 March, London - People, Politics, Process: Breaking Down the Barriers to Enterprise Success - For those new to BPM, the Summit will help you to take the first steps, establish the skills required, and identify the right technologies. For those who are more experienced, the Summit will provide visibility into the future, identify the next generation of BPM and help you leverage new approaches such as Social BPM, Pace Layering and Intelligent Business Operations.
Key topics:
  • Dealing with Politics and Silos
  • Organizational Change Management
  • BPM and Mobile
  • Cloud Impact on BPM
    Intelligent Business Operations

This Summit will help you to advance your BPM projects, improve your own skills and deliver truly transformational BPM to your organization.

Click here to view the full agenda and register.

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