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Blog from Paul O'Brien

July 15, 2011
Managing demand for local government services

Reading Thaler and Sunstein’s book ‘Nudge’ set me thinking once again about how some of their ideas could be used to manage demand for local government services when management of scarce financial resources has never been more difficult.

By Paul O'Brien
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June 11, 2011
Transforming local authority estate and solving the funding crisis

Local Government owns £250B of property with an estimated one fifth of revenue expenditure going into managing that property. This was a fact that made me sit up in my seat when I attended an event on Local Authority Estate Transformation in Manchester the other day.

By Paul O'Brien
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Tags: APSE, estate management, carbon reduction, property utilisation
June 6, 2011
Plugged into the renewables grid

When APSE launched its research publication ‘The virtuous green circle: creating a revolving fund for local authority solar energy’, in Birmingham recently, I was impressed by the number of authorities present who were making progress with delivering projects in this area of renewable energy.

By Paul O'Brien
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Tags: APSE, solar pv, renewables, biomass, electric fleet, local government
June 2, 2011
Managing parks and open spaces in the age of austerity

Took part in Guardian online debate today on managing parks and green spaces despite the budget cuts and with over 100 posts in two hours it was a lively debate.

I pushed the APSE line about whilst we disagree with the cuts we recognise that they are happening and therefore we need to find ways to stop services from imploding. The only response is to seek efficiency, generate additional income and innovate.

By Paul O'Brien
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Tags: APSE, parks, open Space, Efficiency, income generation, innovation
May 17, 2011
Let it shine

Launch of APSE's new research publication 'the virtuous green circle: creating a revolving fund for local authority solar energy', at Birmingham City Football Club. The report demonstrates a business case as to how you can undertake renewables projects in local government on a self financing basis.

By Paul O'Brien
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Tags: APSE, Renewables, Solar PV, Solar PV
May 16, 2011
In or out

Spoke this morning at a conference at the QE11 centre in London on Outsourcing and Shared Services - except I spoke about the failings of outsourcing over the past twenty years in England and why so many authorities are now insourcing services. I have got to say I was pleasantly surprised that the audience were very receptive to my message and the nine key lessons if still outsourcing services which I mentioned.

By Paul O'Brien
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Tags: APSE, Outsourcing, Insourcing, Suffolk, Third Sector
May 13, 2011
Tough times in greenspace environment

Participated in meeting of Greenlink today in London. This is the body bringing together organisations involved in the parks and open spaces sector, an area that is being particularly hit hard by cuts at present. Many of the organisations present where third sector and social enterprises, who depend heavily on local authority funding and contracts to survive. This is a point the group has pursued at a recent lobbying meeting with DCLG Minister Andrew Stunnell, along with concerns on skill erosion and a reduction in perceived Government supportiveness for the importance of quality green space.

By Paul O'Brien
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Tags: greenspace, parks, open space, APSE, Greenline, Localism Bill, Cuts, renewable energy
April 8, 2011
Innovation and Income Generation

Chaired APSE's Innovation forum at Elland Road Stadium, Leeds today on income generation opportunities for local authorities.

By Paul O'Brien
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Tags: APSE, income generation
April 7, 2011
The Welsh Way

Engaged in a roundtable discussion with some of APSE's main contacts in Wales today at a lunchtime meeting in LLandrindnod Wells.

By Paul O'Brien
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Tags: APSE
April 6, 2011
Institute for Management of Sport and Physical Activity

Met today with the Chief Executive of the Institute of Management of Sport and Physical Activity, Sean Holt and a couple of his board members at their headquarters based at Loughborough University.

By Paul O'Brien
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Tags: APSE, MSPA, ISRM, ISPAL

Promoting excellence in public services

APSE (Association for Public Service Excellence) is a not for profit local government body working with over 300 councils throughout the UK. Promoting excellence in public services, APSE is the foremost specialist in local authority frontline services, hosting a network for frontline service providers in areas such as waste and refuse collection, parks and environmental services, cemeteries and crematorium, environmental health, leisure, school meals, cleaning, housing and building maintenance.

           

 

          

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