I’ve always thought that institutions that are set up at arms length from government to offer independent advice to governments would be an excellent venue for online discussions to start taking place. An easy opportunity, pretty comprehensively passed up was the Public Service Commissions’s various deliberations on what the codes of public service conduct should be. I would have thought it would have been an ideal matter on with those in the APS might have discussed the issues openly on a blog. After all it’s APS’ professional business, not ostensibly political or policy business.
Some time ago the PC tried a bit of online engagement, but it had all the usual ‘run by the IT department’ problems and didn’t go anywhere. I discovered with some excitement the unit in the Victorian Bureaucracy which was built in the mould of the PC and which I think is doing a pretty good job was getting into the same game.
Alas VCEConnect is the usual disaster.
VCEC’s original discussion starter on state reform – consists of a single unsigned question asking whether people agree on the three priorities in the draft report. There’s one comment.
Then there’s a thread on another inquiry into education reform. It asks “In your view, what are the key areas the Victorian Government should focus on? And, more specifically, what actions should the Government take in these areas?” There are two comments.
That’s it. Both posts were put up in November.
If I were asked what I think of VCEConnect I would borrow from Mahatma Ghandi when he was asked what he thought of Western civilisation.
I think it would be a good idea.