From leading public servants through turbulent times to getting the most out of government data: insight from Global Government Forum’s top webinars of 2022

By on 29/12/2022 | Updated on 29/12/2022
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Global Government Forum’s programme of webinars for public and civil servants brings together officials involved in developing policy and delivering public services to share best practice on how to deliver innovative government in the 21st century.

Here, we share insights from some of the most popular GGF webinars from 2022, on topics ranging from how leaders can support staff through turbulent times to investigating the agility of the civil service in nine countries.

How to lead staff through turbulent times

As the world emerged from the COVID-19 pandemic – but with crises becoming more common – panellists on one webinar, including European Commission director general for human resources Gertrud Ingestad, discussed how the pandemic has altered the role of civil service leaders, and why keeping staff engaged will be key.

Ingestad said managers will need the support of their organisations to find the answers in this new world of work. Adam King, public sector lead, workforce transformation at Deloitte, said a question on managers’ minds is how they can be expected to keep track of multiple working patterns across a permanently distributed workforce. The short answer, he said, is that none of them really can – ownership of the work process should always stay with a manager’s team.

Global Government Forum webinars also covered the impact of hybrid working on creating inclusive civil and public and services

The Adapting for individuals: creating inclusive workforces in the era of hybrid working webinar looked at the impact of the shift to remote and hybrid work on efforts to create more inclusive public services. Panellists discussed the benefits of remote working for both employers and employees, including a better work-life balance; the challenges of ensuring that all home and office workspaces are appropriate for people’s needs; and ensuring that less social contact doesn’t adversely affect individuals’ mental health or career prospects.

Key questions around workforce development were also discussed during webinars on how to upskill the public sector workforce to make sure governments have the talent they need, and on how to support disabled people into senior roles.

Post-pandemic priorities for government

A number of webinars looked at how the recovery from the coronavirus pandemic had affected specific areas of policy.

The Shaping public investments for the net zero world webinar touched on the need to consider social as well as environmental and economic impacts, private sector investment in public infrastructure projects, and the accompanying goal of digital transformation.

Getting the most out of government data looked at how – as public services amass ever larger sums of data to keep pace with the growth of digital public services – governments can make the best use of the information they have, and gather the information they need.

The Policy for 1.5 webinar looked at what governments can do to tackle climate change both domestically and internationally. Public and private sector experts from the UK, the US, and Panama discussed how governments can develop polices to both decarbonise the activities of the state, and incentivise and catalyse decarbonisation across the wider economy, and why strategic collaboration and cooperation is so important to making change.

The Open for business: how government can help reboot tourism post-COVID webinar focused on how governments around the world were reopening their tourism sectors after the pandemic, and how to support wider changes in the industry, including digitalisation, working with the increasingly environmentally aware traveller, and the challenge of staff shortages.

The Responsive government: investigating the agility of the civil service in nine countries webinar set out the findings from Global Government Forum’s Responsive Government Survey, which explored how civil and public servants rate the ability of their government organisations to meet challenges such as the coronavirus pandemic.

COVID-19 forced public and civil services around the world to respond to the public health and economic emergency at a pace rarely seen previously, and panellists discussed how departments can build on the positive changes that were prompted by the pandemic.

Read more: Responsive Government Survey

Take a look at Global Government Forum’s upcoming webinars for 2023.

About Richard Johnstone

Richard Johnstone is the executive editor of Global Government Forum, where he helps to produce editorial analysis and insight for the title’s audience of public servants around the world. Before joining GGF, he spent nearly five years at UK-based title Civil Service World, latterly as acting editor, and has worked in public policy journalism throughout his career.

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