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The financial crisis – time for a fresh start for Europe’s public services?


15 Apr 2009


Public Affairs

“No one doubts that the global financial crisis presents unique challenges for public services in the EU” says Michael Burnett, public service delivery expert at the European Institute of Public Administration (EIPA), launching a new EIPA initiative. But, he predicts, “Some will find new ways of delivering services and new opportunities in this crisis”.

As part of this initiative EIPA will organise a new seminar on “Delivering public services in a time of financial crisis - Choices, challenges and opportunities” on 6 and 7 July 2009 in Maastricht (NL).

“We aim to bring together those responsible in public administrations for making the hard choices we will all face in the coming months and years, explain what the crisis is and what it means for public services” he says. “From there we will look at the tough questions everyone is asking and start to map the way forward”.

Mr Burnett highlights some of the questions which the initiative will deal with ie How can governments maintain quality of service when faced by budgetary constraints? Does the crisis create opportunities for innovation in service delivery? Will the environmental agenda be quietly sidelined? Or is “green growth” the way out of the crisis for European governments? How should European governments balance support for employment now and support for employability in the future?

“None of these are easy to deal with” Mr Burnett continues “but by coming together and sharing experiences we can help to learn how they fit together and how others are tackling them and start to develop answers which fit Europe’s diverse needs”.
Maastricht (NL), 14 April 2009

Note for the editors:

1. More information: Ms Joyce Groneschild, Marketing & Information Coordinator,

European Institute of Public Administration,

Tel: +31 (0) 43 3296357; email:

For further information on the seminar “Delivering public services in a time of financial crisis - Choices, challenges and opportunities”, please visit the website: WWW.EIPA.EU

2. Michael Burnett (UK) is an EIPA expert on public service delivery. He is the former head of a UK government training agency, has more than 20 years of experience working in and with the public sector in fields such as budgeting, financial management, benchmarking, performance management and training/skills development and has worked in 23 European countries. He is the author of “PPP – A decision-maker’s guide”, published by EIPA in 2007.

Joyce J.W.M. Groneschild
Marketing & Information Coordinator
European Institute of Public Administration
PO Box 1229
NL - 6201 BE Maastricht
Tel: +31 43 3296 357
Fax: +31 43 3296 296


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