‘Stand and Deliver, A Design for Successful Government’ is Ed Straw’s attempt, from past experience and unimpeachable credentials, to analyse what is wrong with the democratic process and how current defects can be corrected. Details of his book and some reviews can be found here.
I recommend anyone with the coherence, nay, the survival of the UK at heart to read Ed’s book.
Whilst my credentials aren’t as extensive as Ed’s I have been writing on this problem for 16 years at least. Starting during the time I was the Chair of the Chartered Quality Institute’s Integrated Management Special Interest Group around the turn of the Millennium.
I have not yet fully read Stand and Deliver and this is not a review of Ed’s work or analysis but only to say I largely agree with it, miss an index at the end and mention two issues that are missing as far as I can tell.
The missing index does not allow me to determine whether ‘Resources’ are mentioned and the text I have covered at this point does not seem to stress any critical energy and resource imperative although climate change is mentioned. My researches, without links here, lead me to the conclusion that these, together with how we respond to them, will determine our future. I put our Democratic Process at the top of a list of issues that will disadvantage the West and the UK at least eleven years ago in 2005.
Putting energy and physical resource constraints and the abundance of human resources at the focus of the analysis gives clarity to the issues in, what I label the creation and retention of Essential Value and the reduction in Failure Demand incurred whilst doing it.
Ed’s thoughts are clearly a valuable contribution to doing this.
Ed has also, probably sensibly, omitted diagrams from his book, using only one on Alignment. However, I have always felt there is a need for a clear diagram of the elements needed and their general flow. I obviously like the one I present below, modified from my organisational Virtuous Circle, but I do not claim its perfection. I’m sure though it could be modified to fit Ed’s Treaty for Government within the boxes.