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Transcripts from the Prime Ministers of Australia

Transcript 41613

Review of the Australian Public Service

Photo of Turnbull, Malcolm

Turnbull, Malcolm

Period of Service: 15/09/2015 to 24/08/2018

More information about Turnbull, Malcolm on The National Archive website.

Release Date: 04/05/2018

Release Type: Media Release

Transcript ID: 41613

The Government has commissioned an independent review of the Australian Public Service to ensure it is best placed to serve Australian Governments and the Australian people into the future. 

The review will be led by Mr David Thodey AO, a distinguished business leader, former CEO of Telstra and current chair of CSIRO.

The APS has a long history advising successive Australian Governments and serving the Australian people well.

But a range of global, technological and public policy developments are transforming our economy and our society, presenting both opportunities and challenges.

The public sector has a critical role in this context. Our APS must be apolitical, professional and efficient. It needs to drive policy and implementation, using technology and data to deliver for the Australian community.

Many of the fundamentals of Australia’s public sector in 2018 reflect the outcomes of a Royal Commission held back in the mid 1970s.

It is therefore timely to examine the capability, culture and operating model of the APS, to ensure it is equipped to engage with the key policy, service delivery and regulatory issues of the day.

Crucially, this also means ensuring our public service attracts and retains people with the appropriate skills and capabilities to fulfil its functions.

Mr Thodey AO will be joined on the review panel by Ms Maile Carnegie (Group Executive Digital Banking at ANZ), Professor Glyn Davis AC (Vice-Chancellor of the University of Melbourne), Dr Gordon de Brouwer PSM (former Secretary of the Department of the Environment and Energy), Ms Belinda Hutchinson AM (Chancellor of the University of Sydney) and Ms Alison Watkins (Group Managing Director of Coca-Cola Amatil).

The panel will consult widely, both within and outside the public service, and will be supported by a secretariat in Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet

This review is an excellent opportunity to ensure the APS is fit-for-purpose in the years and decades ahead. We look forward to receiving the panel’s report in 2019.

Terms of reference are available at:

Transcript 41613