A summary of articles from the Public Spend Matters Europe site

We launched our new site, Public Spend Matters Europe, a couple of weeks ago and it has had a good reception from the public procurement community around Europe. So every Friday, we will be featuring here a brief summary of the main articles published on PSME that week. If you see something of interest, please click through and take a look at the whole thing on the new site - we have nice pictures there too!

HP battle over Autonomy heats up 

HP, one of the largest suppliers to the European public sector, paid over $11 billion for British software firm Autonomy in 2011 but then wrote off $8.8 billion, claiming dodgy accounting from the old Autonomy management. Court battles lie ahead, but the founder of Autonomy, Mike Lynch, has criticised HP following publication of papers that he claims show the problems are down to HP’s incompetence, not his figures. Indeed, HP’s then CFO voted against the acquisition at the time because of her fears over HP’s “history of not executing on its major acquisitions” But what might this mean for public sector customers of HP - should they be worried?

International Public Procurement Conference - papers published  

August saw the 6th International Public Procurement Conference hosted at Dublin City University. More than 250 public procurement practitioners and academics gathered to listen to and engage in some of the most widely debated procurement topics in the world. About 100 in-depth highly analytical papers were presented by people from as far afield as Portland Oregon, Nepal, Costa Rica and Indonesia. These papers are now available to download and will be valuable reading for CPOs, professors of research, government officials, senior execs from regulatory bodies, graduates, in fact anyone with a procurement interest. We aim to publish a review of some of these papers over the coming weeks – so keep watching!

Ireland’s Health Service Executive should improve transparency in public procurement

Health Service Executive (HSE) has a massive influence on public procurement processes in Ireland and makes up more than 40 percent of the public market. Just last year more than 7,000 public sector contracts were published in Ireland, worth a combined total of €9 billion. HSE accounted for around €4 billion of this.Last month the Irish Government took a step towards a more transparent healthcare procurement process by announcing that the winners of public sector contracts should be published. Could more be done by the HSE?

Encouraging small firms in public competition — the pre-procurement phase  

Most governments want to see small firms (SMEs) winning more public sector contracts. But this has proved tough to achieve, and SME participation is still limited in most areas. So how can contracting authorities and public procurement practitioners help? That should start with actions taken before the formal competition starts, so in this article, we look at how the pre-procurement phase can be designed to be inclusive for SMEs, and also consider the advertising of contract opportunities.

The election in Sweden – business involvement in public service delivery is a key issue 

Sweden has a general election this week, and the involvement of the private sector in delivery of public services has become a key political issue. After some issues in health and deduction, such as the “nappy-weighing” scandal and a private school provider going bust, the electors are questioning whether it is appropriate for private, profit-driven firms to be running sensitive services - a question that is relevant in many other countries as well. We ask whether there is anything wrong with this - or whether certain services should remain in the state’s hands in terms of delivery?

 

Voices (2)

  1. Mark Lainchbury:

    @Mick The EU is thinking along similar lines.

    https://ec.europa.eu/digital-agenda/en/digital-single-market

  2. KaleMick:

    Very interesting to see how it’s done in various areas across the world. Public procurement is such a convoluted issue all over the world. We need more organizations like the Public Procurement Authority (http://ppa-or.gov/) which is geared to improve efficiency in the procurement process, and reduce solicitation and procurement costs. The PPA is a U.S. based agency that provides a mechanism for increased standardization of industry tools, equipment, and technology for fire department purchases, which allows other public agencies to benefit from the publicly awarded contracts. It’s an effective approach to public procurement and should be adopted across all sectors worldwide.

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