The Federal Government on Tuesday pledged to equip civil servants with technical skills and capabilities to successfully support data-driven decision making in the system.
Dr Folasade Yemi-Esan, Acting Head of Civil Service of the Federation (HOCSF), disclosed this when she declared open, a five-day workshop organised by the office of the HOCSF in collaboration with Oxford University.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), reports that the workshop is on the Technical Paper emanating from the assessment of the Applicability of the International Civil Service Effectiveness (InCiSE), Index Methodology to Nigeria.
Yemi-Esan said that the InCiSE project was the basis for bench-marking/measuring/assessing the performance of public services globally.
She said that the project had been supported by the UK Civil Service and was funded by the Open Society Foundations.
“The role played by an effective civil service in determining a country’s progress and prosperity cannot be over-emphasised.
“ An effective civil service guarantees socio-economic stability and prosperity, while an ineffective civil service results in countries drowning in the quagmire of instability and abject poverty,” she said.
According to Yemi-Esan, one key challenge to assessing the effectiveness of civil service in a given country is that the functions of the civil service are not always directly comparable to other organisations.
The Ag HOCSF, therefore, emphasised on the need for global comparisons of government and civil service activity which provides standards that helped in determining the effectiveness of civil service in various countries.
“ It is on this note that InCiSE Index was developed to define “effectiveness” more extensively, drawing on a wide range of existing international data sources to bring together a set of indicators.”
Earlier, Mr Temitope Fashedemi, Permanent Secretary, Special Duties Office, office of the HOCSF, in his welcome address, explained that the workshop was designed to provide a veritable platform for relevant stakeholders in the civil service.
Fashedemi stated further that the platform would provide an opportunity for them to discuss and come up with new index for Nigeria and areas in which the country was currently lacking in relevant data collection.
According to him, Blavatnik School of Government, University of Oxford, collaborating with the office of the HOCSF, is a global school committed to improving the quality of government and public policy making.
“It is the school that engages in conducting research with impact and engaging with government and practitioners,” he said.
Also, Mr Malum Miller, Chief Operating Officer, Blavatnik School of Government, University of Oxford, explained that the essence and the establishment of InCiSE was to help countries to determine how their central civil services were performed.
Miller said that the initiative also served as a medium for countries to learn from each other, the level of the operations in the civil service system.
“ InCiSE generates data and knowledge which highlights relative strengths and areas to improve in civil service system among others,” he said.