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CaSE refused information on BIS ‘efficiency and effectiveness review’

23 Aug 2015

CaSE submitted an FOI to BIS regarding an efficiency and effectiveness review to find out more about the scope and findings. Read the BIS response.

The Department for Business Innovation and Skills has refused to provide information to CaSE on the scope or findings of an “efficiency and effectiveness review” by business consultants, McKinsey and Company.

Following reports in the Guardian and Research Fortnight of the review, which will look at all BIS-funded bodies, including the research councils, HEFCE, and Innovate UK, CaSE submitted a Freedom of Information (FOI) request to BIS, requesting:

  1. The instructions that McKinsey received in relation to this work
  2. The scope of the work that McKinsey has been asked to conduct, if it is not explained in the instructions asked for above
  3. Any limitations that BIS has placed on McKinsey with regard to the recommendations that they can make
  4. The powerpoint slides that McKinsey has already presented to BIS in response to this commission
  5. Any other documentation that McKinsey has already presented to BIS in response to this commission.

The department responded saying that they do hold the information requested (the first public admission of the review we are aware of) but that it will be withheld on the grounds that it would “reduce the Government’s ability to protect the policy-making process and maintain the delivery of effective Government” and also to protect “commercial interests”.

CaSE’s Acting Director, Naomi Weir, has written a comment piece for the Guardian on the questions the response raises for transparency in Government.

Download the full FOI submission and BIS’ response

CaSE submitted a FOI request to BIS to try and find out more about a review being undertaken by consultants on behalf of BIS, the results of which could have an impact on the sector.