Joined-up thinking, not

Simon Caulkin hits the spot again:
“Whatever happended to joined-up government? One of New Labour’s favourite mantras when it came to power, it dropped out of the lexicon in the second term. This is perhaps understandable, since there is precious little of it about. But that, too, is not surprising, because the management methods the government favours make joined-up anything almost impossible to achieve.”
In his article he looks at Education, the NHS and Pensions and shows how a focus on micro-mamanagement and targets inevitably leads to unintended consequences. For example:
“… according to a Nuffield Review, students going to university increasingly struggle with work that requires them to think independently or make connections between narrow areas of study – when called upon to show joined-up thinking, in other words. Because of excessive emphasis on modular courses, results and league tables, students are taught to pass exams, not to think for themselves.
‘Learners who may have achieved academic success by such means at A-level… are increasingly coming into higher education expecting to be told the answers,’ the review says. Passing exams has become the unspoken purpose of the system. Ministers boast that results are improving but ignore the purpose of the system as a whole: preparing students for adult life as thinking, connecting beings.”

Read the rest of the article and weep.