The machine that runs Britain’s state needs an overhaul
- Ministerial hostility and increased churn compound long-standing concerns about the civil service
In 2011 the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) decided to roll out a new GPS-enabled ankle tag for criminals, in the hope of reducing reoffending. The design included 900 bespoke requirements and was split between four contractors—a high-risk structure in which the MoJ had no experience. Officials and suppliers fell out; managers came and went; hazy assumptions went unchallenged. In 2022 the programme was canned at a cost of £98m.