CEO of the charity think tank and consultancy New Philanthropy Capital, and Former Treasury and 10 Downing Street adviser
Dan joined NPC as Chief Executive in October 2011, following a varied career in public policy and economics. Dan was Head of the Number 10 Policy Unit and Senior Adviser to the Prime Minister on the Economy from 2007 to 2010. He has been Chair of the Council of Economic Advisers in the Treasury and has worked as a special adviser to the Secretary of State in the Education Department as well as at DTI and DCLG. Most recently he was a Director in the Economics segment of FTI Consulting. In addition to working at senior levels of government, Dan ran the New Local Government Network think tank between 2002 and 2005.
Nearly two weeks on, and the dust has still not settled after this rather extraordinary snap election. The Conservatives juggle negotiations for Brexit with negotiations for forming an actual government, and the terrible disaster at Grenfell Tower brings further challenges.
Brexit is now in full swing and the ups and downs of negotiations will likely dominate thinking and media coverage for the next few years. Not an uplifting thought - unless you love mind-numbing detail combined with overweening rhetoric.
Most of us worry about what is going on with our public services. Operations are cancelled, there are bigger school classes, social care is in crisis, bin collections are less frequent and there are shorter opening hours for services.
Are these changes wise? Experts like the Institute for Government tend to think not and indeed there is a general consensus amongst academics and former mandarins that the only decent change in recent decades has been the creation of the Department for Work and Pensions.
How can charities work better with the public sector? That's a question charities often ask - sometimes with an air of frustration as they see the people they care about getting a raw deal from central or local government. It is also a question good local authorities, health chiefs and others are now asking, not least as the money dries up.
You might think that, with money tight, Whitehall would be interested in anything that helps the government do more with the resources they already have. That Ministers would jump at initiatives which will let them spend their money a bit better, on things that are tested and proven to work.
The way the public sector procures what it wants has been changing in recent times, and this looks set to continue. And this will affect organisations across the board, from charities to local authority commissioners.
Last month's Budget suggested that George Osborne has softened on the overall spending squeeze by the end of the next Parliament, but he still indicated more cuts for local government over the next few years. And things would be unlikely to be significantly easier should the General Election lead to a government of a different colour.
Politics, in many ways, is the same and, as we move into what will be a long and, for the politically disinterested, a tortuous and boring General Election campaign, we will see a dash for the centre ground.
At NPC we argue that every charity and every funder should try to improve their impact. But because in the sector we are all mission focused, we should always be sharing our knowledge too, even as we have to compete with them in different ways. And that sharing is not only about impact lessons, but issues around failure and mergers.
Breaking up, so the song tell us is hard to do but it seems all the rage at the moment. Scotland has teetered on the brink while UKIP and the Conservatives are at least up for us having a referendum on whether to break off from the EU.
At national level, if you are high up the greasy pole, you are always on duty, always making decisions, always at the beck and call of constituents, MPs, and especially the 24 hour media. Yet sometimes you know you are jaded and only operating at half speed. What you really need is a weeks' break - or longer.
18/11/2014 16:15 GMT
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