Public servants encouraged to sharpen policy making skills

Public Service and Administration Minister Ayanda Dlodlo has invited public servants to enrol for a course offered by the National School of Government (NSG) aimed at sharpening their policy drafting skills.

The NSG has launched the Socio Economic Impact Assessment System (SEIAS) course, which is designed to help improve the quality of policies developed by government in the three spheres – national, provincial and local.

Policies and legislation brought before Cabinet need to go through a mandatory socio-economic impact assessment process to ascertain their socio-economic impact on the targeted population and the country at large.

Cabinet institutionalised the Socio Economic Impact Assessment System (SEIAS) on 1 October 2015.

The NSG course targets government officials and public office bearers in the three spheres of government, who are involved in policy making and legislation development. These are officials and leaders who are involved in commissioning, writing, research and analysis, monitoring and evaluation, and stakeholder consultation.

The SEIAS is an analysis tool aimed at determining the costs and benefits of a policy proposal, including public policies, legislation, regulations and other regulatory instruments.

“As a quality assurance tool, it improves public policy through designing and selecting evidence-based policy options. The goal is to ensure policy coordination and coherence, and for government to produce policies that are aligned with national strategic priorities.

“It is also aimed at minimising policies’ unintended consequences and reduce implementation risks. The NSG course will equip officials to undertake the SEIAS process meaningfully and efficiently,” Dlodlo said.

The online course is spread over four weeks and comprises the following four units:

– Conceptual understanding of the Socio Economic Impact Assessment System (SEIAS);

– Socio-economic context of policy implementation;

– Socio-economic impact assessment processes explained; and

– Communicating the SEIAS findings and recommendations.

Source: South African Government News Agency

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