The Role of Management Boards in the Public Sector – Proceedings Report
In the public sector, terminology is not always a reliable indicator of function, and the term “board” can refer to a range of very different entities. This is true even within a single jurisdiction. For example, the Government of Canada includes a number of organizations whose title includes the term “board” in a sense different from that used in this paper – referring variously to administrative tribunals (the Immigration and Refugee Board), organizations with a regulatory mandate (the National Energy Board), investigative and advisory bodies (the Canadian Transportation Accident Investigation and Board), operational agencies (the National Film Board) and organizations mandated to manage public monies (the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, which in turn has a board of directors). Neither is the term a guide to organizational form – a “board” may be anything from a ministerial department to a statutory agency, a departmental corporation or a Crown corporation. The situation is comparable at the provincial level.
This paper captures the proceedings of the workshop on the role of management boards in the public that occurred on February 29, 2013 at the Institute on Governance. Presentations were delivered by the Executive Director of the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council’s Corporate Performance and Strategy Division, and by the Executive Director of the Public Governance Exchange. Thirteen public sector officials from the federal and provincial levels participated in the discussions that followed. A PGEx discussion paper identified key areas for discussion by the workshop. This proceedings paper identifies the key themes and conclusions that emerged during the workshop.