IOG to Iraq: Modernizing Government with International Partnerships

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Iraq Blog Post Group Photo
The IOG and UNDP meet with senior officials from the Kurdistan Regional Government. From left to right: Dani Srour – IOG Executive in Residence, Steve Tierney – IOG Executive Director of Learning Programs & Advisory Services, Zina Alibeck – Coordinator-UNDP, Chris Politis – Manager-UNDP, Maryantonett Flumian – IOG President, His Excellency Dr. Ali Sindi – Minister of Planning for the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), Zagros Fattah – Ministry of Planning (KRG), Dr. Haydar Sinjawi – Ministry of Planning (KRG).

Building off of previous collaborations with Iraq, as part of the United Nations Development Program, the IOG traveled to Iraq this February with the goal of providing information to the Iraqi and Kurdistan Region governments on the design of a Senior Executive Service (SES) governance model.

An SES is described as the cadre of senior officials holding top-level management positions in a bureaucracy. The SES consists of officials who are focused on results and have the capacity to assess requirements, arrive at options, provide innovation, lead implementation, and overall motivate public servants to develop effective links between political and bureaucratic levels of government.  Simply put, the SES concept is based on the premise that leadership makes a profound difference in the performance of an organization.

Ms. Flumian, President of the Institute on Governance, with Mr. Thamer Al-Ghadban Chief of the Prime Minister’s Advisory Committee, along with Mr. Chris Politis from the UNDP and senior Iraqi Officials

The IOG is working with the Government of Iraq and the Kurdistan Regional Government to present various SES design choices by way of presenting global findings and steps for implementation of this system of governance.   In recent years, Iraq has embarked on a major public sector modernization programme assisted by the international community and in particular by the UN family, an element of which is the SES. Indeed, the IOG has previously collaborated with the Government of Iraq and the Kurdistan Regional Government to conduct work regarding specific laws of governance, fiscal federalism and decentralization.

Here at the IOG, we understand that government structures, systems, and processes of current governments are under pressure due to growing challenges of active citizen participation, technological advancements, demographics, and globalization. Along with the Iraqi and Kurdistan Region governments, many governments worldwide are seeking new ways of governing, engaging partners, and delivering services that take into account modern challenges.  The IOG understands that in order to move towards modernizing governments, traditional working silos must be broken down, and innovation must be encouraged.  By adopting the four pillars of our advisory services, (1) citizen engagement, (2) collaboration, (3) managing identity, and (4) accountability and performance management, modernizing government becomes a realistic goal allowing for growth and new partnerships.

The IOG is excited to be a part of this continued effort towards modernizing government and thanks the Iraqi and Kurdistan Region governments for their wonderful hospitality!

Ms. Flumian speaking attended a large meeting of senior Iraqi Officials. (From left facing the camera) Luay Shabaneh, Program Manager UNDP, Dani Srour, Steve Tierney and Maryantonett Flumian from the IOG, Dr. Farhad Hussain Deputy Secretary General of the Council of Ministers, Dr. Hamed Ahmed Chief of Staff for the Prime Minister, (from the right with back to the camera) Mr. Obeid Freig Special Advisor to the Secretary General, Dr. Sami Matte Deputy Minister Planning, Dr. Mahdi Al-Alak Deputy Minister Planning

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Institute on Governance

Institute on Governance

Founded in 1990, the Institute on Governance (IOG) is an independent, Canada-based, not-for-profit public interest institution with its head office in Ottawa and an office in Toronto. Our mission is ‘advancing better governance in the public interest,’ which we accomplish by exploring, developing and promoting the principles, standards and practices which underlie good governance in the public sphere, both in Canada and abroad.

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