The Public Service is the administrative arm of the Executive Government, accountable to the relevant ministers and the Parliament. The array of government departments and authorities is charged with the responsibility of advising the government of the day and implementing government and parliamentary decisions.
The Public Service is also known as the “bureaucracy”. In Britain, it is commonly called the “civil service”. It comprises the government departments, either federally or in the States, and also includes the members of Government Business Enterprises, Statutory Authorities and other Agencies.
The role of the Public Service is two-fold:
- to advise the government of the day on policy matters
- to implement government decisions and parliamentary legislation.
The Public Service has traditionally operated under a system of permanent tenure designed to ensure its independence and impartiality. This has been broken down in recent years with senior public servants being placed on fixed-term contracts.
- A more detailed explanation of the Public Service, including statistics
- Federal Government Departments, Agencies and Authorities
- Listen to the theme from the classic TV series Yes, Minister.
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- Jun 19, 2001: The Australian Public Service: Speech By Prime Minister John Howard
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