Today I experienced another type of Groundhog Day when I discovered that the UK Government is reinventing a library of research that has been done countless times before. And countless times before it has been ignored.
It seems that when confronted by a mega issue the immediate response of Government (and most large companies) is to 'do some research'. It doesn't matter that we are drowning in research let's do a bit more. It delays having to make a decision or really do something.
We might be clueless what we will do with the findings but it looks like we are doing something.
So we have the Foresight 'Future of an ageing population' project that (in its own words) is:
Analysing the challenges and opportunities of an ageing society. This change will bring both challenges and opportunities for central and local government, with impacts on a wide range of public services. The ‘Future of an ageing population’ project will provide an evidence base to help identify options that will:
- improve quality of life for older people
- enable older people to participate more fully in society
- ensure everyone can access the tools and facilities to help them live a long and healthy life
It makes you want to weep!
So far it has produced dozens of reports - have a look.
Some are OK, most are the worst sort of academic mutterings. Lots of 'need for more research' and stuffed full of out of date references and motherhood conclusions.
Still it will make some good PR and no doubt give the impression that somebody understands what is going on. Dick Stroud