(That is me, Peter Smith, from a few years ago. I’m the one without the hat.)
Seasonal greetings and good wishes to all our readers and thanks for the support you have given us over the first three months of Public Spend Matters Europe. We have over a thousand visits a week to the site now, so we appreciate that, and we hope to provide some useful and interesting information for you.
But for 2015, we need to get a wider spread of public sector people across Europe reading, we want to engage more with the public procurement academic community, we would like guest articles (from academics, solution providers, practitioners), and we would really like to get some articles in languages other than English! There are a few of our targets.
And 2015 is going to be an interesting year, we are sure, for public sector procurement. The recent new Procurement Directives are going to become law in most individual countries during 2015. Whilst they seem to give procurement professionals some welcome extra flexibility, they will also no doubt create some new issues and problems. In particular, we need to look out for how such “flexibility” might lead to favouritism, poor value and even more fraud and corruption.
The economic and political situation will also be interesting for everyone in Europe. The economy in many countries is looking weaker again, but the oil price decline should help most European nations considerably. But the rise of nationalism and often right-wing political parties in many countries is a concern, and also has some implications for public procurement – we are likely to see even more pressure for us to “buy local / national”. What seems certain is that procurement and procurement issues are going to stay on the front pages of our newspapers and will be a high priority for all public bodies.
Anyway, all that is for us to look forward to in 2015. If you are having a break, we hope you enjoy it, and we will be back next Monday December 29th. Happy Christmas from all of us at Spend Matters!