Monday, 26 April 2010

FCO Stakeholder Positioning Chart for Papal Visit

In a follow-up article on the recent "error of judgement" at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), the Daily Mail has revealed the identity of the junior official who emailed the offensive document. The authors comment:
It is believed that Mr Mulvain, who lives in East London, escaped punishment because he was given authorisation to send the memo by a more senior civil servant, who has since been 'transferred to other duties'.
It might also be believed that Mr Mulvain is something of a scapegoat, perhaps. The identity of the "more senior civil servant" will presumably leak out at some stage; which will be more interesting.

The graphic above, published by the Mail, (click to enlarge) gives the "Positioning Chart" for stakeholders in the Papal Visit. It offers a fascinating guide to the thinking of the FCO.

CBC (Catholic Bishops' Conference) is put as much less positive but far more influential than the Archbishop of Westminster; but still slightly less influential than the Vatican. Right up at the top of both influential and positive are Number 10, the British Embassy to the Holy See and Tony Blair. Is this wishful thinking? Strange that Jim Murphy, the guy who is supposed to be running the whole show is negative and slightly non-influential. I wouldn't agree that Richard Dawkins and the National Secular Society are non-influential, let alone on the far end of that scale.

The FCO staff, who discreetly positioned themselves as quite positive but non at all influential, have, since the release of the memo, taken an embarrassingly lengthy jump diagonally downwards and to the left of the chart.

Reading such trendy civil service style charts is a bit like reading tea leaves but it may show something of the priorities of HMG in relation to the visit of the Holy Father. Families, the sick, the disabled, and pro-life groups do not seem to feature (pro-choice groups are mentioned).

Other acronyms:
DECC - Department for Energy and Climate Change
DFID - Department for International Development.
DCMS - Department for Culture, Media and Sport
DCSF - Department for Children Schools and Families
TFL - Transport for London

(No idea what VAMP is - Video and Music Performers? Vesicle-Associated Membrane Proteins?)
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