Archives for November 18th, 2002

EVALUATING HUMAN CAPITAL

Abstracts, PublicNet: 18 November, 2002

By Harry Scarbrough and Juanita Elias.This report examines the intangible asset of the knowledge, skills and initiative possessed by employees. Although most organizations recognize that employees are their most valuable asset, little is done to evaluate just how valuable it is. The authors argue that it is possible for organizations to measure and manage human capital using methodology designed to suit their own needs and goals. They quote a number of high profile case studies of private sector organizations that are making progress in relation to managing and measuring their human capital. They also show that the human capital perspective provides a new rationale for the role of the HR function, where HR is no longer viewed as a cost centre, but rather an asset provider.

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DIGITAL TV PILOT FOR CONNECTING COMMUNITIES

Headlines, PublicNet: 18 November, 2002

A pilot project has been launched to connect 1600 people on a housing estate in London to each other and to the outside world. The project which is led by Newham Council, and supported by public and private sector partners, is one of seven around the UK which forms part of the Department for Education and Skills’ “Wired-Up Communities” initiative. The uniqueness of this project is that it is trialing the use of interactive TV.Residents on the estate are being given access to a range of free entertainment and information services, including internet, email, estate website and videos as well as a unique PC on your TV, through a set top box linked to the television in peoples’ homes. The service also includes the estate’s own TV channel and website and a documentary film “Meet the Neighbours”, featuring the residents, will be one of the early productions. Developing the TV channel to engage local people is seen as one of the most challenging features of the project.

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FREEDOM OF INFORMATION IMPLEMENTATION REACHING STARTING POST

Headlines, PublicNet: 18 November, 2002

The first stage of implementing freedom of information legislation has been set in train with a ‘commencement order’ requiring public bodies to publish details of what information they will make available, how it will be published and whether there will be a charge. Central department must publish these details by the end of November. Other deadlines for Publishing Schemes are: February 2003 for councils, June 2003 for the police, October 2003 for the health service and January 2004 for schools and universities. Full implementation of the Freedom of Information Act will start in January 2005.Publication Schemes are seen as the first step towards a culture of openness which is an essential requirement for the public’s right of access to function effectively. Although there will be some restrictions on what information can be disclosed, the presumption will be that the public will have access to all records held by central and local government, the health service and the police.

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