Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Whatever happened to NOIE?

In asking the question What happened to NOIE I know that the technical answer is that it was "split in two in March 2004 when Daryl Williams was the Minister for Communications, Information Technology and the Arts. And I also know from this interview that it had been Labor policy at the time to abolish it.

But in the context of responding to the Labor Government's consultation paper it is more than a little surprising that NONE of the work of either NOIE or the Office of the Information Economy in the old DCITA gets referred to.

Now NOIE was dysfunctional by including procurement with policy. But I've never quite understood why the IE part was folded into the Department. Was it because the Minister found the number of reports (ABDC, SBS, ACA, ABA, NOIE, DCITA in just the ICT part) too much? Was it a professional rivalry thing between the NOIE agency people and Departmental officers.

I'm keen to know because it looks to me to be the logical next step on Digital Economy policy to have another agency like the old NOIE. It needs to be that kind of semi-autonomous research and statistics house that is missing these days.

So if any of my readers know anything please fill me in.

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