From A&E waiting times to the Windrush scandal, beware bureaucratic targets

Last week, health secretary Matt Hancock signalled an important change of strategy. Accident and Emergency Departments have a target that 95 per cent of patients should be admitted, transferred or discharged within four hours. Hancock suggested that the target will be scrapped. Instead, wait times will be determined by clinical need. Cue predictable hyperbolic outrage. […]

The Windrush scandal and police failures show the dangers of bureaucratic targets

The Windrush scandal still bubbles away. The bureaucrats at the Home Office are being condemned for their harsh behaviour. But it is scarcely their fault – they are simply reacting in a way entirely compatible with the economic theory of rational choice. It emerged during the saga of Amber Rudd’s resignation that targets had been […]