Whitehall is close to appointing a successor to Mike Devereau for the
pounds 75,000 post of head of the Central Office of Information.
The likeliest Whitehall contenders are tipped by insiders to be Charles
Skinner, head of publicity and corporate services at the Home Office;
Rob Haslam, group director of the COI’s network services and Mike
Ricketts, DTI director of news.
AlthoughGovernment departments are now allowed to run their own
campaigns and handle their own advertising, rather than having to go
through the COI, the COI has been fighting back. In the last 18 months,
it has won pounds 15 million in new advertising business from executive
agencies, including Investors in People and the UK Eco-labelling Board,
and it still retains the business of all government departments.
However, even if the Central Office of Information continues to prosper,
Devereau’s successor will inherit a continued threat of streamlining.