Public Service Transformation Delivery
Head of Public Service Transformation Delivery
Philip McGrath was appointed Head of Public Service Reform in October 2021. Philip leads the Public Service Reform unit at the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform (DPER). The unit has responsibility for implementing the Government’s current reform framework Our Public Service, implementing the Government’s Public Service Innovation Strategy, Making Innovation Real, coordinating Ireland’s Open Government Partnership National Action Plan, outsourcing and emerging technology policy, and a number of other related policy areas concerned with the modernisation of public services in Ireland.
Before taking on his current role, Philip was the Department’s Public Service Innovation Policy Lead. Prior to joining DPER in 2014, Philip worked in the Department of Justice in the areas of asylum law and money laundering/terrorist financing regulation.
Philip holds separate degrees in law and business (HR), an international diploma in regulation and a Master’s degree in innovation and leadership.
Public Service Innovation
Public Service Innovation Projects Lead
Colin has overall responsibility for the development and oversight of the Public Service Innovation Fund and strengthening the connections with the Public Service Innovation Network. Colin manages the legal and administrative requirements surrounding the Fund and oversees certain initiatives outlined in the public service innovation strategy, Making Innovation Real. Colin also provides strategic leadership on the annual public service Innovation Week and associated events while identifying new and emerging innovation initiatives.
Colin joined the OPS team from the Laois and Offaly Education and Training Board where he served as Further Education Manager. Prior to this, he was Project Manager at SOLAS.
Colin is a graduate of National University of Ireland and the National College of Ireland with a background in Organisational Leadership and Education.
Public Service Innovation Fund and Strategy Manager
Chris is responsible for overseeing all aspects of the Public Service Innovation Fund. He liaises with relevant stakeholders throughout the fund’s lifecycle to provide on-going support to participants. He also ensures full compliance with all governance measures and coordinates fund related events
Chris is currently on secondment from the Defence Forces, where he has served since 2003. He has partaken in three overseas deployments to the UNIFIL Peacekeeping Mission in Lebanon and his background is established in operations, logistics, financial and project management.
Chris has completed a B.Sc in Logistics & Supply Chain Management (TU Dublin) and an M.Sc in Business Analytics from Smurfit Graduate Business School (UCD).
Public Service Innovation Initiatives Manager
Jade is responsible for managing the Innovation Network and Project Managers Network. She collaborates with colleagues across the public service to support them to develop an innovative mind-set and culture, and connects public service colleagues to share insights and learn from each other. Jade also oversees DPER’s Future Tech Challenge competition.
Jade joined the team from the Residential Tenancies Board, having worked in communications and strategic projects. She has an undergraduate degree in community development and a masters degree in marketing and management. Jade is currently undertaking a PgDip in Innovation Management in NUIG.
HR and Learning & Initiatives
Public Service Human Capital Lead
Within the Public Service Reform unit, Fiona has overall responsibility for the human capital aspects of the current public service reform programme.
Under the ‘people and development’ pillar of the reform programme, her priorities include: supporting the mainstreaming of strategic workforce planning, promoting equality, diversity and inclusion and encouraging and supporting personal and professional learning and development across the public service.
Fiona joined the team in 2018 with over 20 years as a HR professional in the private sector. She is a member of CIPD and holds an MSc in Business Administration from Trinity College Dublin.
Public Service HR and L&D Initiatives Manager
Ailís is responsible for driving and supporting reform initiatives, in particular those with a people and organisation dimension. This includes the mainstreaming of workforce planning, the promotion of equality, diversity and inclusion across the public service and developing and supporting the availability of appropriate learning and development interventions to support broader reform initiatives.
Ailís joined the OPS team from The Pensions Authority where she worked in HR, as PA to the Pensions Regulator and most recently in Pension Policy.
Ailís graduated with a B.A. (International) in Media Studies and Spanish from Maynooth University and a M.A. in Human Resource Management from National College of Ireland.
Dearbhla is responsible for driving and supporting reform initiatives, in particular those with a people and organisation dimension. This includes the mainstreaming of strategic workforce planning across the public service; the promotion of equality, diversity and inclusion across the public service; the development of appropriate learning and development interventions; working with public service organisations to assist in the implementation of ‘blended working’ framework; and working with key senior public service HR stakeholders to develop and support the Strategic HR Managers Network in advancing HR priorities.
Dearbhla joined the OPS team the Department of Finance where she worked in Corporate Governance. Dearbhla graduated with a BSc in Applied Mathematics from Maynooth University and has a Professional Diploma in Taxation Policy and Practice.
Public Service Reform Communications Manager
John is responsible for promoting all communications activities relating to the Our Public Service framework. An experienced communications specialist, he has a background in public affairs, journalism, and education. In 2020, John won a Public Relations Institute of Ireland/Public Relations Consultants Association Award for Excellence in Public Relations.
A former staff journalist with The Irish Times and Mediahuis Ireland, he holds a 1st Class MA in Political Communication from DCU, and an MA in Journalism from DCU.
Eoin’s role is to support and drive participation in the Public Service Reform Networks while also working with relevant stakeholders to manage public service reform events. He works with the Our Public Service innovation team to programme and manage the annual Public Service Innovation Conference and Week. Eoin also works closely with the Communications Manager to promote networks and events across all platforms.
Eoin joined the OPS team from An Garda Síochána where he worked in the pilot Operating Model. He worked in modernising financial systems and practices as part of reform initiatives within the organisation.
Eoin graduated with a B.A. (International) in French and History from Maynooth University and a first class honours M.A. in International Relations from DCU. More recently, he completed a Diploma in Public Relations at the Public Relations Institute of Ireland.
Central Programme Management Office
Central PMO Lead
Grace leads the Programme Management Office (PMO) for Our Public Service at the Public Service Reform Unit of DPER and is responsible for the Delivering for Our Public Pillar actions, including those relating to customer service policy, customer access and citizen engagement in the public service. She is secretary to the Public Service Leadership Board (PSLB) and Public Service Management Group (PSMG), and is currently leading on the development of the successor framework to OPS. She is also leading on a project to develop strategic foresight in the Irish Public Service. Grace represents Ireland at the OECD Public Governance Committee, is a member of the PGC Bureau and PGC vice-chairperson.
Prior to working in DPER, Grace’s career has spanned a number of Government Departments including Department of An Taoiseach, Department of Foreign Affairs, and the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment. Grace also previously worked as a senior economics and strategy consultant working with various private and semi-state companies. She hold a BA in Business and Economics from TCD and an MSc in Policy from UCD.
Customer Services Initiatives Manager
Nora joined the Innovation Team in October 2021 on secondment from the Department of Social Protection. With a background in economics, Nora brings a broad range of experience in customer service delivery and operations across the civil and public service. Focused on innovation and collaboration, Nora’s work involves developing, delivering and promoting a wide variety of customer service initiatives in consultation with experts from across the public service, including the Quality Customer Service Network.
Innovation Policy and Emerging Technologies Lead
Victoria has overall responsibility of leading on public service innovation policy and emerging technology experimentation and piloting (intelligent automation and RPA). Victoria ensures that public service innovation strategy Making Innovation Real commitments are implemented and that innovation and collaboration are embedded across organisations and sectors. Victoria also manages and coordinates the rollout of Robotic Process Automation across Government while driving experimentation with emerging technologies across the public service.
Victoria joined the OPS team from the Department of Education where she worked in the Central Policy Unit. Prior to this she worked in Central Section in DPER as the secretariat of Spending Review and delivering the annual Budget.
Victoria graduated with a B.A. in Economics, Politics and Law from DCU and a M.A. in Economics and Business Development from UCC.
Public Service Emerging Technology Manager
John supports the development of experimentation technology and policy. His most significant contribution thus far has been to co-author the RPA framework. His other work involved investigating and occasionally presenting on emerging technologies such as blockchain and artificial intelligence. His experience in AI and RPA has been called upon to review and contribute to several civil service publications. Prior to joining the civil service in 2016, John worked in IT for 20 years and operated a mental health organisation for 10 years.
John graduated with a B.Sc in Information Technologies from Trinity College Dublin and a B.Sc in Psychology from the Open University. He is currently undertaking a M.Sc in Artificial Intelligence from the University of Limerick.
Open Government Partnership Lead