Last week I illustrated my post about the mergers and demergers of Whitehall with a very bad picture of a very neat illustration of the timelines of government departments in tube map style. Steph Gray responded to my plea for help in finding a cleaner version of the picture and linked me up with its custodian in BIS.
So I now have a high resolution version, though it came with a health warning, not guaranteeing complete historical accuracy – which turned out to be important shortly afterwards, when Patrick Dunleavy left a very helpful comment pointing to a more rigorous treatment of the subject, albeit one not so visually striking and covering only the last twenty years.
This is the BIS-produced diagram which was in my earlier post (click on it to see a larger version):
This is the diagram Patrick Dunleavy pointed out to me, taken from Making and Breaking Whitehall Departments: A Guide to Machinery of Government Changes by Anne White and Patrick Dunleavy and published by the Institute for Government just last week – and clearly worth a thorough look in its own right (again, click on the image to see a slightly larger version):
And finally a splendid bonus in the form of a tongue in cheek extrapolation by the BIS team of departmental changes out over the next century and a half:
So now we know where we have been and where we are going. Nothing can possibly go wrong.