Whatever the truth of the rumours circulating about a possible merger of the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) and the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS), there can be no doubt that the government needs to think hard about where it can find more savings. If plans are not afoot to consider how much could be saved from reforms to these two departments they most certainly should be.
They are both relatively recent inventions, coming into existence in their present forms in 1997 (DCMS) and 2009 (BIS) respectively. Possibly to appease the ego of Lord Mandelson, it was at this point that higher education found itself wrapped up into this strangely constituted ministry. Although it would save nothing, the first priority of the reform in this area should be to relocate this part of BIS into the Department for Education, putting David Willetts with Michael Gove.
What else might a sensible plan for reform of these departments look like?