Posts By Todd Lyons

Dr. Govlove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Blog

(or or: Why you should join Twitter / start a blog immediately) Note: This post contains GCPEDIA links only accessible within the Government of Canada network. Blogging about blogging. How meta can you get? Not long ago, I made the acquaintance of a young, energized public servant. I was impressed by their1 enthusiasm, imagination, expressionRead… Read more »

On Career, Fatherhood & Parental Leave

When my wife became pregnant with our third child, I’d just ‘officially’ graduated with my Master’s degree and was working on casual contract for the Government of Canada. A few months later, I became a permanent (‘indeterminate’) employee, and among the benefits I was eligible to receive was Parental Leave Without Pay. Admittedly, this soundedRead… Read more »

I can be led, so lead me.

I’ve lost count of the number of times over the last decade that I’ve watched presentations that make reference to the generational differences in workplace motivation between the Baby Boomers and the younger generations of X (~1961 to ~1981) and Y (~1982 to ~1999). For the most part, they all tend to focus on theRead… Read more »

Open Formats and Open Source for Better Government

The Government of Canada is currently reliant on proprietary file formats and proprietary software applications, which lock it into a licensing bind with a single software manufacturer — Microsoft. There is not only a question of cost — as we pay a monopoly corporation for per-seat licenses to run software that already dominates the marketRead… Read more »

On My Transformation from Social Worker to Public Servant

I read somewhere that the (median) average age of entry into the Canadian federal public service is 34 years old. That fits me reasonably well; this is my second career. For my first 10 years of “professional” employment I was a social worker, and my speciality was child and adolescent mental health. It was theRead… Read more »

Privacy and The Thousand Tiny Knives

In privacy management, it’s the major data breaches that grab the big headlines. In personal brand management, it’s the high profile embarrassments resulting from carelessness, ignorance and poor judgment that capture public attention. Janine Krieber, Nathalie Blanchard, Stephen Fry, Tiger Woods… who’ll be next? Not you, certainly. For most of us, risks to our privacyRead… Read more »

Public servants: What are you broadcasting via social media?

It seems we’re regularly being served additional reminders about the way we sometimes use social messaging to our detriment, and with increasing frequency, how it is sometimes being used against us. Consider the Janine Krieber kerfuffle, where the wife of former Canadian Liberal Party leader Stephane Dion criticized the current state of the party inRead… Read more »

US Health Care: Why Privatization Is Inefficient – Part 4 of 4

Arguments Against Universality It is often argued that socialized medicine in the US would introduce a wealth of problems, worse than those currently faced. Government is often regarded as wasteful, rigid and out of touch with the real needs of its citizens. In comparison, private management of health care is often portrayed as offering increasedRead… Read more »

US Health Care: Why Privatization Is Inefficient – Part 3 of 4

The Industry of Illness It is a reality of our time that the same companies promoting health care products are also largely responsible for underwriting their research. Skepticism about this model of business has led to pharmacoeconomic studies of the popular antidepressants, which demonstrate a clear association between study sponsorship and quantitative outcome (Baker etRead… Read more »