Our recommendations

Governance of the National Security System.

The National Security System needs to be flexible, agile, and effective in responding to national security events and emergencies. It also needs to be resilient, because the risks it manages and the personnel involved in governing and operating the System change over time.

We recommend that the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet:

  1. sharpen the focus of governance of the management of national security risks and of national resilience-building by:
    • using the work it is doing to define national security risks to establish clear accountabilities for governance of the management risks, and reporting regularly against the accountabilities; and
    • rationalising the number of subgroups beneath the main governance boards and clarifying lines of accountability between the subgroups and the boards.
  2. strengthen the resilience of the National Security System by:
    • enabling easier and more efficient information flows, particularly of classified information, throughout the System;
    • capturing institutional knowledge to build a knowledge bank that people in the System can draw on for future responses;
    • capturing and applying lessons from activations of the System and exercises more methodically; and
    • introducing more methodical induction, training, and development of people moving into different roles in the System.