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Hasta la Victoria Siempre, GDS! This is not the end, no way
Bracken falls, but the fight for Agile Digital Transformation must go on
¡Bong! For Digital Millennials it was an epoch-defining event. Like the assassination of Kennedy, or the fall of Thatcher, everyone will remember what they were doing the moment they heard the shock news.
Perhaps you were blue-skying a gamification concept at Second Home. Perhaps you were at The Trampery, teaching some visiting schoolkids to code with HRH Prince Andrew, Duke of York.
Or perhaps you were simply savouring some artisanal offal at one of Shoreditch’s digital-friendly tripe popups.
But wherever you were, you’ll remember that moment for the rest of your life: the day that Mike Bracken resigned as head of GDS, the Government Digital Service.
No wonder Prime Minister Cameron convened an emergency COBRA meeting after being informed of Bracken’s resignation.
The Conservative administration was already reeling from the loss of the boy wonder civil servant Jordan Hatch in June. Airborne NATO warplanes broke away from their sorties in mid-air to request up-to-the-minute news from Martha Lane Fox, Baroness Lane-Fox of Soho-Fox-Lane's Twitter feed.
President Obama was concerned about the effect the change in GDS leadership would have on his ambitious climate change plans. Bracken was not only Supreme Leader of GDS, but also the government’s Chief Data Officer. Obama wanted to know: how can government even function without a Chief Data Officer?
Bracken has done for digital government what Che Guevara did for guerrilla warfare and cigars. Now he's taken my advice and will digitise the Co-op, an organisation I tried to buy out in 2013. The "Crystal Methodist" Mike Flowers will be a hard act to follow. Good luck, Mike!