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CAF - The Reference Model for Quality in Public Sector Organisations: All you need to Know to Implement the Common Assessment Framework, Maastricht

© Kevin Bergenhenegouwen / PDC
datum 22 mei 2019
plaats Maastricht
locatie O.L. Vrouweplein 22 Toon locatie
organisatie European Institute of Public Administration (EIPA)

The Common Assessment Framework (CAF) is a unique tool for improving the quality of public sector organisations under the patronage of EUPAN (European Public Administration Network).

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SKU: 1920601 Categories: European Public Management, Improvement Tools

The Common Assessment Framework (CAF) is a unique tool for improving the quality of public sector organisations under the patronage of EUPAN (European Public Administration Network). More than 4000 public sector organisations in 55 countries are using CAF. The CAF 2013 version has been translated in more than 28 languages. Because of its universal applicability the CAF has been constantly evolving. Administrative practitioners, quality managers, organisational developers and academics from the European Union have formed the CAF into a European Guide for excellent public governance.

New researches from the European Commission and EIPA (EUPACK, Toolkit for Quality of Public Administration) prove that CAF improves the performance of public sector organisations and contributes to Public Administration Reforms. Studies of CAF-users show the impact of CAF on the improvement of services and the increasing of customer satisfaction (e.g. Survey on CAF implementation in Austria).

The basic idea of CAF is that every public-sector organisation wants to achieve excellent results (e.g. comprehensive citizen service, fast and correct building permissions, well understood information on the website, high knowledge of the employees). It defines five so “enablers” which empower the organisation to provide these excellent results for customers, employees, citizens and society. Above all is the Leadership (1) which sets the strategic direction and creates organisational foundations. An excellent leadership uses instruments of “Strategy and Planning” (2) and “Human Resource Management” (3), cooperates with “Partners and manages Resources” (4) such as budget, knowledge, and IT sustainably. Based on these principles the organisation defines and documents the internal “Processes” (5) and develops them permanently.

The core of CAF is questionnaire with approximately 200 examples which capture the quality of public sector organisations (ministries, directorates, departments, agencies, regional and local administrations). Together the management and employees assess “their” organisation based on the “questionnaire” and thus recognise its strengths and potential for improvement.

What you will learn in this course:

This two-day course introduces the CAF model and the process of CAF implementation. It explains the background of CAF and its development from a quality management model to the European Guideline for excellent public governance.

By the end of the course, you will:

  • Be able to implement the CAF.
  • Learn how to implement the CAF model, the scoring system and the self-assessment process.
  • Understand the roles and responsibilities of the CAF-actors and the role of the National CAF Correspondents and the European CAF Resource Centre.

Who is this course for:

Top and middle public managers from ministries, agencies, EU institutions, regional and local administrations, etc. responsible for quality and change management, performance management, organisational development and public administration reform. Furthermore (newly appointed) CAF-programme managers, CAF coaches and facilitator, CAF-Users and CAF Correspondents.

Course methodology and highlights

Based on the principle of involvement the course will provide presentations, discussions, group works, CAF*labs with online support.


WEDNESDAY 22 May 2019



Registration of participants



Introduction and kick-off

  • Quality in the Public Sector: what’s that?
  • Be aware of change, we all want change BUT…

Thomas Prorok, Deputy Managing Director, KDZ Center for Public Administration Research, Vienna. EIPA CAF external expert.

Fabrizio Rossi, CAF Desk Officer, European Institute of Public Administration (EIPA), Maastricht



Being excellent - Achieving better quality in public sector organisations with CAF

  • CAF: The European Guideline for Good Public Governance
  • The development of Quality Management and CAF
  • The principles of excellence - Results and outcomes of the organisation

Thomas Prorok



Coffee break



CAF lab - Understanding the CAF

We test, experiment, play and practice CAF following the motto “Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn”

Participants and presenters all together



Lunch break



CAF in detail. Looking towards CAF2020

  • 28 criteria which bring change to the organisation
  • Good Practices of CAF implementation
  • News from CAF2020

Thomas Prorok, Fabrizio Rossi



CAF assessment and scoring

  • Scoring enablers and result from 1 to 100
  • Continuous improvement by planning, doing, checking and acting
  • Defining strengths, areas for improvement and improvement actions

Fabrizio Rossi



Coffee break



CAF lab - Scoring

We test, experiment, play and practice CAF following the motto “Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn”

Participants and presenters all together



End of first day


THURSDAY 23 May 2019



The way of change - planning the CAF journey

  • The CAF implementation from project assignment to CAF-action plan
  • You are not alone - The European CAF network, EUPAN and the National CAF Correspondents
  • Services of the European CAF Resource Centre

Thomas Prorok, Fabrizio Rossi



Coffee break



CAF lab Self-Assessment Workshop

Participants and presenters all together



To be defined: Important CAF terms

  • Who are “my” customers, citizens, stakeholders, partners, politicians…?
  • What is the outcome and output of my organisation?
  • Can I adjust the CAF model to the requirements of my organisation?

Thomas Prorok



Lunch break



Roles, responsibilities and prerequisites for the CAF implementation

  • What are CAF programme manager, self-assessment group and leadership doing in the CAF process?
  • How to facilitate self-assessment workshops
  • Tips and tricks - Recognising and preventing potential obstacles

Thomas Prorok



The Effective CAF User - The label for the best

The procedure of external feedback as reward for excellent public-sector organisations.

Fabrizio Rossi



Coffee break



CAF lab - Action Plan Workshop

  • Prioritising the improvement actions
  • Defining CAF actions
  • Open Feedback Forum

Participants and presenters all together



End of second day

Course venue

European Institute of Public Administration (EIPA)

O.L. Vrouweplein 22

6211 HE, Maastricht

the Netherlands

Programme Organiser

Ms Winny Curfs

Tel: + 31 43 3296320



The fee includes documentation and refreshments. Lunches, a reception or dinner are included if mentioned in the programme. Accommodation and travel costs are at the expense of the participants or their administration.


EIPA offers a 10% discount to all civil servants working for one of EIPA’s supporting countries, and civil servants working for an EU institution, body or agency.

Who are the supporting countries?

Civil servants coming from the following EIPA supporting countries are entitled to get the reduced fee: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom.

For all other participants, the regular fee applies.


Lunches, the reception or dinner will be served at a restaurant in town. Special dietary requirements (e.g. vegetarian, diabetic) can be indicated once you receive the confirmation of the seminar.

Hotel reservations

EIPA has special price arrangements with a number of hotels. All hotels are within 10 minutes walking distance from EIPA. Should you wish to make use of this possibility, please book directly via the links below. Payment is to be made directly and personally to the hotel upon checking out. At the time of booking, please mention in the requested field the EIPA project number for your course.


Confirmation of registration will be forwarded to participants on receipt of the completed online registration form.


Prior payment is a condition for participation.

Cancellation policy

For administrative reasons you will be charged €150 for cancellations received within 15 days before the activity begins. There is no charge for qualified substitute participants.

EIPA reserves the right to cancel the activity up to 2 weeks before the starting date. In that case, registration fees received will be fully reimbursed. EIPA accepts no responsibility for any costs incurred (travel, accommodation, etc.).



European Institute of Public Administration (EIPA)

Het Europees instituut voor bestuurskunde (beter bekend als The European Institute of Public Administration - ofwel EIPA) streeft ernaar om de kennis van ambtenaren die zich met de EU bezighouden te vergroten door het ontwikkelen en organiseren van trainingen. Het instituut wil wetenschappelijke kennis en praktische 'know–how' met elkaar verbinden. EIPA bestaat al meer dan 35 jaar.

Het hoofdkantoor van EIPA is gevestigd in Maastricht en heeft dependances in Luxemburg en Barcelona. Gemiddeld nemen 14.000 nationale en Europese ambtenaren per jaar deel aan de trainingen. Daarnaast biedt EIPA ook consultancy, onderzoek en op maat gemaakte programma’s/trainingen aan. Bij EIPA werken circa 120 hoogopgeleide medewerkers.


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