News of another high-profile (if you’re into this sort of thing) Whitehall departure: this time it’s Mark Flanagan, who joined Downing Street in 2008 as head of digital, but subsequently became head of strategic comms. Mark’s Labour connections were no secret, so perhaps the biggest surprise is that he lasted so long.
He’s moving to Portland Communications, joining numerous former Westminster villagers including Tim Allan and George Pascoe-Watson, with a mandate to ‘put digital at the heart of the business… integrating online profile, social, search and mobile into every level of our client interaction.’
Mark deserves a lot of credit for the quiet good work done by the Downing Street web team over the last couple of years. It was he who first invited me in to talk about using WordPress, and it was his initiative to leap into Twitter: in both cases, giving an effective green light to the rest of government (much as Jimmy Leach had done previously with YouTube etc), and sparking so much of the innovation which has characterised the last couple of years.