CAF Publications

CAF Improvement identification, prioritisation and implementation

CAF Study Slovak PresidencyUnder the Italian Presidency of the Council of the EU during the second semester of 2014, the focus was on the impact of the use of the Common Assessment Framework (CAF) on public sector organisations, in particular in the Sector of Education. One of the most remarkable conclusions of the study, undertaken by EIPA on demand of the Italian Presidency, was that scores of all eight CAF results sub-criteria increased after each CAF implementation in 12 cases.

The present study builds further on the findings of the Italian study, broadening the scope to organisations of the whole public sector and describing more in detail the different good practices that were installed in 20 organisations from 13 different countries. As the CAF stimulates the holistic approach of the Total Quality Management to improve the performance of the public sector organisations, based on the Plan Do Check and Adapt (PDCA) circle of continuous improvement, the interconnection between the enablers and the results criteria is fundamental. To understand possible impact lines, theoretical insight is not sufficient. Examples of concrete success stories, evidence-based, described by the process owners themselves, indicating what kind of efforts they undertook to improve their performance are indispensable.

Thanks to the engagement of all our European National CAF Correspondents, the Slovak Presidency and the European CAF Resource Centre at the European Institute of Public Administration EIPA received 43 cases and had the difficult task to select 20 of them. The selected organisations were found to be inspiring and innovative, dealing with themes of the Strategy Paper (July 2016 - July 2019) of the European Public Administration Network (EUPAN) and the Rolling Programme of the different presidencies in the coming 3 years. [Executive summary] [Full study]


CAF-Anwendung in Österreich
Ergebnisse der Umfrage aus 2015
At the end of 2015, the Austrian CAF Resource Centre KDZ implemented a CAF survey in Austria based on a questionnaire. The findings and insights of the report are very useful for CAF Users. To a certain extend they are in line with the European study of 2011 but deepen out certain aspects. Download


Diversity in public administrations – A self-assessment toolCAF books
The composition of our society and the current labour market is becoming increasing diverse. This development is the result of numerous factors: the increasing rate of female participation in the employment market, globalisation and the resulting migration phenomenon, the ageing population, etc.

If the public administrations want to fulfil their allocated tasks in the best way possible, they must also take this increased diversity into account. On the one hand in the way in which the relationship with citizens is given shape and on the other hand in the way the organisation and human resources available are managed.

In 2004, the joined Belgian Ministers for the Civil Service of the various administrative levels decided to set up a combined action that promotes diversity and equal opportunities within the public administrations.

The concept of ‘diversity’ was made operational by focusing on those measures relating to the management of the organisation and/or the human resources management, taking the unique characteristics of the staff into account with regard to their gender, nationality or origin, disability or age.

Consequently measures are highlighted that promote participation in public office of:
• men and women, where these are underrepresented;
• persons of foreign origin;
• persons with a disability;
• young or older people.

The Federal Government Department for Personnel and Organisation together with the Institute for the equality of women and men, the Centre for equal opportunities and combating racism, and the General management of disability benefits of the Federal Government Department of Social Security elaborated a self-assessment tool on diversity management, based on the CAF2002 model.
[EN]  [FR]  [DE]  [NL]

Quality in Education

Experiences from the work with implementing TQM in the field of education. Gaining results from locally designed quality system and quality improvement actions, in proportion to a long-term commitment and objectives of sustainable quality.

How the CAF model strengthens staff participation
Developing and involving staff in management activities is a key part of the rhetoric of all Total Quality Management tools (TQM), which acknowledges that quality improvement can only be successful when employees have the necessary skills and authority to participate. Whilst these ideals form a central part of all TQM tools, not all are successful in creating a long-term culture of participation; the paper explains how the Common Assessment Framework (CAF) succeeds in this.
[EN] [FR]

Five Years of CAF 2006: From Adolescence to Maturity – What Next?
A study on the use, the support and the future of the Common Assessment Framework
Patrick Staes, Nick Thijs, Ann Stoffels and Sven Geldof

The purpose of the study is three-fold: (a) to collect information on the use of CAF and the dissemination and support in the Member States; (b) to analyse whether there is a need to improve the CAF model itself; and (c) to look for new opportunities to further spread its use.

Two questionnaires were developed: one for CAF national correspondents and one for the CAF users. Both questionnaires integrated the three research questions. The questionnaire for the CAF NC collects answers on these questions as follows. Firstly, The CAF NC report on the dissemination of and the interest for the CAF in their country. Secondly, they provide us with information on the support of the CAF. Last but not least, they give us their views on the future of the CAF and how the CAF model could be improved. The second questionnaire gathers information on the experiences and views of the CAF users. Firstly, we get an insight into their experiences of implementing the CAF. Secondly, we learn about their successes and failures. Thirdly, the CAF users give us an idea of what the CAF 2012 could look like.

This research report consists of two substantial parts. The first part presents the results of the CAF NC survey, the second part those of the CAF users’ survey. The report ends with an overview of the main conclusions and the main points for attention from both surveys.

The complete study: [EN] [FR]
The Executive Summary [EN] [FR]

Survey & Annexes
Survey in [EN]
Information on the criteria and sub-criteria of the CAF 2006
Information on the ten steps to improve organisations with CAF
[AT] [CZ] [DE] [ES] [FR] [GR] [HU] [NL] [IT] [LT] [PL] [PT] [RO] [SI] [SK] [NO]

Growing Towards Excellence in the European Public Sector
A decade of European collaboration with CAF

Patrick Staes and Nick Thijs (ed.)

In 2000 the Innovative Public Services Group (IPSG) of the EUPAN (European Public Administration Network) presented the Common Assessment Framework (CAF). After ten years of CAF in 2010 and more than 2000 registered CAF users, it is time to look at the state of affairs - what has been achieved in these ten years and - maybe even more importantly - what do we want to achieve in the next ten years? more...

CAF works – Better results for the citizens by using CAF
This is an initiative of the Austrian Presidency in cooperation with EIPA's CAF Resource Centre. The brochure presents 29 excellent CAF applications from 15 countries and 8 different sectors, where the use of the CAF has led to improved results. The brochure is a reference for the application of the CAF model and should support the target of having 2000 registered CAF Users by 2010. 
[EN] [FR] [DE]   

Survey 2005 & 2nd European CAF event:
Study on the use of the Common Assessment Framework in European Public Administrations & 2nd European CAF event, Luxembourg, 1-2 June 2005
Synthesis paper prepared by EIPA under the Luxembourg Presidency and presentations/conclusions of the Second European CAF event.  
[EN] [FR


Greek guide on how to implement the CAF
The Hellenic Ministry of the Interior

Report on the State of Affairs of the CAF after Five Years
Patrick Staes and Nick Thijs
Eipascope Article, 2005/3

Quality Management on the European Agenda
Patrick Staes and Nick Thijs
Eipascope Article, 2005/1 

CAF in the Czech Republic
The administrative district Prague 13

Olga Vidláková - January 2007

The CAF and innovative eGovernment actions at local and regional level
eGovernment final report 

Improving the Quality of East and West European Public Services
Author/Editor: Elke Löffler and Mirko Vintar - 2004

CAF Self-assessment Work Book
28 or 60 searching questions and contrasting pairs of examples
Juha Heino, Kirsi Levä, Kari Tuominen - 2006

Quality Management Tools in CEE Candidate Countries: Current Practice, Needs and Expectations
Dr. Christian Engel
- EIPA 2003/P/02, 104 pages
Only available in English, ISBN 90-6779-176-8, €28

Study on the use of the Common Assessment Framework (CAF) in European Public Administrations
Synthesis paper prepared by EIPA for the 41th meeting of the Directors-General of Public Administration, Rome,
Dr. Christian Engel and Seán Fitzpatrick - December 2003
[EN] [FR] [DE

Common Assessment Framework: The State of Affairs
Dr. Christian Engel
Eipascope Article, 2002/1