Irish civil servants are ageing. Over the past twenty years, the proportion of staff in the 40 to 60 age category has increased almost four-fold. At the same time, numbers of staff under the age of 30 have considerably declined. The problem is significant in a number of departments. Based on 2003 data, over half of all staff in the Office of Public Works are over the age of 45, with other departments, including Arts, Sport and Tourism, Communications, Marine and Natural Resources, Defence, Environment, Heritage and Local Government and Transport also having large cohorts (greater than 40%) aged over 45.
Ageing in the Irish Civil Service: A Human Resource Management Response highlights the importance of developing a number of HR initiatives as a means of planning for and managing the large number of staff departures and consequent loss of experience which both ageing and decentralisation will generate.