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IPAA calls on public service to be innovation leader

by Staff Writers •
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Terry Moran, former secretary of the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet, released ‘Shaping the Future through Co-Creation earlier this month, calling on the public service to be more innovative. The report, commissioned by the Institute of Public Administration Australia (IPAA), outlines how the public sector can strengthen its standing as both leader and enabler of innovation.  

On releasing the report, Moran, who is the current president of IPAA, noted the crucial role of the public service in encouraging innovation, but said that the next step was leadership.

“This report provides a practical framework for managing stages of innovation in order to overcome barriers and normalise innovation practice.”

IPAA reminds readers that innovation isn’t the domain of people in white coats, but simply “the intentional implementation of a new idea which leads to change in practice with the aim of creating some form of value.”

The report provides examples of both barriers faced by government, and drivers of innovation, “including new demands from the community, exemplars from other jurisdictions, problem solving by staff, and proposals from partner organisations.”

The report also outlines innovation tools, including ‘focused innovation’ which “essentially enables organisations to improve existing products, services, processes, linkages etc…[and] ‘re-framing innovation’ [which] identifies possible new approaches and desirable futures, and is suited to addressing complex problems or situations where past approaches have failed to gain traction.”

Intermedium reported yesterday that Peter Shergold, another high profile former public servant, told the Australian Financial Review that outsourcing models employed by government have failed to encourage innovation. Shergold argued that when procuring, the focus should be shifted towards outcomes, and industry should be given greater responsibility to co-design.


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