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The Digital Transformation Office’s success will depend more on the T part than the D part

Posted on by Stephen Collins in Posts | Comments Off on The Digital Transformation Office’s success will depend more on the T part than the D part

Yesterday, leading Australian tech journalist, Renai LeMay published a piece entitled The Inside Track: How the DTO’s Gov.AU project is coming unstuck. While I often like what Renai has to say on matters relating to the Australian tech sector, I’m not sure he’s entirely on track here. What I feel Renai has skipped over here is exactly what people like me and Craig Thomler have written about extensively over the years, and that Craig has addressed at length in his latest piece on the same GOV.AU alpha; that it’s not the digital part that’s at issue — it’s transformation, and in particular, transformation of culture and practices. I’m not sure that the alpha of GOV.AU should be seen as indicative of the DTO’s success overall. They’ve employed or engaged some of my industry’s (service design and user experience) best minds in this country. The model they’re using (and releasing publicly) is robust and …

Sketchnote from Towards a Unified Theory of Shiny New Things

Shiny and new – why are these still words for government innovation?

Posted on by Stephen Collins in Posts | 6 Comments

Last Friday, I attended DesignGov‘s event Towards a Unified Theory of Shiny New Things, largely as a catch-up on where open government, design thinking and government innovation are at in the Australian Public Service. I’ve been busy with private sector clients of late, and I was feeling a little rusty. I was hoping for some fresh ideas, evidence of substantial activity, an evolution of attitude towards government innovation, and some maturity around perceptions towards design thinking. Taking the glass half-full perspective, I’ve got to say I was delighted to see a significant number of new faces among the 70 or so people there. Naturally, there were a significant number of the old hands in the room as well, and that’s as it should be; you want a mix of experience and those for whom these ideas are new at any event, else you risk becoming an echo chamber. Helping the newer …

Innovation by hyoin min on Flickr

GovCamp 2013 – Where and how does government innovation happen?

Posted on by Nathanael Boehm in Posts | 2 Comments

At GovCamp Australia 2013 this week, there were two identifiable two groups of people who presented and talked about the topics of inspiring government innovation, empowering people and liberating capability. There were the service designers who spoke about the specifics of design and presented case studies, and the managers, public servants and academics who talked about innovation (in the abstract). How important is design to innovation? As a designer myself I strongly believe in the utility of design thinking and I wish the methods and techniques I use on a daily basis were part of the standard toolkit for those in government responsible for policy design and service delivery. But I fear that too much emphasis is being put on design when we talk about innovation in government and that there are other disciplines that should be represented. The other issue is that no one can actually pin down what …

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acidlabs is a service design and user experience studio based in Canberra, Australia. We work with clients to solve complex problems with design thinking.
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