Government Beyond Recovery: Towards a future-fit public sector


All times in Central European Time - Paris/Ljubljana (CET)

Day 1 :

18th October 2021
Time Zones
All session times correspond to Central European Time Zone (Paris time).
Global Launch
Opening Remarks: Building innovative and inclusive governments
The COVID-19 recovery presents an opportunity for governments to refresh their approach to public governance; to take a more deliberate approach to public and cross-sectoral innovation while ensuring that inclusion remains central to the work of government. This panel will reflect on how innovation and inclusion can stand as pillars for governance as governments seek to shape and steer recovery efforts.   
BLOCK 1: Anticipating the Future
Panel Discussion: Building national governance capacities to work towards desirable futures   
Governments worldwide are using strategic foresight and anticipatory innovation governance to get ahead of disruptions, to build resilience, and to make policy in a more robust way. Irreducible uncertainty and complexity highlight the limitations of traditional forecast-based planning. This session will demonstrate how governments are embracing other future-oriented governance approaches in practice.
BLOCK 2: Innovation in practice
Panel Discussion: Anticipation to bold missions: Shaping the future through missions and anticipation
With challenges like climate change, sustainable transport, clean oceans, cancer and pandemics ahead, short-term, single stakeholder approaches are no longer sufficient. Mission-oriented innovation has become one of the most significant vehicles for tackling complex challenges. How do you avoid lock-in in a mission setting and design missions that are adaptive and open for experimental designs? How do future and foresight methodologies fit into missions and is it possible to future-proof a mission? This session discusses the role of the state in shaping missions by convening and coordinating actors around wicked issues that require long-term, future-oriented governance.
Panel Discussion: Public sector skills for the Future
In a rapidly changing, globalised world, the need for a constantly adapting set of skills has emerged. Equipping public sector organizations with the vision and flexibility to adapt to changing circumstances is key. Developing effective talent management strategies can help manage the loss of institutional memory while bringing in and retaining new skills and competencies. This implies a shift from passive management to proactive engagement of leadership and staff and potential new competency and work organization models.
BLOCK 3: Managing innovation
Panel Discussion: Managing innovation in the public sector: From ecosystems & portfolios to action
How can governments support innovation efforts and approaches where they are most needed? Innovation portfolio management is becoming a core practice for intentional and proactive public sector innovation units seeking to steward innovation portfolios among an ecosystem of actors, including emerging strategies for catalysing and sustaining collective system change. This session will explore how innovation portfolio practices help build clarity of purpose for innovation, oversight of the interrelationships between innovation support activities, prompt ideas for change, and signal deficiencies and gaps.
Panel Discussion: Changing the relationship between government and citizens though democratic innovations
People’s expectations about participation in public decision making has changed. Citizens are less trusting of government, but are also more engaged on issues that affect them and their community. They expect to be involved in a range of ways that allow them to contribute meaningfully to decisions that impact them. Democratic innovations - institutions that deepen people’s participation in political decision making processes - have been shifting power towards citizens, allowing them to inform and shape how policies and services are designed. This session will explore examples of democratic innovations being designed and implemented in a way for citizen participation to be productive, and the effect this has on improving public decision making and strengthening society’s democratic fitness.
BLOCK 4: Democratic innovation and building trust in government?

Day 2 :

19th October 2021
BLOCK 5: Co-creation and collaboration for better governance
Panel Discussion: Behavioural transformations for a more sustainable world: behavioural science to support green public governance
How can governments better understand and change the behaviours that contribute to the climate emergency? How can behavioural science help policymakers to create more effective policy responses? This session will explore how behavioural science can support green public governance by providing tools to encourage the adoption of sustainable behaviours and by helping take into account how people are likely to respond to green reforms.
Panel Discussion: Innovation through Cross-Border Collaboration: Governing Global Challenges
The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the importance of collaboration across borders at all levels of governance, as governments respond to shared challenges characterised by greater interconnectedness and complexity. In this session, OPSI and the UAE’s Mohammed Bin Rashid Centre for Government Innovation (MBRCGI) will present their findings on the nature of the challenges for innovating across borders, as well as welcome experts and practitioners from around the world who have come up with innovative solutions to these challenges.
Panel Discussion: Building inclusive societies: The importance of co-creation
This panel will identify existing practices, new ways and levels of co-creating (informing, co-design, co-construction, co-experience) with stakeholders in the public sector. The session will explore successes, lessons learned, best practices and opportunities for co-creation. The panel will also ask the questions: under what circumstances do traditional methods (ex. coordinated centrally by the state) vs new approaches (ex. decentralized coordinated through public-private partnership) work? What does it take to transform the hierarchical approaches prevalent in the public sector in order to find optimal solutions and results and include stakeholders in policy development? The panel/workshop will explore potential opportunities and concrete examples to reflect on what is important when leveraging co-creation to deal with complex societal challenges.
Panel Discussion: Accounting for Innovation in CAF
One of the eight principles of excellence of the Common Assessment framework is Continuous improvement and innovation. Self-assessment of a public organisation supports the diagnosis of needed actions for innovation based in a co-creation model. This session will explore how public sector organizations are using the Common Assessment Framework to innovate, co-create among their employees, and build trust with the citizens through the services delivered. We will be presenting different experiences coming from all levels of government, to show how CAF will leverage the public sector efforts to promote innovation.
Panel Discussion: Inclusive services: Building trust in public institutions
The COVID-19 pandemic highlighted the importance of public trust for the effectiveness of public policies. Existing services and policy instruments were quickly adapted, meeting the expectation of citizens to keep them safe during the crisis. However, a key risk during crises and phases of recovery arises if citizens feel alienated, excluded or left behind. This can happen if public services do not reach all segments of the population according to their needs, at the time of policy design as well as delivery. OECD evidence, based on the population survey on drivers of trust in government, shows that responsiveness and reliability of public services are two main determinants of people’s trust in public institutions, alongside with perception of fairness in the process and outcomes, government integrity and openness. This session will analyse the importance of inclusive policymaking tools and processes (e.g. co-creation) to build trust, not only across groups of people and places but also different public institutions themselves.
BLOCK 6: Co-creation as a driver of trust
Panel Discussion: Building agile regulations for an uncertain future
The COVID-19 pandemic has forced governments to rethink how they regulate. As governments rebuild afresh, they must ensure that the innovation that will power economic growth and solve the world’s most pressing social and environmental challenges is not held back by regulations designed for the past. A more agile approach to the regulatory governance of innovation is needed. One that supports renewed economic growth, inclusive development and resilience to future shocks. This panel discussion will bring different perspectives to reflect on how to undertake this paradigm shift in rule making.
BLOCK 7: Experimenting towards a better future
Break / Closed Session
Workshop [Closed] YouthWise: The future of the public sector: Bringing worlds beyond reach closer with the imagination of youth of today
This workshop will bring together youth from the OECD Youthwise Council, Y7, Y20 and others to look at the future of the public sector. What better way to reinvent what is currently possible, than prepare for a government literally beyond the stars? During an interactive session, harnessing design fiction and other futures and foresight tools, we ask the participants to create speculative, and provocative, future scenarios for a new settlement in a planet that they will never see or experience themselves. What would you take, leave behind or create anew for a generation in a new context? Within facilitated breakouts, we encourage participants to look beyond what is possible, towards what could be in a totally different setting. Beyond the conference, insights from this session will help OPSI and partner organisations reverse-engineer the future of public sectors of today
Panel Discussion: Building Digital by Default Services
How can governments design and deliver public services in an era where digital has become the default while ensuring citizens are not left behind? This panel will explore how countries are: - Delivering omni-channel approaches that ensure no matter the channel someone chooses, they will always be able to access a consistent, joined-up and high-quality service - Working across the internal silos of public sector organisations to solve whole problems for users - Recognising the access needs of their citizens to make sure services are accessible to all - Using the physical infrastructure of government to support citizens develop the skills they need to thrive in the 21st century
Panel Discussion: Innovation friendly regulation
Well-designed laws can help to create the best possible conditions for innovation to flourish. Regulatory sandboxes and experimentation clauses could help set a safe testing ground, under regulatory supervision, for experimenting, collecting experiences, and testing new approaches, innovative technologies, products and services in a real-world environment. These experiences can then inform evidence-based policymaking. As practices differ globally, the aim of the panel is to present best practices and lessons learned with potential benefits and risks.
BLOCK 8: Experimentation and innovation in practice
Panel Discussion: Showcasing examples of Innovative public administration and digital public administration among the candidates the 2021 European Public Sector Award
The European Public Sector Awards (EPSA) brings together the lessons learnt from European best practices in three different categories. In this panel we will present three different candidate  projects to the award, in two of those categories - innovation and digital.
BLOCK 9: Future-oriented recovery
Closing Panel: Future oriented governance: Towards a future fit for all
What future do we want to steer towards? In the face of wicked problems, governments have the opportunity to leverage innovative governance tools and approaches to deliberately shape a better future; to address challenges before they become crises for future generations. This panel discussion will bring in multi-disciplinary perspectives to reflect on how the COVID-19 recovery offers a Launchpad towards better futures.