Business and Government Interactions Project – Finalising stage 1 and a big thank you

[Originally published on Australian Government DesignGov under a Creative Commons 3.0 BY AU licence]

What has been happening at DesignGov with the project on ‘how might we dramatically improve business and government interactions?’

The DesignGov team has been very busy finalising the materials of the first stage of our project (reframing the problem), for consideration by the Secretaries Board of the Australian Public Service.

We’d like to take the opportunity now (before getting swept up in the next stage) to give a big thank you to everyone who has participated, helped, contributed and given time to support this cross-agency project. We’d also like to issue an invitation to come and hear about what was found through the project and what will happen next.

Thank you

A project like this – one cutting across agency responsibilities and interests, and relating to multiple interest groups outside of the public service, but not done in a traditional model of a ‘lead agency’ – is unusual and has, at times, involved a steep learning curve.

The project has also been experimental with its methodology, combining elements of design thinking, innovation, horizon scanning as well as more traditional public sector practices.

To help with these aspects, the project has been a very collaborative one, involving not only investment but many other types of support from a whole range of people and organisations. Twelve agencies provided investment (either seconded staff or a financial contribution) and there was also support from multiple other agencies, organisations, groups and individuals. This support ranged from helping run workshops to sharing experiences to discussions.

We’d like to give particular thanks to our colleagues at Australian Customs and Border Protection Service, the Australian Taxation Office and the Department of Industry, Innovation, Climate Change, Science, Research and Tertiary Education for their efforts. We’d also like to recognise the time and effort of the many business people, business intermediary groups and public servants who participated in interviews and workshops and our survey or who put forward ideas through our ideas platform.

What happens next?

We have submitted our project report and associated prototyping prospectus (roughly in keeping with what was originally envisaged in the project Design Prospectus) for consideration by the Secretaries Board at their August meeting.

We will then seek to publish the materials and commence the second stage of the project (the prototyping phase – reshaping experiences), and work with interested organisations and individuals on the specific concept areas for improvement.

Before the prototyping gets fully underway, we will be giving a public presentation on the project and its findings in Canberra on Thursday 15 August, followed by an opportunity for some networking. If you would like to attend and hear about what we have been doing, and what will happen next, we invite you to register by Tuesday 13 August. We hope to see many of you there – alternatively we will be posting a number of blog posts about the project soon.