Governments traditionally don’t share information and learnings and they are often slow to evolve. OneTeamGov is an innovative community that spans the globe, bringing together individuals who are committed to radically reforming government services and learning from each other. OneTeamGov are an entirely volunteer-run network of individuals who continue to share ideas, project learnings, new ways of working, and continue to push government to be better for all.

Innovation Summary

Innovation Overview

What the problem is:
Being a civil servant in central and local government can be challenging. Civil servants not only have to deal with changing political landscapes but also limited resources, bureaucratic processes, and opposite perspectives. In addition, government is held to a high degree of accountability. The complexity and dimensions of for instance sustainability or pandemics, require cross-domain decisions and actions from traditionally non-collaborative parts of government. These issues combine to result in slow-moving change and outdated and/or out of touch policies, programs and services.

However, government across the globe often share the same battles. Our societies are similar, our public servants have similar educational backgrounds and experiences, and often our bureaucratic processes are similar as well.

Despite our similarities, we are not in the habit of sharing information, ideas, or learnings on what we’ve done more spontaneously.

Governments are often notorious for not only not sharing information between departments at the same level, but also across departments in their own country. Internally, we are also known for keeping policy separate from design and delivery.

What the innovation is:
This is where OneTeamGov comes in. With the need to share ideas across policy, digital, and service delivery continually increasing and the influx of individuals into the public sector wanting to learn and be innovative, a community was needed to foster the connections between these like-minded individuals.

A place was needed where anyone, regardless of their profession, discipline or background, could come to talk about government:
- giving better advice
- offering better services, or
- being a better place to work.

At the heart of it, OneTeamGov are a community united and guided by a set of principles. Together, OneTeamGov are working to create a movement of reform through practical action.

Their community is made up of people who are passionate about public sector reform (they deliberately want this to be wider than just government), with the emphasis on improving the services they offer to citizens and how they work. They believe the public sector can be brilliant, and are committed to making it so.

The 7 principles:

- Work in the open and positively: As a community; everything we do will be documented and made to share. Where conversations happen that can’t be shared, the wider learning still will be.

- Take practical action: Although talking is vital, they will be defined more by actions than the things they say. They will create change by taking small, measured steps every day.

- Experiment and iterate: There is no one way to ‘do’ reform. They will experiment with design, and put user-focused service design thinking into everything they do, learning from and with each other. They will test, iterate and reflect.

- Be diverse and inclusive: The approach to inclusiveness and diversity is driven by a simple desire to better represent the citizens served. They’ll put effort into making that so, by balancing events, making sure teams are reflective of society at large and by making sure they have a range of citizen and team voices in the room with them.

- Care deeply about citizens: Work for users and other citizens affected by your work; everything done will be guided by impact.

- Work across borders: OneTeamGov believe that diverse views make outcomes and services better. They will be characterised by their work to break down boundaries between groups. This means OneTeamGov will work across: professions, departments, sectors and borders

- Embrace technology: They are passionate about public sector reform for the internet age. OneTeamGov will be a technology-enabled community, using online tools to collaborate, network and share.

How they do things: The OneTeamGov community connect, network, learn, and share methods and information through running events, seminars, podcasts, training, workshops, and informal meetups. What started off as unconferences in London has spread through to the rest of the UK, Canada, Finland, Sweden, Australia, New Zealand, Norway, Scotland, Wales and more.

Who benefits: One Team Gov is providing the structure for engaged public servants to talk about and explore the things that are most important to them.

“Being part of the One Team Gov network has helped me take part in discussions that have developed my thinking on the use of data and technology to support policy formulation and operational delivery.”

“More than anything, OneTeamGov recognises that alone each of us cannot change ingrained power structures, incentives or systems — but that together we can be the very change we wish to see, and make government better.”

They want to grow the community, welcome those who think differently, share ideas, methodologies, and learnings; challenge the status-quo, bring people together, and create spaces for innovation to occur.

Innovation Description

Innovation Development

Innovation Reflections

Project Pitch

Supporting Videos

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Year: 2017
Level of government: Other


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