Work 2.0 Lab

Work 2.0 Lab is a new collaborative working and learning environment. It is available to all agencies and civil servants in government and other organisations involved in the 2-years experiment. The purpose is to promote better, higher quality ideas, solutions and decisions on cross-cutting matters outlined for example in the government program. Work 2.0 Lab provides the structures and platforms (environments, spaces, networks, methods) for collaborative learning needed to work together.

Innovation Summary

Innovation Overview

Work 2.0 Lab is responding to the commonly identified current acute needs in Finland, such as 1) need to phenomenon-based preparation 2) increase of location-independent and mobile work 3) work in collaborative spaces 4) smart & digital work 5) collaborative learning and 6) networking across sectors and silos.

State and public administration in Finland have for several years been purposefully building a route towards a working culture which is based on cross-functional collaboration and agile experiments. Future working models and spaces in Finnish public sector are increasingly being built on working together and learning form each other. Also 12 ministries are developed to function as a unified Council of State. Working in ecosystems and collaborations between different actors, building test platforms for public service development etc. are also more and more on agenda.

Work 2.0 Lab is open also for various networks, been formed during the last 10 years. There is a growing movement towards agile, cross-functional, open minded and future oriented professional networks open to all civil servants in Finnish Government / state Administration. These networks are normally loosely organized and self-directing, teams of experts from different ministries and agencies, with various backgrounds, education and expertise. More often these networks work in ecosystems where actors come also outside the Government organizations, i.e. from municipalities, private sector companies, associations etc. What unites the network members is a strong commitment and will to build up a working culture, based on a ‘whole of government’ mind set and a ‘crossing the silos’ way of working. Participants are not nominated to represent their background organizations. Instead, they are volunteers with strongly committed approach to do their work better and more effectively.

Many civil servants are willing to test and adopt modern, experimental, digital and agile ways of working. As well Work 2.0 Lab's aim is to help to make a systemic change which aims to look relationships and explores the dynamics between different actions and parts. It also helps civil servants to work in a more dynamic and solution oriented mode, increased common understanding and instead of treating the symptoms, solving the systemic problems. Work 2.0 Lab is also a development process that enables the emergence of a new, humancentric "Civil Servant 2.0"-identity.

The principles guiding the work at Work 2.0 Lab are
- Cross borders, be curious
- Explore, try, learn, fix
- Invite others to join
- Let things emerge
- Forget prejudices, surprise and be surprised
- Prototype, try, and quickly implement

New roles have also been built to support the Lab -concept: Hosts welcomes visitors to the Lab and introduces the house and explains the concept and idea of the Lab. Facilitator supports users in planning and implementing the events and workshops. However, the user brings to the Lab the themes to be worked on and the substance knowledge. Users also take responsibility for the proceeding of the work.

As a summary: We encourage officials and organisations to come to the Lab when they
- are facing a complex phenomenon or new entity
- are looking for new perspectives and approaches for preparation
- want to try, learn and get results fast
- need as much different kind of knowledge and experience as possible
- want to promote an issue that does not yet have an “official” administrative headquarters

Work 2.0 Lab -experiment provides a platform for various user experiences that can be used to design a more permanent operational model and space solution based on collaboration. At best, similar platforms would emerge elsewhere in Finland.

Innovation Description

Innovation Development

Innovation Reflections

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Year: 2019
Level of government: Other


  • Developing Proposals - turning ideas into business cases that can be assessed and acted on

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