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Independent News For The Australian Public Service
Edition Number 415. Updated Tuesday, 24 June 2014

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Call for PS to be innovation leader
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The Institute of Public Administration Australia (IPAA) has published a new report calling for a greater role for the public sector in leading and enabling innovation across Australia.

President of the Institute for Public Administration Australia (IPAA), Terry Moran, launched Shaping the Future Through Co-Creation, a report on Australian public sector innovation.

The report, written by Roy Green, Göran Roos, Renu Agarwal and Don Scott-Kemmis from the University of Technology Sydney and commissioned by IPAA National, contended that Australia's public sector must become an innovation leader.

Mr Moran said there was already a significant record of innovation achievement in the public sector in Australia.

"The next stage is for the public sector to become a leader and enabler of innovation through prototyping and diffusing models of change," he said.

IPAA report sees greater role

"This report provides a practical framework for managing stages of innovation in order to overcome barriers and normalise innovation practice."

The report says that as well as developing its own innovative practices the public sector must work with the private and community sectors to address major challenges facing the nation.

The report aimed to raise awareness of international developments in public sector innovation and stimulate debate about barriers and capability gaps in the Australian context.

Innovation was a 'team sport', the report said, and an innovative public sector needed Public Servants with the attitudes, skills and knowledge to work together to find, develop, and implement new ideas, and to build public sector organisations that could sustain innovation.

The report found innovation efforts could only be effective and sustained when an organisation developed a culture that supported innovation and a strategy that sought it.

"Innovation then becomes not a one-off event but a dimension of normal performance," the report said.

The report recommended an internal audit to identify barriers to innovation, specific opportunities for innovation and capacity development needs.

It also recommended the public sector implement management and human resource strategies to support the transition to greater innovativeness - through engaging, developing, motivating and rewarding staff, at all levels, to encourage their participation in innovation activities.

For the full report and list of recommendations visit this PS News link.

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