[HN] People Powering Policy

Lead Research Organisation: Cardiff Metropolitan University
Department Name: Product Design and Development Research

Abstract

This project aims to identify if, where and how design research might enhance policy-making through greater citizen involvement. It will produce a Design for Policy Toolkit containing metrics, methods and tools to support academics and policy-makers to engage more effectively with citizens at appropriate stages of the policy-making process.

Design is an approach to problem-solving that departs from an analysis of user needs and involves users in jointly developing and testing solutions. Design is increasingly being adopted by government teams called 'Policy Labs' in an attempt to renew the legitimacy of public policy-making through greater citizen involvement'. Despite this, to date, 'there has been little academic research into design in the context of policy-making' (Kimbell, 2015).

The classic policy-making model in the UK is ROAMEF (Rationale, Objectives, Appraisal, Monitoring Implementation, Evaluation and Feedback) . For Joseph Lowe, Head of Economics Branch in the Treasury, "There is a need to enhance citizen engagement in policy-making. The challenge is to align design research with ROAMEF." This project seeks to identify if, where and how design research might enhance citizen involvement in the various stages of the ROAMEF policy model and directly addresses the AHRC priority to 'enhance the role of design research in policy'.

This fellowship builds on my experiences gained in the AHRC projects 'Mapping Design for Innovation Policy' and 'ProtoPolicy' as well as the European project 'SEE - Sharing European Experience on Design Innovation Policy', all of which used design methods to engage policy-makers and citizens. It also builds on my experience as the Emerging Researcher member of the AHRC Public Policy Advisory Group and attending the AHRC/Institute for Government course 'Engaging with Government'.

I have a strong track record in working with government and citizens in the context of design and policy. Over a number of years I have collaborated with the Cabinet Office Policy Lab, Welsh Government Innovation Team, Northern Ireland Innovation Lab and Scottish Government Ingage Team (see letters of support). I will participate in one-month immerse 'residencies' with these policy labs to test the tools, methods and metrics. Engaging citizens, policy labs, policy-makers, designers and academics in developing the Design for Policy Toolkit from the outset will help to ensure that the tools, methods and metrics are fit for purpose and adopted.

Planned Impact

A desire to generate meaningful impact in the policy-making arena is a key driver of this research. In order to foster engagement with and legitimacy for the Design Policy Toolkit I will build a common understanding among key stakeholders. A Pathways to Impact Action Plan has been developed identifying a range of actions targeted at five beneficiary stakeholder groups.

1) Citizens - Citizens will be actively engaged during the research process participating in hands-on workshops to develop, test and refine the Design for Policy Toolkit. They will be approached via relevant community and advocacy groups depending on the policy topic selected by the Policy Labs. They will receive selected project updates particularly via social media (e.g. Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn etc.).

2) Policy Labs - Four Policy Labs (Cabinet Office Policy Lab, Welsh Government Innovation Team, Northern Ireland Innovation Lab and Scottish Government Ingage Team) will be actively engaged in the research and benefit from knowledge exchange during the one-month residencies. The Policy Labs will be inducted in the use of the tools, methods and metrics to use in their mainstream practice. However, according to a recent report by the European Commission there are 10 Policy Labs in the UK and these Policy Labs will also receive project updates, the Design for Policy Toolkit and be invited to the launch event. A series of joint-press releases will be issued between Cardiff Met Press Office and the four Policy Labs throughout the project.

3) Policy-makers - The Policy Labs are connected to the Civil Service Policy Network with 17,000 users. The Labs are crucial for disseminating the Toolkit through the network to ensure its adoption after the end of the project. Each Policy Lab engages with between 800 and 2,000 civil servants per year and these policy-makers will participate in projects with the Policy Labs using the Design for Policy Toolkit. The project outputs and findings will be presented at six policy events (brokered by the Policy Labs) including targeted at the Treasury and Civil Service Policy Network. After the end of the project, I would like to develop a commercial offering for other Policy Labs around Europe (65 Policy Labs in Europe).

4) Academics - I am the Emerging Research representative for the AHRC Public Policy Advisory Group. The group will be regularly updated on the project findings and the vision for the future of design and policy research. They will also be crucial for identifying other relevant policy research initiatives (such as, for example, the What Works Network) as impact channels. Furthermore, with support of existing contacts, I will identify and connect with four 'Thought Leadership Mentors' from other academic institutions who will both guide my Leadership Development Plan and the Pathways to Impact Action Plan. It is an objective within my Leadership Development Plan to create a network of academic and policy stakeholder active in design and policy and to formalise the network potentially by applying for network grants. I would also like to engage with the Institute for Government (having undertaken the AHRC/Institute for Government course 'Engaging with Government') to explore the feasibility of integrating the Design for Policy Toolkit into the training module for Emerging Researchers. The project outputs and findings will be presented at six policy events (brokered by the Thought Leadership Mentors) including targeted at the What Works Network. It is also planned to submit two peer-reviewed journal articles, one in a policy journal and one in a design journal. It would also be an ambition after the end of the project to engage with the Thought Leadership Mentors to co-author a book on design research for policy.

5) Designers - The Design for Policy Toolkit will be presented at two design events (brokered by the Design Council - see letter of support) including Lab Works Global Network conference.

Publications

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Whicher A (2018) Design for circular economy: Developing an action plan for Scotland in Journal of Cleaner Production

 
Description Through this funded research, I have developed an approach to engaging with the stakeholders of Policy Lab to define the operating models, services, skillsets and projects appropriate to Labs. I have also developed and validated a Design for Policy Model and iterative Toolkit. These have been tested with over 200 civil servants across the UK (Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland and at national level) as well as across Europe and beyond.
Exploitation Route I am hoping that Policy Labs as well as other multidisciplinary government teams will be able to use the model and toolkit to enhance citizen participation in policy-making. I also hope, if appropriate, to commercialise elements of the research for the university.
Sectors Government, Democracy and Justice

URL http://pdronline.co.uk/Portfolio/people
 
Description My research has focused on identifying if, where and how, design research can better support policy-making (particularly in Policy Labs). I have undertaken a number of strategic collaborations including with HMRC Policy Lab, Northern Ireland Innovation Lab, FCA Behavioural Insights and Design Team, Welsh Government Permanent Secretaries Group, Belfast City Council Continuous Improvement Team and the Latvian School of Public Administration. All of these organisations were looking for new research tools and methods for engaging with their users and stakeholders, I worked closely with them to explore how design could enhance citizen involvement in public policy and public service development. The early iterations of the Design for Policy Toolkit (main project output) have been adopted into the training and capacity building programmes of these organisations and have begun to instigate a chance in mindset in how to involve the public more collaboratively in public governance.
First Year Of Impact 2017
Sector Government, Democracy and Justice
Impact Types Policy & public services

 
Description Design of Latvia 2020
Geographic Reach National 
Policy Influence Type Citation in other policy documents
Impact Based on my research on Design Ecosystems, the Latvian Ministries of Culture and Economy have mapped and analysed their Design Ecosystem and develop a Design Strategy for Latvia.
URL https://www.km.gov.lv/uploads/ckeditor/files/EN/Design/Design-of-Latvia-2020_WEB.pdf
 
Description Latvian School of Public Administration
Geographic Reach Europe 
Policy Influence Type Influenced training of practitioners or researchers
Impact Capacity building for 30 innovation leaders across all central government departments in Latvia to introduce service design in a policy environment through hands-on workshops with research tools and methods. The impact is ensuring that policy-making and public service development are more user-centred.
 
Description Supporting FCA Behavioural Insight and Design Unit
Geographic Reach National 
Policy Influence Type Influenced training of practitioners or researchers
Impact Introduction to service design and policy design research tools and methods to FCA staff. User Research on a project about regulation for pawnbroking. Ideas generation and prototyping concepts for testing. Impact has been to change pawnbroking guidelines to better protect customers.
 
Description Supporting the development of HMRC Policy Lab
Geographic Reach National 
Policy Influence Type Influenced training of practitioners or researchers
Impact Supported HMRC Policy Lab to define the operating model, services, skillsets and projects for HMRC. Hosted a series of hands-on workshops on service design in a policy environment with research tools and methods to upskill 30 staff members. The impact is more user-centred public policy and public service development. HMRC Policy Lab has gone one to implement a number of strategic policy projects using the research tools and methods provided.
 
Description Supporting the development of a Welsh Government Innovation Lab
Geographic Reach Local/Municipal/Regional 
Policy Influence Type Influenced training of practitioners or researchers
Impact Supported the Welsh Government Permanent Secretaries Group to define the operating model, services, skillsets and projects for a Welsh Government Innovation Lab. Hosted a series of hands-on workshops on service design in a policy environment with research tools and methods to upskill 30 staff members. The impact is a change in mindset towards a more user-centred public policy and public service development.
 
Description Supporting the development of the Northern Ireland Innovation Lab
Geographic Reach Local/Municipal/Regional 
Policy Influence Type Influenced training of practitioners or researchers
Impact Following an evaluation of the Northern Ireland Public Sector Innovation a series of recommendations were made to evolve and enhance the operating model, services, skillsets and projects for iLab. Furthermore, we have hosted a series of hands-on workshops on service design in a policy environment with research tools and methods for Lab staff as well as the wider Northern Ireland Civil Service between 2016 and 2019. The impact is a chance in mindset to ensure that policy-making and public service development are more user-centred.
URL http://pdronline.co.uk/Portfolio/evaluation-of-niil
 
Description Commercial funding - Policy Design Workshop
Amount £2,500 (GBP)
Organisation Civil Service College 
Start 11/2017 
End 11/2017
 
Description Commercial funding - Service Design Training (Greenhouse)
Amount £9,650 (GBP)
Organisation Northern Ireland Civil Service 
Start 10/2017 
End 10/2017
 
Description Belfast City Council Continuous Improvement Team 
Organisation Belfast City Council
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Supported Belfast City Council's Continuous Improvement Team to define the operating model, services, skillsets and projects for an internal design team. Hosted hands-on workshops on service design in a policy environment with research tools and methods for 30 staff members.
Collaborator Contribution BCC arranged participant recruitment and logistics for the workshops.
Impact A report with the findings from the workshops.
Start Year 2019
 
Description FCA Behavioural Insight and Design Unit 
Organisation Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Introduction to service design and policy design research tools and methods to FCA staff. User Research on a project about regulation for pawnbroking. Ideas generation and prototyping concepts for testing.
Collaborator Contribution FCA covered participant recruitment and logistics for the workshops.
Impact The user research has led to a prototyping and testing phase with the public.
Start Year 2018
 
Description HMRC Policy Lab 
Organisation HMRC HM Revenue & Customs
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Supported HMRC Policy Lab to define the operating model, services, skillsets and projects for HMRC. Hosted a series of hands-on workshops on service design in a policy environment with research tools and methods for 30 staff members. HMRC Policy Lab also participated in 'Lab Evolutions' hosted with Policy Lab in the Cabinet Office.
Collaborator Contribution HMRC Policy Lab arranged the event logistics and participant recruitment.
Impact Report on Developing HMRC Policy Lab (not an academic journal article).
Start Year 2017
 
Description Scottish Enterprise Wider Innovation Team 
Organisation Scottish Enterprise
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Supporting the Scottish Enterprise Wider Innovation Team to evaluate their By Design grant voucher scheme and propose opportunities to improve the scheme.
Collaborator Contribution Scottish Enterprise arranged participant recruitment and logistics for the workshops.
Impact A report with the survey findings.
Start Year 2017
 
Description Welsh Government Permanent Secretaries Department 
Organisation Government of Wales
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Supported the Welsh Government Permanent Secretaries Department to define the operating model, services, skillsets and projects for a Welsh Government Innovation Lab. Hosted a series of hands-on workshops on service design in a policy environment with research tools and methods for 30 staff members. WG Permanent Secretaries Group also participated in 'Lab Evolutions' hosted with Policy Lab in the Cabinet Office.
Collaborator Contribution WG covered participant recruitment and logistics for the workshops.
Impact A report (not a journal article) with the outcomes of the workshops and capacity building sessions.
Start Year 2018
 
Description BEDA European Design Forum 2018 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact Hosting a hands-on workshop to explore the next EU Design Action Plan as part of the BEDA European Design Forum 2018 with around 30 members of the Bureau of European Design Associations followed by a presentation at the InnovationID conference hosted by KEPA Business and Cultural Development Centre in Thessaloniki, Greece.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL https://www.interregeurope.eu/design4innovation/news/news-article/3741/design-driven-innovation-is-e...
 
Description BEDA Insight Forum: What's the future of design for policy-making? 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact I host an international roundtable with the Bureau of European Design Associations (BEDA) called Insight Forum: What's the future of design for policy-making?
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://pdronline.co.uk/blog/2017/12/policy-lab-what-is-the-future-of-design-for-policymaking
 
Description Design and Innovation Showcase in Latvian State Chancellery 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact A presentation on design for public service and public policy development at a Showcase in the Latvian State Chancellery.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description Developing Belfast Service Design Model 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact Supported Belfast City Council's Continuous Improvement Team to define the operating model, services, skillsets and projects for an internal design team.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description Developing HMRC Policy Lab 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact Supporting the development of HMRC Policy Lab through a workshop with three government departments.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://pdronline.co.uk/blog/2017/10/hmrc-service-design-in-a-policy-environment
 
Description Developing Welsh Government Innovation Lab 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact Supported the Welsh Government Permanent Secretaries Department to define the operating model, services, skillsets and projects for a Welsh Government Innovation Lab.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description EU Industry Day, Intangible value creation through design 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact EU Industry Days, first organised by the European Commission in 2017, is a high level inivation only initiative to engage with big and small business from priority sectors across Europe to engage, inspire and collaborate. In our first appearance at EU Industry Days, BEDA facilitated an interactive workshop with 60 representation from industry, government and research organisations from across Europe - the only stakeholder session in the event organised by design and creative industries.
The plenary session was opened by the Commission President, Jean-Claude Junker, who focused on the Commission's economic ambitions until 2027.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL https://www.beda.org/news/beda-at-high-level-eu-industry-days/
 
Description Innovation by Design Showcase, Valletta 2018 Capital of Culture 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact A Showcase of where design has had an impact on policy instruments across the EU hosted as part of the Valletta Capital of Culture 2018.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL https://www.interregeurope.eu/design4innovation/events/event/1621/innovation-by-design-event/
 
Description Innovative Design Strategies towards Sustainable Future, ALICE Conference, 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Undergraduate students
Results and Impact Innovative Design Strategies towards Sustainable Future, ALICE Conference, Ljubljana, Slovenia 17.10.18
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL http://www.fd.si/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/PROGRAMME-ALICE-CONFERENCE-2018.pdf
 
Description International Design Policy Roundtable - Singapore 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact I was invited by the Government of Singapore as an expert for their International Design Policy Roundtable.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL https://www.interregeurope.eu/design4innovation/news/news-article/2186/international-design-policy-r...
 
Description International Design Policy Roundtable 2018 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact Follow on event to the International Design Policy Roundtable 2017 in Singapore bringing together practitioners from across Europe and Asia to explore good practices in developing, implementing and evaluating Design Policy. Brussels, Belgium, 20.11.18
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL http://pdronline.co.uk/blog/2018/11/next-practice-in-design-action-plans-part-1
 
Description Journey Towards an Irish Design Strategy, DRS2018 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other audiences
Results and Impact Presentation as part of DRS2018 to an audience of academics, practitioners and public sector leaders.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL http://www.drs2018limerick.org/participation/proceedings
 
Description Lab Evolutions, Cabinet Office 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact What is the lifecycle of a Policy Lab? How have the operating models of Policy Labs evolved? What tools and techniques are most effective for fostering innovation in the policy process? How might we upscale and embed the lessons on a more system-wide scale? These are some of the questions that it feels timely for a small group of Labs to come together to explore. While Policy Labs seem to be popping up around the world, some are also closing their doors. There is an opportunity to share insights and consolidate the lessons in order to enhance the resilience of Labs. Design is entering the lexicon of government but there are still a number of barriers to its wider up-take in policy and service development.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description Meeting with BEIS 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact Meeting with BEIS to provide evidence of the impact of Brexit on university funding.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description MoJ Showcase: Designing for Crisis 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact Presenting my Fellowship findings at an MoJ Showcase: Designing for Crisis.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL http://pdronline.co.uk/blog/2018/06/moj-showcase-designing-for-people-in-crisis
 
Description Presentation World Design Summit Montreal 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact Presentation World Design Summit Montreal as a Leadership activity.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://pdronline.co.uk/blog/2017/10/world-design-summit-2017
 
Description Public Service Design, Latvian School of Public Administration 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact A series of four hands-on workshops to support innovation leaders across the Latvian civil service to use service design and policy design research tools and methods.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description Riga Creativity Week (RADI) 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact Presenting on trends in design policy at the Riga Creativity Week including a Q&A session with the Latvian Minister of Culture.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL http://www.radilatvija.lv/en
 
Description TAFTIE Policy Forum: Design-driven Innovation; it's New Frontiers 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact Presentation on trends in design policy for innovation agencies across Europe. TAFTIE is the European Association of leading national innovation agencies. TAFTIE Policy Forum: Design-driven Innovation; it's New Frontiers, Brussels, Belgium 21.11.18.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL https://taftie.org/sites/default/files/TAFTIE%20programme%20-%20final.pdf