Key Learning Points
- Public services in Europe need reform to address the recurring, ‘wicked’ social issues.
- Four co-creation models were presented by Birgit Mager for innovating public services.
- The historic social power slope has shifted toward the public, consumers and citizens.
- Service design must move to enabling people to take care of their own communities.
- In public service design, empathy is the key to real transformation and return on value.
- Every £1 invested into public service design, returns £26 at service operational stage.
- Co-designing public services with users, is a risk mitigation process that covers failure.
Many social entrepreneurship tenets were presented both during the discourse at SPIDER, and the informal chats with over 300 delegates attending from several EU countries.
Designers’ Roles Resemble Social Entrepreneurs’ Tactics
— Mark Bennett (@BennettDublin) June 9, 2015
Parallels With The Sound Advice Path
Looking at the spiral chart in the image above, parallels emerge with the path IDK/Sound Advice has travelled since 2007. It’s possible to break these down into milestones once IDK/Sound Advice articulated its vision for change and built a stakeholder following.
- 2010: IDK received Ireland’s eGovernment award for its low-cost, cross-sector service.
- 2011: The National Audiology Review published, with input from multiple stakeholders.
- 2012: Mainstreaming policy for deaf/hoh children is published, with multi-sector input.
- 2013: Parents and activists secured public funding for pediatric, bilateral ear implants.
Summary: the path was opening for multi-sector input to Ireland’s hearing and education services for children with hearing issues, followed by speech services (a work in progress).
What’s Next, For The Spider Project?
By September 2015, the SPIDER project aims to have trained over 500 civil service personnel across Europe, in using design principles to innovate public services.
Like social entrepreneurship, the wave change effect needs to ripple across the public sector – where changemaker individuals must change systems from within the entity. In this process, they become social intrapreneurs (designers) inside their organisations.