2016: A year of change, turbulence and public impact

It’s been quite a year. A year which has seen governments buffeted by geopolitical divisions, the ongoing refugee crisis, fragile growth and an environment where the unexpected – Brexit, the prospect of President Trump – has become the expected. It’s clear that the need for effective government to help address the challenges in society has rarely been more important.

The Centre for Public Impact (CPI) can help. In 2016, we have brought leaders together at events around the world – from Sydney to Singapore, Washington DC to Rio de Janeiro – in order to share stories of success and better understand the challenges of achieving positive outcomes.

In October, as part of our new website, we published the Public Impact Observatory, a unique, free-to-use online library of public policy case studies, which evaluates the success of policies across the world in delivering public impact.

All the case studies, more than 200 of them, are assessed for their public impact using CPI’s new framework the Public Impact Fundamentals – a systematic attempt to understand what makes a successful policy outcome and help leaders and policy makers understand what can be done to maximise the chances of achieving public impact.

And in 2016 we have published more than 170 stories of public impact from around the world. We’ve learned how education standards are rising in the Indian state of Haryana;  been briefed about blockchain by one of the world’s leading exponents; and heard the inside scoop about how Prime Minister Trudeau’s government in Canada is seeking to deliver on its agenda.

We’ve also heard from city mayors, spoken with the World Bank President, discovered what former Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard is up to and, in addition, published our first podcasts and a series of briefing bulletins on public entrepreneurshipdesign, deliverology, evidence, social impact bonds and digital government.

But what were the most highly read stories of 2016? Read on to find out…


Beth Blauer: pushing performance across US government. From her career in juvenile protection through to her new role at John Hopkins University, Beth Blauer is driving positive change in government. She tells us about her experiences – and the importance of data in driving delivery and better performance


The politics of performance in Punjab. Chief minister of Punjab, Shehbaz Sharif, is on a mission to transform public services across his province. He explains how placing data at the heart of decision-making is leading to real improvements for 100 million people


Mission Possible: creating a smarter and better US government. Improving the effectiveness of public policies and helping rebuild public trust in government are the twin priorities facing new President of The Volcker Alliance, Tom Ross. But he’s not one to flinch from a challenge


Briefing Bulletin: Deliverology – the science of delivery. Governments exist to deliver results for their citizens but when most political leaders arrive in office, they find that delivering results is the hardest part of the job. This Centre for Public Impact and Delivery Associates Briefing Bulletin explains how government leaders around the world have come to understand this challenge better – and to develop a solution


Why no government can afford to ignore the needs of young people. Entrepreneur, business leader and G20 advisor – Holly Ransom has many strings to her bow. She tells us about her new leadership role at the United Nations and giving voice to young people around the world


Rethinking public services for the future. Demographic change, inequality, austerity and the ongoing digital revolution are threatening to rip up the rule book of what has gone before. In this report, Sir Peter Housden, former Permanent Secretary of the Scottish Government and Permanent Secretary of the UK’s Department for Communities and Local Government, turns the page and considers what the public services of the future might look like


Lessons from the UK’s policy lab. Andrea Siodmok and her team at the UK’s Policy Lab are blazing a trail across the civil service. She tells us about designing new services around people’s experiences


Laws from the OPM Lab. Stephanie Wade is not one for the quiet life. As director of the Innovation Lab at the Office of Personnel and Management, she is driving design-led innovation across government – and having quite an impact…


Podcast: In conversation with… Francis Maude and Mike Bracken. Francis Maude, former Cabinet Office minister in the UK, and Mike Bracken, founder of the UK’s Government Digital Service sit down with CPI’s Danny Buerkli to talk digital and government transformation; achieving disruptive change; making reforms sustainable and much more…


The time to deliver is now. Few government careers have been as focused on delivery as Sir Michael Barber’s. Here, he tells Adrian Brown about lessons learned and challenges ahead