We are the Centre for Public Impact
We act as a learning partner for governments, public servants, and the diverse network of changemakers leading the charge to reimagine government so that it works for everyone.
What we do
Governments are under increasing pressure to bring about the results people expect, while remaining trusted and relevant. And yet, the systems, structures, and processes of government today are often not set up to respond to the complex challenges we face as a society.
That’s why we have an emerging vision to reimagine government so that it works for everyone. Our work as a learning partner involves two complementary sets of practices: sensemaking and action-learning.
Sensemaking is where we create space for a diverse group of changemakers to collectively make sense of the complex challenges people face.
Action-learning is where we work closely with government changemakers to adopt an experimental, iterative mindset to day-to-day activities.
"In our work with governments we observe that there is a significant slippage between policy aspirations and citizen impact. There are many reasons for that and we at Boston Consulting Group believed we could make a contribution to addressing the causes of this failure to deliver the desired impact, but others inside and outside governments could too. That is why we founded the Centre for Public Impact in 2015."
“We are immensely proud of CPI and all it is doing to push boundaries around how to deliver impact, in part by developing new models for delivering public services so that citizens really do benefit, and thereby rebuild confidence in government and the public service.”
How we work
We have the courage to speak the truth, to challenge without fear and tackle the difficult questions
We respect differences, we seek to understand them and we look out for one another.
We are positive about what we and governments can do for our societies.
We are non-partisan, we work together and seek ideas and solutions across the divides.
Flexibility with responsibility
At CPI, we believe that an indispensable part of doing great work is having the ability to take care of ourselves and our loved ones.
We encourage staff to take Paid Time Off/Annual Leave throughout the year, as well as an extended leave of absence when major life circumstances call for it.
We also believe that we need to be aligned on the what of our work but can be flexible in how this work is accomplished in any given week.
We describe this idea as “flexibility with responsibility”
Clear roles and goals
Each of us knows what our job is and what constitutes success for ourselves and our teams.
We seek to explicitly balance our own needs with the broader team’s needs at any given time and we are incentivised not just by our own success but also by the success of those around us.
Each of us takes ownership for managing our time and our responsibilities as well as planning for time to rest and play.
We each participate in creating and expecting a culture where we can ask for help when we need it without judgement, fear, or penalty and where we proactively offer help, feedback, and support to each other.
Measuring "the right things"
Instead of defaulting to measuring “total hours worked in a week,” we want to measure things like “work delivered well,” and “our individual and collective learning and growth,” and “the advancement and realisation of our mission and vision.”
Each of us should be challenged with ambitious goals - we shouldn’t consistently be working into exhaustion, nor should we consistently have too little that we’re motivated and challenged to accomplish.
In it together
All of us agree to collaborate and communicate to support our collective flourishing in general, including when scheduling our work and our time away from work.
Our commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion
To advance our purpose of reimagining government so that it works for everyone, CPI seeks to attract and support a diversity of backgrounds, experience, talent and thought.
We are committed to dealing openly and transparently with the conflicts inherent in our work, in the hope that, by doing so, our solutions can have a ripple effect far beyond CPI's boundaries.
In reimagining government, we must commit to centring the voices of historically underrepresented communities in all of the work that we do.
Diversity enriches our commitment to a more just society and enhances our ability to enact change, so governments can help society to respond more effectively to complex challenges.
Working as a team
We believe that power in government should be shared – and we do our best work when we also share the power to decide and innovate across our own team too.
We determine collectively what we work on using the Objectives and Key Results (OKR) process.
We each have the freedom and responsibility to use our skills and judgment to serve CPI’s purpose by choosing which key results to work towards, and which roles to play.
Challenge and support
Within and across teams, we have people at all levels who challenge and support us and provide advice and career guidance.
We make decisions through the informed consent of those impacted by the decision.
We "default to open" when it comes to sharing data, information, knowledge, and insights.
Who we are
Meet our team
We are an international team of innovators, researchers, communicators, dreamers – and a few recovering consultants – who draw on the insights of our Board, Fellows and People’s Panel to help shape and test our ideas and initiatives.
Where we are
We are divided among four teams:
Based in London, this team works to align and advance our vision for government worldwide, while providing functional coordination and support to regional teams in the areas of finance, operations, and communications.
Our team in North America partners to unearth new insights into the region's critical challenges and works on the ground with local governments to support co-creation with residents, innovate for more effective and responsive governance, and build inclusive systems that prioritise the flourishing of people and the environment.
Our team in Europe works with partners across government, the public sector and civil society, to build the knowledge, skills and tools needed to bring about a transformation in how public services are delivered, so that everyone thrives.
How we’re funded and governed
The Centre for Public Impact receives an annual donation from Boston Consulting Group to fund our core operations and activities that align with our mission. We also partner with a range of other organisations working to reimagine government to supplement that funding, open new opportunities to explore our vision and help amplify what we are learning. Our total funding from all sources for 2019 was $5.2 million.
We are a Swiss-registered foundation (CHE-172.995.978) that is governed globally by an 11-member board of trustees who meet quarterly to advise on strategy and provide oversight of our management and finances. In North America, we operate as a 501(c)3 governed by a 6-member board of trustees, in Europe, we operate as a registered charity (UK 1193597) governed by a 4-member board of trustees, and in Australia we operate as an Approved Research Institute under section 76A of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1936 with a 3-member board of trustees.
Join the conversation
Are you exploring how government can be better?
If you’re looking for inspiration and examples of government innovation, or interested to learn how the current models of government are evolving to shape a new future, that embraces complexity, values relationships and prioritises learning, then we want to hear from you.
Get in touch to share your story.