Transcript of video: Innovation Lab Overview (Urvashi)
The goalsetting of this Lab was to address some of the service delivery challenges. As you know this is a service delivery department, and we just want to come up with more innovative ways of addressing issues that are quite prominent in our service delivery. So as a result, for example, to deliver services it requires integration across policy, program, evaluation, research and the front-line workers. And one of the key mandates of the Lab is to break down these silos and create a policy transmission grid that’s tight and short.
So the Lab itself was launched as a pilot because it is a little risky initiative at the time it was launched. It was seen as something that needed to establish pathways, so we were blessed with a way nice physical space which was the vision of our Deputy Minister who had permitted the creation of the space. And the space is what you see around, it allows for having a safe space where people can have dialogue and breakdown the hierarchy that exists within the government institution. And that permits a free flow of ideas and thinking outside the box. And the Lab has technology that allows us to connect to regions. We have furniture that really breaks down hierarchical barriers and it’s just a pleasant space to have these discussions.
As I said the Lab was launched as a pilot so the biggest accomplishment is that we’re still around. So we have successfully navigated our first year in the government organization. We have actually delivered on our first big project, which is using design thinking methods to bring outside perspectives and cocreating with Canadians. So the biggest barrier that we had was how do we go about integrating Canadian views, or citizen views into how we design and deliver services for them. So we have actually established a pathway and we were successful. So we conducted interviews with seniors in our first year and now we are ready to interview other groups as needed for the project. Besides that the Lab was very successful in breaking down silos. Within the department we ran almost 40 collaborative sessions and it really demonstrated that if you give people a chance to scope out the issues and think through what the issue is before jumping to solutions, it really works.