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How France is institutionalising public involvement

Lab Notes - April edition

The April edition of Lab Notes brings together inspiring articles, reports, events and other content for public sector and social innovators around the world, including how France is embedding public involvement in local decision-making, the value in encouraging more experimental government, financial innovation for women's economic empowerment and more...

This month's key lab picks

1. Gov.news describes how France’s independent Commission Nationale du Débat Public is championing citizen ownership of a multi-billion euro public works project in Toulouse.

2. Read this Guardian interview and Social Innovation Community event blog to find out why Finland is the only country in Europe where homelessness has declined in recent years, and how Finland’s ‘Housing First’ principle is supporting this.

3. Unmasking the ‘mirage of inclusive digital development’? This blog and academic paper question the assumption of a causal relationship between digital connectivity and economic development in African countries.

4. What solutions, both homegrown and international, are emerging in response to the food shortages threatening 20 million people across Somalia, South Sudan, Nigeria and Yemen? Read more on Quartz.

5. Are there limits to applying Silicon Valley-style disruptive innovation to government? This Wired article explores this question in relation to the Trump administration.

6. Nicolás Rebolledo from Chile’s in-house government innovation lab Laboratorio de Gobierno is interviewed by Centre for Public Impact about how the lab is creating cross-sector collaboration to understand complexity and test new ideas for delivering public services.

7. Read five reflections on how policymakers can accelerate learning through more experimental government in a new Nesta blog.

8. By rewarding achievements and providing a clear path to excellence, the new What Works Cities Certification could be a powerful incentive for US cities to become more data driven. Read more about the criteria, how to apply, and the rationale for the programme.

9. Innovations for Poverty Action argues that there is still much to learn to about which specific financial products and services are best able to deliver women’s economic empowerment. Its new report offers a review of some of the evidence.

10. According to a new McKinsey article, blockchain promises to create ‘networked public services’, and more secure management and control over critical and personal data.

11. Sign up for a free event in London on 16 May, specifically designed for policymakers, funders and practitioners to share how to make the most of opportunities in digital social innovation across Europe.

12. The UNDP’s Ramya Gopalan and Haoliang Xu share with DIY their lessons, partnerships and solutions developed over a three-year innovation strategy for the Asia-Pacific region.


Sophie Reynolds

Sophie Reynolds

Sophie Reynolds

Former Senior Researcher - Public and Social Innovation

Sophie was a Senior Researcher in Nesta’s Policy and Research unit. She is now Director of Sophie Reynolds Research & Consultancy.

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Theo Bass

Theo Bass

Theo Bass

Senior Researcher, Government Innovation

Theo was a Senior Researcher in Nesta's Research, Analysis and Policy Team

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