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Ten innovations that could change the face of Africa’s justice sector, and more...

Lab Notes - October edition

In this month's issue of Lab Notes, the monthly digest for public sector innovators, #psilabs and i-teams, we look at some of the most promising innovations set to shake up Africa's justice sector, and more...

This month's key lab picks:

#1. Ten promising ideas emerging from African countries have entered this year’s Innovating Justice Challenge, an open challenge prize aimed at encouraging innovation in the justice sector. Read more here.

#2. From predicting pests to benchmarking best farming practices, open data is already increasing agricultural efficiency. But in this Guardian article, Sean Hargrave asks Can open data prevent a global food shortage?

#3. Since a major earthquake devastated Iran, Build Change has been harnessing the energies of construction workers, homeowners, engineers and government officials to build disaster-resistant houses and schools.

#4. The last Tech4Labs column, Scaling and growing your innovation lab’s project, looks at useful tech tools and tips to help scale and grow your public innovation lab project.

#5. Over 40 US federal agencies are leveraging the power of citizen science to help overcome key national challenges, and will be packaging their learnings into a federal toolkit. Find out more in Science of the People, by the People and for the People.

#6. The Mandarin reports that the South Australian government has experimented with 90-day projects to boost public sector innovation.

#7. This EdX blog looks at U-lab - a free online MOOC - being used to radically rethink how the government and communities are connecting in Scotland.

#8. Sophie Reynolds of Nesta writes two pieces on public innovation labs for Design for Europe: The Landscape of Labs and the The Challenges of Running a Lab.

#9. Deloitte GovLab’s new report, ‘Anticipate, Sense, and Respond: Connected government and the Internet of Things’, identifies different ways governments can use connected devices to transform service delivery.

#10. In Namibia: Local Innovation for Local Problems, Muhammad Hamid Zamad calls for locally-designed, sustainable solutions to tackle healthcare challenges in the region.

#11. In Experimenting, carefully: A critical note on ‘public innovation labs’ Dr Tuukka Toivonen of UCL’s Institute for Global Prosperity, reflects on the challenges of experimentation for public innovation labs.

#12. Discover how imaginative policy and community involvement transformed public schooling in New Orleans in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in the New York Post’s How Civic Innovation Helped New Orleans Roar Back.

#13. This Harvard Business Review article, Design for Action, and Winter Fedyl’s feature in Spark cover some key points when considering introducing design thinking in government.

Continue the discussion on Twitter using the hashtag #psilabs


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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