Developing open collaborative innovation

We used this site to develop an "open source bid" to the UK Cabinet Office for a £1.2 million innovation exchange - available here. We didn't win - but see it as our most successful failure of 2007. Here's the case study.

After the interview was over

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As Simon wrote earlier, Jane Berry, Ben Whitnall and I did our best at Cabinet Office yesterday in an interview for the Open Innovation Exchange proposal.

We came out feeling pretty buzzy, and since we were in Westminster, and my son Dan had his best video kit on hand, we thought we should do justice to the occasion with a proper interview. We took ourselves off to College Green, opposite the Houses of Parliament. It is more often used by national TV for interviews with Ministers, but hey, we are about leveling things out a bit.

As you'll see, we felt that we gave of our best, and on reflection wouldn't do anything differently in the bid or the interview.
My main feeling - and I think it was the same for others - was that this was a life-changing experience. Well, tender-writing, job-doing-change-experience anyway. Once you have the excitement of opening up, and getting ideas and commitment from others in return, the old ways don't seem too appealing.  read more »

Stories 1, 2 and 3

I've been asked put up all of the stories we used in the interview. They are already here but a bit hidden, so here are the links:

Story #1 - Innovation in Youth Services

Story #2 and #3 - Graft and Grow, Invest in Success



Just a quick note to say that we've been interviewed. A video chat done immediately afterwards should appear here shortly. What are my immediate feelings?  read more »

Stories please!

It has been suggested that we use stories, in our interview, to illustrate how the OIE would work in practice eg how people would first connect with the OIE, how they would interact with the OIE over time, how the OIE would support them in the 'innovation to action' process and so on.

I have had a go at such a story and posted it here. Are there any other story tellers out there?! We think we need three. If you have an idea for a story you can leave it as a comment to this entry or, if you are registered, use your blog to write the story yourself.

Story #1

Innovation in Youth Services

Sue was a youth worker and worked in the Children's Services Department of the local council. She is married to David, an IT sales executive.

In his mid teens, their son was expelled from school. At this point Sue and David experienced service delivery from a user's point of view for the first time. They had a difficult two years trying to engage with non-joined-up support services which were delivered in a way that suited the service deliverer more than the service user.

Sue and David thought they could do better and started to do research. They came across the Open Innovation Exchange on the web. They realised they were not alone in thinking that public services could be improved and they also realised that you could do it from 'outside' public bodies. But where to start?

The Open Innovation Exchange (OIE) Website aggregated information from all sorts of sources. You could also register and ask questions but they decided not to dive straight in. Instead, they noted that there was a local event supported by the OIE which they registered for.

At the event, the full extent of the support available became clearer. They registered on the OIE website and were able to ask questions of known experts and read the answers already provided to other registered users. As well as providing a brilliant 'just in time' source of expertise, the system enabled them to identify others with similar interests and peer to peeer exchanges also proved really helpful. They also learned of the unLtd programme and were successful in getting a £5,000 grant to release Sue from her day job for 3 months to develop her ideas.

. . . . six months later . . . .  read more »

Please help us prepare for the interview

As you may imagine, we are more than delighted to be shortlisted as one of four teams for interview, out of 21. We face that interview next Tuesday, June 12, and would really welcome your help. We want some tough questions.
Our interview team will be meeting tomorrow for rehearsals, when we'll try and work out what we want to say, and what we may be asked.
We wondered how best to do that. Do we keep our best ideas to ourselves? Nope. We got so far by doing things in public ... why stop now?
We made a start on some Q and A here. Please take a look, and add any comment, questions - or indeed answers. This is still co-creation.

We've been shortlisted!

The 21 bids have been read and 4 have been selected for interview and ours is one of them. Well done everyone! Here is the email from John Craig received today:  read more »

The 'out takes'

We were restricted in the number of pages we could submit by the tender rules and there are things we would have liked to have explained more fully, had we had the time and space.

The OTS did say that they would follow-up if they needed further explanation of things so I hope we have done enough that they feel follow-up is worthwhile.

In the meantime we will be loading the 'out takes' up here.

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