GovTech Lab Lithuania

The GovTech Lab is a public sector team focused on encouraging the creation and use of innovative solutions for the government. The GovTech Lab helps the public sector identify challenges that can be solved with emerging technologies, engages startups and SMEs, creating innovative solutions and accelerating startups in #GovTech and #TechForGood space.

Innovation Summary

Innovation Overview

Startups and SMEs are transforming major industries, ranging from healthcare to banking. But one sector is often overlooked: the government. GovTech – the use of emerging technologies to solve public sector challenges – is on the rise, unleashing the potential of startups and SMEs to support government innovation. Public and Accenture calculated the GovTech market to be US$400 billion worldwide, and in the UK alone, the GovTech market is predicted to grow from £6.6 billion in 2015 to £20 billion by 2025.

The GovTech Lab was created to foster the disruption of the public sector. The Lab was initiated as a partnership between the "Create Lithuania" programme and the Ministry of Economy and Innovation of the Republic of Lithuania. By the end of 2019, it has been institutionalised at the Agency for Science, Innovation and Technology. The goal of the GovTech Lab is to encourage both the use of GovTech in the public sector and the creation of GovTech solutions in the market, with a specific focus on startups and SMEs.

To achieve that, the Lab has three core activity areas: 1) running the GovTech Challenges Series; 2) incubating and accelerating GovTech startups; 3) organising workshops, events and conferences. The Challenge Series works as an innovation on the typical procurement process, to deal with the rapid pace of technological progress in the modern era. The series begins with a call for challenges: an open call for all public sector institutions in Lithuania to submit a problem that they have, which can be solved with new technology. The challenges are then selected based on their quality, relevance and commitment of the public institution that submitted it. The chosen public sector institutions then become the owners of their challenge, overseeing the success of solutions throughout the remainder of the series. Challenges are later made public, through a series of events and marketing campaigns in order to generate as wide a reach as possible. Once this is complete, a call for ideas is issued – an open call in which the GovTech Lab defines a period of time in which companies or people may submit the ideas on how to solve the challenges. The GovTech Lab oversees this process, ensuring that adequate information is provided and any consultation needed is given. The ideas are presented at the Pitch Day, where all stakeholders gather in order to hear pitches proposed for each challenge. The best pitches are then selected after consultation with a panel of judges – experts that understand what will have the biggest impact. The selected teams may proceed to the next phase of the Challenge Series – a process in which their ideas become prototypes and later products. The GovTech Lab oversees this and ensures that adequate support is provided to the teams. Some of the teams might be selected to participate at the GovTech incubator (see next paragraph). The Challenge Series has a few different models of working - both within and outside the public procurement framework.

Secondly, the lab runs its incubation programme for startups that are working on solutions for the public sector and social challenges. The incubator is currently at the design stage and will become fully operational by the end of 2020. The incubator will provide free expert consultations on business development, public procurement, product development, marketing and other topics. The incubator will assist startups with finding relevant clients in the public sector both in Lithuania and abroad.

Finally, the Lab works on spreading the knowledge about GovTech and building networks of innovators both within and outside the public sector. It has been organising "GovTech Forum", a series of workshops, to public sector officials about the potential application of emerging technology in government. Topics so far have ranged from encouraging a culture of innovation in the organization to exploring the intricacies of machine learning. GovTech Lab also runs the "Innovators' Club", which connects the network of the key innovation-related decision-makers from different public sector institutions to enable the transfer of knowledge across different government institutions and to facilitate cross-institutional innovative technology projects. The Lab’s “Digital Lithuania Meetup” series encourages all people from society to come and engage with government officials in person. Finally, held annually in Vilnius, the GovTech Baltic Leaders conference brings together the best and brightest minds in GovTech in the region, to share knowledge, discover new opportunities and celebrate the innovation that works for everyone and is created by everyone.

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Year: 2019
Level of government: National/Federal government


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