Policy Jam: Long-term care

Prototype building

Policy Jam

The Government of Slovenia has developed a new approach to preparing government services and public policies. Through specially designed workshops with a 360° approach to different stakeholders, these so-called ˝Policy Jams˝ aim to develop citizen-centred policy solutions. Based on systems theories and service design principles they open up the discussion space, while gearing participants toward finding viable innovative solutions.

Innovation Summary

Innovation Overview

The purpose of a Policy Jam is to move from macro topics to concrete challenges that Slovenia is facing. To achieve Sustainable Development Goals by 2030, governments will need to develop sustainable and future-fit solutions that will better address societal needs. Moreover, they will need to meet stakeholders' expectations while remaining viable in complex settings.

Policy Jam is a series of interactive workshops (clustered in a multiple-day event or organized over a longer period of time), where stakeholders:
- come and work on a pre-defined public policy issue,
- try to understand the key challenges,
- and seek possible solutions.

Policy Jam workshops use system approach and design thinking techniques as a method for addressing complex societal challenges and developing sustainable solutions for better services in a complex and multimodal environment.

So far, two such iterations were successfully carried out, with two very different policy areas:

1) The national system of long-term care, and (in cooperation with the Ministry of Health)

2) Future-fit economic diplomacy (in cooperation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs).

In each case, Government Office for Development played the role of initiator, coordinator, organizer and promoter of the event. As for the content of the jam events, we partnered with “internal clients” - ministry responsible for the policy issue at hand, realizing the objective of better interdepartmental cooperation (whole-of-government approach). Both policy areas are in line with the Slovenian Development Strategy 2030.

By creating a multi-stakeholder innovation platform, Policy jam tackles some of the most pressing issues in the Slovenian public domain:
- poor delivery due to ill-designed systems;
- a siloed approach in organizational behaviour;
- poor division of labour in policy delivery;
- a widening gap between citizens' expectations and the public administration’s ability to deliver quality services in an era of complexity;
- low trust levels between stakeholders.

The underlying goal of Policy Jam workshops is to develop better policies and solutions that will contribute to Slovenia’s implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Furthermore, they help to improve cooperation and trust among stakeholders through empathy and exchanging experience and bridging the gap between citizens' needs and service delivery.

Results of both events are now being used by each client in further steps toward implementation. In essence, the beneficiaries of the first two Policy Jam are divided between direct internal client – the responsible ministry, all the stakeholders involved as well as the broader society that will directly be affected by the implementation process.

The Ministry of Health has been developing a new legislative framework for systemic implementation of long-term care and Policy Jam served as a unique opportunity to harness different views and knowledge regarding long-term care from various stakeholders. 17 organizations and institutions that have an active role in providing a quality service of long-term care have actively participated in the event, varying from representatives of the Ministry of Health, retirement homes, centres for social work, pensioners’ associations, caregivers, medical staff, etc. The results of the first workshop that dealt with designing national long-term care are being used in the preparation of pilot environments in two Slovenian cities where our new long-term care system is currently being tested by the Ministry of Health.

The second version of Policy Jam event was done with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Slovenia. Instead of service design, this event had more to do with system design. The two-day event was meant to join all the stakeholders in one place in two different settings. The first part of the day was for all the systemic stakeholders – twelve organizations, including the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Economic Development and Technology Ministry of Infrastructure, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Food, and various chambers of commerce. The second part was done alongside different export-oriented companies, that are direct users of economic diplomacy services. The results of the second workshop that addressed the challenges of providing future-fit economic diplomacy are now a part of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs' internal reorganization process.

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Year: 2017
Level of government: National/Federal government


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