Presentation on theme: "1 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Introduction to SDD and SDD’s project methodology Note: the policy examples in this document are for illustrative."— Presentation transcript:
1 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Introduction to SDD and SDD’s project methodology Note: the policy examples in this document are for illustrative purposes only
2 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet The best policy advice is strategic Good policy is clear about the objectives and outcomes the policy is trying to achieve and the means by which those objectives and outcomes will be achieved. Formulating the best policy advice requires the taking of a strategic approach What do we mean by ‘Strategic approach’? A strategic approach has numerous characteristics, most notably: Long term thinking; Holistic analysis; Using a strong evidence base; and Analysing underlying problems Strategic policy projects intensive strategic focus on a particular policy problem, often with a dedicated team of policy officers from a range of multidisciplinary perspectives To assist in taking a strategic approach, strategic policy projects may be instigated
3 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Complex problems have: No definitive formulation (defining complex problems is a complex problem) No stopping rule Solutions that are better or worse (rather than true or false) No immediate test of a solution No enumerable (or an exhaustively describable) set of potential solutions Within them, symptoms of other problems High stakes - the planner has no right to be wrong (planners are liable for the consequences of their actions) Strategic policy projects often address complex public policy problems Complex problems have common characteristics 1 Source: 1) The characteristics of complex problems are not unique and there are many variants. These characteristics are drawn from the work of Rittel and Webber on ‘wicked problems’ – an early conceptualisation of this approach, see Rittel, Horst, and Melvin Webber; "Dilemmas in a General Theory of Planning," pp. 155–169, Policy Sciences, Vol. 4, Elsevier Scientific Publishing Company, Inc., Amsterdam, 1973. Examples of complex problems: Water reform COAG architecture Schools reform Micro-economic reform Closing the gap Congestion in cities Behavioural change to drive energy efficiency Health and hospitals Federalism Jobs and the economy of the future Local government reform Cyber-crime We rarely get the chance to engage in policy design from scratch (e.g. design a new tax system from the ground up) More often we are asked to look at an area with a range of policies, programs, incentives and disincentives at play and ask the questions : Where Australia could go from here? How could we improve upon our current situation? What are some steps we could take to move forward? Doing this well requires people to combine both a sense of realism with innovative thinking Policy formulation does not start with a clean slate
4 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Longer-term horizons Holistic perspective Underlying problems Innovative and creative solutions Strong evidence base Shape the future debate Inclusively engage stakeholders Consideration of implementation Compellingly communicated Multi- disciplinary perspective Thinking beyond the next incremental decision Consider how government may position the nation for the future through actions today Thinking beyond any government silos Consideration of issues from whole of government/society perspectives Going beyond treating the symptoms to understand what is truly driving a problem and in turn how it can be addressed. Taking the time to ensure that the right question is being answered Consider and take on board ideas that may seem radical Transformational change is considered New approaches that can be used or solutions that can be borrowed from other domains Applying the most robust analysis to the best available evidence, in order to develop informed answers to the questions posed Create a space for new debates and new discussions to take place Ensure a range of viewpoints are understood and accounted for. This should lead not only to more informed policy advice, but also more innovative and creative solutions Plan to manage and mitigate implementation risks. Consider how best to implement change through the whole delivery system, connecting front-line service delivery to cabinet room policy decision making Persuasive Communicated in a simple and logical fashion which is compelling to the reader Sound rationale and use of narrative to aide communication involves ‘inter-systems’ thinking – thinking beyond any particular portfolio or disciplinary perspective Solving these complex public policy problems requires a strategic approach These represent some of the key elements associated with taking a strategic approach to policy Not all elements will be relevant to any given policy issue Given time and resourcing constraints, it is simply not possible to always consider all policy issues using an intensive strategic approach Use of the strategic approach should be based on the complexity of the problem, resource and time constraints Most of the projects SDD undertakes are complex and require a strategic approach to be taken
5 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet To complete strategic policy projects rigorously to tight deadlines, our approach has five broad components Projects are set up for success with concrete deliverables Regular meeting rhythm and process STAIR is an approach to problem solving and policy development To ensure projects with tight deadlines are delivered on time To make sure our recommendations and ideas are understood and acted upon To make sure we are asking the right question, and solving the right problem To ensure we get input from those that matter, and get to the right answer for all concerned ‘Nailing the question’ is a key feature of SDD’s distinctiveness Complex strategic policy projects require a significant amount of time spent just getting the question right Narrative and storytelling used to communicate efficiently and effectively Communication a focus right from day one, never just at the end of a project Critical to our approach is bringing people along the journey and getting input from the start Complex and wide-ranging policy projects require input from a broad range of people STAIR employs private-sector techniques adjusted for a complex policy environment to State, Test, Analyse, Iterate and Resolve The way each of these components is used varies across different projects and SDD’s approach is evolving and is not ‘set in stone’.
6 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Strategic project teams need to build a culture of trust, collaboration and innovation Trust People should feel comfortable to speak up and put their ideas on the table This happens when: Team members are encouraged to put their views forward and they are discussed respectfully The confidentiality of sensitive information and viewpoints is maintained A sense of shared ‘team ownership’ for the project and its outcomes is cultivated Collaboration Innovation Collaboration is vital both within the team and with external stakeholders This happens when: Project management harnesses team member’s different skill sets and experiences effectively A common sense of the policy narrative for the project is developed while capitalising on the different perspectives of team members Ongoing SDD staff are paired up effectively with secondees and interns Expectations for the project are clearly outlined to team members and external stakeholders Left-field or ‘out-of-the-square thinking should be encouraged This happens when: Project teams ask the question: ‘what is the piece of really interesting work or analysis we could do here?’ There is time to read widely and test whether policy solutions can be borrowed from other domains People take a ‘citizen-centred’ approach and think about what the problems are for people on the ground and how any proposed solutions would impact on them
7 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet The best way to understand SDD’s project methodology is to apply it using a case study scenario The Prime Minister recently attended a dinner where an academic gave a speech on women’s participation in Australia, noting that Australia has slipped to number 50 on the 2009 World Economic Forum Gender Global Index of women’s labour market participation. The Secretary has asked for a strategic policy project to consider ways in which the workforce participation rate of women in Australia could be increased. The Secretary has stressed that he would like the project to consider all the issues and drivers associated with the problem, rather than focusing purely on economic issues. This will be a twelve week project for SDD involving five staff (three ongoing and two secondees). Commissioning Brief: Hypothetical example – Women’s workforce participation project Over the course of the day your group will complete five activities that echo the first key steps of a typical SDD project: 1.An information gathering activity where you will identify the precise nature of the problem and its context, and familiarise yourself with current thinking; 2.A project scoping activity where you will develop an ‘issues tree’ to systematically break the problem down into its component issues and use this analysis to generate a project plan; 3.A statement generation activity where you will have a ‘first crack at the answer’, tease-out your core assumptions and identify the most effective analytical methods to test these assumptions; 4.A stakeholder mapping activity where you will identify the individuals/groups most affected by your project and consider how best to identify, balance and respond to, their competing needs and interests; and 5.A ‘ghost deck’ activity where you will use narrative techniques to ‘storyboard’ your project’s aims, assumptions and analyses and present your argument to your project sponsor.
8 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Focus on scoping STAIR approach to problem solving and policy development Inclusively engaging stakeholders Compellingly communicated Dedicated project management
9 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Project scoping is our opportunity to really nail the question – and identify the different approaches we can bring We are in the privileged position to be able to challenge the question we are being asked to solve – we should use this privilege effectively in the scoping stage. Then we can deliver a solution to the real problem What is the problem? What is the real goal or outcome that we want to achieve? And therefore, what is the real question we are being asked? What has been tried in the past? Is there a better question to be asked? What are the constraints? And which of these constraints are truly binding? What is in and out of scope? Complex problems cross multiple dimensions – to make the project tractable we need to agree on what is out of scope. Some things may be out of scope for political or practical reasons Clarifying scope is important in managing stakeholder expectations. Can the problem be solved? Sometimes the combination of constraints and scope mean that we cannot make a meaningful contribution – we should be honest and say that We can still maximise our contribution by providing clarity on the issue and identifying the barriers to solving the problem What is the interesting piece of work we can do? In most projects we need to do more than review existing literature or data. What is the different approach that we can take? What is the distinctive piece of analysis or modeling that will illustrate an aspect of the problem in a different way – leading to a distinct solution?
10 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet The first step is to get a preliminary understanding of the problem Read background information Search for relevant information Discuss with colleagues & team ‘Get smart’ on the topic Ask questions! PM&C Library
11 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Case study exercise: Information Gathering Exercise 1—Information gathering Task: Read the available background information and discuss to develop a preliminary understanding of the issue and context Tips: Read all the materials provided Think through the questions provided Always keep in mind, ‘how big is this issue’ and ‘what am I really trying to address here?’ Discuss within your team, this brings out opinions and different ways of looking at information very quickly Time: This should take about 45 minutes, read through the material yourself and then discuss for 30 minutes
12 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Once familiar with the problem and its context, we break it down into its component parts to structure our thinking How can the government use non-traditional behavioural change tools to influence citizens to reduce GHGs when using energy? Which behaviours are currently creating household GHGs? What equipment/appliances are the main sources of GHGs? Which citizens are creating GHGs? (audience) What changes can citizens make to produce less GHGs? Can citizens move to cleaner sources of energy? Can citizens stop using energy? Can citizens remove GHGs from the atmosphere? Can they buy carbon offsets? Can they contribute to others buying carbon offsets? Can they buy charcoal to remove carbon? Can they remove carbon from other ways? Can citizens use energy more efficiently? Can we change some citizen behaviour to stop energy use? Can we eliminate an appliance? Can we change some citizen behaviour to use less? Can we switch to appliances/equipment that is more efficient? Can we move citizens to all clean energy? Can we move some citizens in part to cleaner energy? What new behavioural change levers could be used to influence citizens to reduce GHG? Where are the main sources of GHGs omitted (geography)? How are citizen GHG emissions distributed throughout the year? Why are citizens indulging in GHG behaviour when alternatives exist? Can we use financial tools? Can we use motivational tools? Can we use norm tools? Can we use effort tools? What new proposals can we conceive (including drawn from non-energy efficiency initiatives)? What has been done (or is planned ) in Australia to reduce household GHG emissions? What has been done internationally to reduce citizen’s GHG? Can we optimise the running of the appliance/ equipment? Travel (34%) Home appliances (59%) Other uses (7%) Segment 1 Segment 2 Segment 3 Other segments Who was targeted? What tools was used? How was it measured? How effective was it? Who was targeted? What tools was used? How was it measured? How effective was it? Who will be targeted? Others? Issue trees can be used for identifying and/or clarifying the problem For illustrative purposes only
13 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Capturing all the relevant information on a single scoping slide supports a focused discussion with the sponsor or client Overall question/problemContext Probably the hardest part of the project What precisely is the problem – which is often very different to the problem that we have been presented with What precisely is the question that our project will seek to answer Context is important as it illustrates that we have sufficient understanding of the issues to have a credible crack at the problem It also allows us to check that we have correctly defined and understood the ‘universe’ in which the problem is situated ScopeStakeholder Engagement There are three key things in defining our scope: What issues are we going to focus on What issues are we not going to focus on (possibly more important) What is the ‘cool’ piece of analysis we are going to do that will separate our work from other work in the area The focus of this section is on identifying the key stakeholders that we need to engage A more detailed stakeholder engagement plan needs to be developed once the scope has been agreed Governance and team resourcesEnd products This is the “bottom line” of the scope for the sponsor and senior management. It tells them the resource cost, and the cost in their time to make the project a success. Don’t ‘cost pad’, but don’t fall into the trap of underestimating the true cost of the work A clear focus on the end products is critical in framing all the work - it needs to identify the product and the audience Cabinet Submission; Briefing for the PM Having a clear scoping document and then getting it agreed with the project sponsor and steering group is critical in ensuring that expectations are met on all sides
14 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Case study exercise: Project Scoping Exercise 2—Project scoping Task: Break the problem down into manageable components by building an issue tree Tips: Use the MECE principle, trying to ensure that the branches of the tree are Mutually Exclusive and Collectively Exhaustive, so that the solution space is covered efficiently There’s no single correct answer, there are many ways to break up any problem Can you break it down by cohort, by barrier, by action, or some other categorisation? Time: This should take about 60 minutes, though in a normal project it might be revised many times over!
15 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Focus on scoping STAIR approach to problem solving and policy development Inclusively engaging stakeholders Compellingly communicated Dedicated project management
16 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Our STAIR methodology employs private-sector techniques adjusted for our complex policy environment State......what you think is the root cause of/ solution to, the problem Test......your statement with key stakeholders Analyse......the assumptions that underlie your statement by gathering evidence Iterate......to progressively refine your statement to reflect new knowledge Resolve......the project by agreeing recommendations & identifying next steps This is not a simple linear process. You will need to step up and down to refine your thinking. You may find that you revisit the statement generation step as you gather more evidence and your thinking evolves – this is not evidence that your project is failing, to the contrary, it is a fundamental quality of the STAIR model.
17 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet In the STAIR approach we quickly generate an initial answer as a way of identifying key elements and then iteratively improve on that answer Strengths of the STAIR approach Allows the team to come to a position quickly and to communicate an answer throughout the project Coming to a position early on means it is constantly tested – e.g. against beliefs, existing positions, data, stakeholders – which helps strengthen the veracity of the position Well targeted to the problem under consideration More flexible to changing commissioning environment (which often occurs in high stakes projects) Close and constant liaison with stakeholders means they are part of developing the solution, rather than merely being consumers of the end product Close liaison with stakeholders allows a more immediate assessment of which constraints are actually binding The STAIR approach involves making the best assessment of the answer very early, and then undertaking the necessary analysis to see if the answer is supported The initial answer statement is heavily informed by early consultation with senior stakeholders and subject matter experts. This approach brings the key elements to the surface quickly. The process is iterative – the answer statement guides the analysis, but then the analysis usually leads to an amendment of the answer statement. Supporters of this kind of approach argue that this iterative approach closes on the right answer much more rapidly than a more comprehensive approach By focusing on the statement, analysis is prioritised, so time is not wasted researching areas well away from the actual solution, nor is time wasted on ‘interesting’ areas of analysis that are not central to the real problem What is the STAIR approach?. The key to the STAIR approach is that it surfaces rapidly the key issues and elements of the problem, by focusing stakeholders attention on whether they agree or disagree with your answer statement
18 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet While the STAIR approach has many benefits, we must account for the pitfalls and counter them wherever possible Deep and broad consultations with a diverse range of stakeholders is critical in developing the issues tree and the initial answer statement. The statement needs to be tested with project sponsors and subject matter experts before detailed analysis begins. Management practices need to support ‘left field thinking’ – particularly at the scoping stage. Alternative views can also be sought through broad consultations – not just talking to the usual experts Senior stakeholders and team members need to be familiar with the STAIR approach and the importance of iteration when they are using it – although even the strongest warnings to senior stakeholders will not fully mitigate this risk Avoiding demands for “policy-based evidence” is a challenge for all policymakers. The STAIR approach just makes this risk more explicit Sponsors and steering/reference group members need to be familiarised with the strengths and weaknesses of the STAIR approach – including that the first ‘go’ at the answer is to surface the key issues as much as to get it right How to manage these risks Does not provide a comprehensive cost-benefit analysis of all the options – which makes the approach inherently more risky. If there are multiple possible solutions we are not guaranteed of finding the best solution Choosing the initial (and often obvious) solution may preclude us from exploring the genuinely innovative solutions The team may become overly attached to the initial statement, which runs the risk of not fully interrogating all possible answers Senior stakeholders may become overly attached to the initial solution – particularly if it is compellingly communicated and they announce it publicly The approach runs the risk of generating “policy-based evidence” to support the initial disposition of project sponsors or key clients The STAIR approach requires the team to take risks – to have a go at the answer with only limited knowledge. To be successful there needs to be a trusting relationship between the team, the project sponsor and the steering/reference group Risks of a STAIR approach The STAIR approach is not without risks, but if these are well mitigated it provides a highly effective way to tackle complex problems against tight deadlines
19 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet We develop a statement tree to rapidly develop a testable answer that brings out the key elements of the problem Government should automate service delivery Statement of the answer: Statement of the problem Satisfaction with service delivery is declining ‘Facts’ to test answer statement: Citizens prefer government services to be automated We can identify services that should be automated The benefits for government outweigh the costs This is feasible in the current legislative framework Sub elements: Source: BCG experience There’s nothing wrong with being wrong! The point of the answer statement is to test it and refine it, not get it right the first go The statement and ‘facts’ (its underlying assumptions) need to be clear and testable Be prepared to share you statement with as many people as possible, and get their input on what needs to change Have your best go at getting it right, drawing on as much expertise as you can, but don’t anchor yourself to it; your first statement will change! Tips for statement tree
20 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Answer statementSub-IssueAnalysisOutputResp/Due Date It is feasible to reduce the number of factories Some factories have excess capacity Determine capabilities on an ‘equivalent unit’ basis Capacity (Kg 13mm Equiv) Demand is not rising at a significant rate to require new factories Determine demand on an ‘equivalent unit’ basis Demand (Proj) Closing a factory saves more money that the cost of shutting down From previous analysis Determine which factory provides greatest savings Savings From Branch Closure (Branch A) There are no significant risks to shutting down factories Determine risk of having fewer than three locations Capacity can be increased in remaining factories Ability to shift machinery The STAIR approach supports good work planning and output management UlvMMSDTotal 91929394 Kg Reduction in FC VC Savings In Other Plant Other Trans- port etc Total Sav- ings How you are going to find out? What will you produce? Who will do it by when? What you need to prove?
21 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet 123 Potential sources include: Domestic Departments and agencies (e.g. Treasury, the Productivity Commission) Research organisations (e.g. ABS, CSIRO) Longitudinal data sets (e.g. HILDA) International OECD World Bank UN Organisations We can build on existing data by: Undertaking new modelling Scrutinising and then amending the assumptions underpinning data Building ‘driver trees’ and using the data to solve our specific questions Testing other people’s research findings with stakeholders Potential methods include: Surveys Focus groups Workshops Case studies Interviews Discourse/textual analysis We can test our statements using three broad sources of data We should consider innovative ways to approach analyses and draw on both quantitative and qualitative methodologies We can draw upon existing analyses We can perform our own analyses using existing data We can generate / commission our own data
22 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet When testing statements it also helps to consider them from different perspectives These perspectives are not mutually exclusive and overlap Top- down (e.g. institutional perspective) Bottom-up (e.g. individual citizen’s perspective) Multi-disciplinary perspectives (e.g. economic, administrative anthropological and legal) Multi-cohort perspectives (e.g. majority/minority groups) 1 2 3
23 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Statements can be tested using both top-down and bottom-up perspectives 1 From a bottom up perspective, the policy maker might consider: What impact might an increase in the GST have on Joanne, a working mum from Wollongong? Would an increase in the GST create further administrative burden for a particular small business operating in the retail sector? How would the increase in GST be explained to this particular small business? Bottom up – focus on individuals Brings an individual’s perspective to policy problems and solutions It assesses the costs and benefits of policy options for particular individuals Focuses on local level circumstances and encourages thinking about what might be achieved on the ground for a particular individual or group of individuals Top down – focus on systems Brings a system-wide perspective to policy problems and solutions It assess the costs and benefits of policy options in aggregate Focuses on international, national and state/territory actors Hypothetical Statement: The GST needs to be increased From a top down perspective, the policy maker might consider: How might this influence total government revenue? What might be the administrative cost of the change? How might this influence Commonwealth and State financial relations? How might business groups (e.g. the Business Council of Australia) react?
24 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Statements can be tested using multi-disciplinary perspectives – applying different problem-solving frames to a single issue 2 Policy Problem Institutional Map institutions and their functions Explore connections and disconnections between institutions Administrative Map the processes that exist around a problem Consider issues of system capability Legal Consider the rules, regulations and sanctions that may apply to a problem Explore whether there are too many rules or not enough Anthropological Examine the social and cultural conditions that underpin a problem Seek to understand the history of a group of people Economic Explore the operation of markets and incentives Identify market failures and consider interventions and their consequences Hypothetical Statement: There is a lack of financial services in remote Indigenous communities Institutional Which financial institutions have a presence in remote communities and what services are they providing? Legal Are there any legal obligations on financial institutions to provide services in remote locations? Are appropriate regulatory and law enforcement arrangements in place to prevent fraud associated with financial products? Anthropological How do particular remote Indigenous communities currently save and trade money? How have they saved and traded resources in the past? Administrative What processes do people undertake to access, save and spend Centrelink payments? Economic What is the market failure leading to a lack of financial services in communities? What incentives might lead to the provision and use of these services? Statements that are proved valid from a number of disciplinary perspectives are more likely to be correct and hold significant weight in a policy development process
25 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Statements can be tested using a multi-cohort perspective, exploring the views of majority and minority groups 3 Policy Problem Majority Group Majority Perspective A majority perspective would ask whether the proposed policy provides an overall benefit to the community. ‘The greatest good for the greatest number’ Minority Perspective A minority group perspective would ask what impact the policy has on groups in the community, and whether particular groups are advantaged or disadvantaged more than others by the policy. Age group Ethnic group Income bracket Family type Geographic group Hypothetical Statement: We should create more jobs in service industries to reduce unemployment From a majority group perspective, the policy maker might consider: Are the majority of Australians now employed in service industries? Will increasing employment in service industries have the maximum flow-on effect for GDP? Will inflation increase? When considering various minority groups the policy maker might consider: Will this measure assist older Australians? Will this largely affect employment figures in lower income brackets? Are there more casual / part-time workers in service industries? Will this measure work to improve unemployment rates in the bush?
26 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Iteration is an important component of our approach—we will revise our answer many times before the final version First answer statementFirst draft of your deckSuccessive revisionsFinal version SDD experience tells us there will be MANY iterations This is normal – if the solution to the problem was known, we wouldn’t be working in this space! Structure Answer Situation Complication Resolution
27 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Case study exercise: Statement Generation Exercise 3—Statement generation Task: Have a first attempt at the answer by converting the issue tree into a statement tree. Then decide what analysis might be necessary to prove each statement correct or incorrect Tips: Turn your issue tree from questions into statements Use the first three steps of the STAIR method Be creative about the way you can prove each statement correct or incorrect—this is the time to decide what the real work you will do is, and how you will do it There are many different ways to prove your point, think of qualitative and quantitative methods Time: This is the most important part of problem solving, it should take about 45 minutes today, but may take a week in a normal project State... Test... Analyse... Iterate... Resolve...
28 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Focus on scoping STAIR approach to problem solving and policy development Inclusively engaging stakeholders Compellingly communicated Dedicated project management
29 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Stakeholders are often thought to be the senior people in key decision-making roles, but in reality they are a subset of our stakeholders A stakeholder is anyone who has an interest in, has influence on, or is impacted by the outcomes of a decision or action Stakeholder management can be thought of as the planning and execution of how we engage with stakeholders Good stakeholder management means we engage effectively with people with an interest in, or an influence on, our project Stakeholder management links to and supports other parts of the SDD methodology: STAIR approach – helps form and test the answer Evidence-based approach – helps gather evidence and ensure representativeness Systems thinking – helps manage complexity
30 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet The complexity of the issues, the tight deadlines and our iterative approach put a higher premium on good stakeholder engagement Good stakeholder management is important for good policy Identifying and working closely with content experts delivers a higher quality product Working with the key decision- makers to build their support is critical to getting any proposals accepted Engaging with opponents mean that their concerns can either be addressed or rebutted BUT Our issues are often complex So we need to engage more deeply We work to tight deadlines So we need to engage more frequently We take an iterative approach So our answers can change significantly and rapidly SO We need to place a higher premium on good stakeholder management and ensure that we do it in a systematic and effective way We also need to do it in the right way to ensure that we build the relationship of trust that underpins the use of a STAIR approach
31 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Who are our stakeholders and why do we engage with them? Who stakeholders are may range from project sponsor to end users The purposes of engagement will vary The nature of the engagement will depend on how the project is set up Goals Audience Timeframe Subject 1.Increase the quality of inputs (evidence) for our work Need varying perspectives on complex problems to get a comprehensive understanding of issues (and solutions) 2.Communication and selling of ideas Demonstrate breadth of input (inclusiveness) Get people onside Get commitment of resources Achieve consensus where we can Where we can’t get consensus, clearly identify the points of difference – and propose options Project sponsor Within PM&C Within the Commonwealth States and Territories Implementers, workforce Interest groups, end users Any others affected by a decision
32 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet There are a range of tools that we use It is important to note there is no set way, or mandated tools to do stakeholder management as each project will have a unique set of stakeholders Decision trees Understand the consequences of decisions Stakeholder framework Understand where tradeoffs can be made Stakeholder heat map Understand support and challenges Venn diagram Understand how interests overlap Network map Understand connections and nodes of influence Stakeholder engagement ladder Decide on the appropriate level of engagement Degree of buy in - Importance of stakeholders Attention needed – manage risk Limit input – filter unneeded information Champions – actively involve Supporters – keep engaged
33 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Case study exercise: Stakeholder Mapping (Group exercise) Exercise 4—Stakeholder mapping Task: Identify important stakeholders for the project and how you will engage them using the ladder model Tips: Think of this broadly, not just in terms of the process of doing the project, but also in terms of content—who will be impacted by your recommendations, which citizens does the project affect List both those that will be in favour as well as those you will have to work hard to convince Discuss how you will engage each group of stakeholders Time: 30 minute group discussion
34 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Focus on scoping STAIR approach to problem solving and policy development Inclusively engaging stakeholders Compellingly communicated Dedicated project management
35 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Storytelling is a critical element to SDD’s methodology Why we tell stories How we tell stories Good stories should... However, evidence must always drive the story Increasingly, advice must look to persuade as well as inform Stories are relatable and compelling Presenting evidence in a story makes complex things easier to understand and more memorable There is an appropriate blend of structure and flow, evidence and anecdote Involves arguing why the recommended approach is more compelling than alternative recommendations Emphasises what is new, different and innovative in our recommendations – because this is ultimately more interesting than the status quo and will stay with the reader Situates the decision maker within the story Provide an impetus to their action Assist the decision maker visualise new possibilities and anticipate future reform directions Open up vision and imagination There is a fine balance between evidence dictating story and story dictating evidence – and it is imperative this is managed to ensure evidence always informs the story being told And we don’t omit critical information to support a more compelling story
36 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Good analysis is not enough – it needs to be communicated compellingly to stand up against well communicated poor analysis In a contestable environment, policy advice has to be persuasive. Good policy advice is compelling. It is embraced by Ministers, even if not immediately, and is impervious to the assaults of other players in the game, including those motivated by vested interests. Public policy advisers who appreciate this point pay as much attention to the construction and presentation of an argument as they do the quality of the analytical content and the soundness of its strategic perspective. In a contestable environment, policy advice has to be persuasive. Good policy advice is compelling. It is embraced by Ministers, even if not immediately, and is impervious to the assaults of other players in the game, including those motivated by vested interests. Public policy advisers who appreciate this point pay as much attention to the construction and presentation of an argument as they do the quality of the analytical content and the soundness of its strategic perspective. Ken Henry Secretary of the Treasury, 2007
37 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Though we use different formats, the approach to communication must always be clear and compelling Slide decksPublic policy papersSpeeches Cabinet submissionsBriefs to PMEmails SOME TIPS Set out your argument in one line: what is the one idea you want people to take from your work? Write for an intelligent outsider. Write as if you’re talking to someone at a dinner party. Stories stick: are there any stories that can enliven your work?
38 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Good writing is good story-telling: a template for our work This template can be modified or embellished but it is the basic structure of many (perhaps most) stories, and of our policy work We are here: We want to go there: Why do we want to go there? How do we get there? What difficulties lie along the way? How will we know when we have got there? The Secretary: what will success look like?
39 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Two stories: very different and yet the same a) Health policy b) Lord of the Rings We are here: a)Our health system is under pressure and faces mounting challenges b)Sauron wants his Ring of Power but Frodo has it We want to go there: a)We need to build a health system for the 21 st century b)Frodo must throw the Ring into Mount Doom Why do we want to go there? a)Because a strong health system is essential to a strong, fair society b)Because it is good to save the world from evil How do we get there? a)By an alliance with states, a stronger Commonwealth role, better hospitals, and a good map b)By an alliance with elves, dwarves and wizards, and a good map Difficulties along the way? a)Potential cost blowouts, arguments with the states, a shrinking budget b)Black Riders, orcs, and a giant spider – all require rigorous policy responses How will we know? a)Patients get excellent service at an acceptable cost; society is healthy b)The Ring destroyed, Middle Earth saved
40 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Storyboarding the titles and then preparing a simple ghost deck lets you check whether you have a good story
41 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Exercise 4—Ghost deck Task: Put together a ghost deck to describe your early narrative, and to give an outline of what analysis you will do throughout the project Tips: This is not a final answer, it is a first attempt at how you will describe the problem and the solution There are different methods to writing a story, discuss a number of them, for example ‘situation, complication, resolution’ or ‘where are we, where to we want to be, how do we get there’ Time: 1 hour, but leave some time to discuss how you will present it to your project sponsor and other stakeholders to get their early input Case study exercise: Ghost Deck
42 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Focus on scoping STAIR approach to problem solving and policy development Inclusively engaging stakeholders Compellingly communicated Dedicated project management
43 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Good project management is critical if we are going to find solutions to complex problems in tight timeframes Our projects are often extremely complex We work in multi-disciplinary teams with people from diverse backgrounds including other departments, other divisions and the private sector We work to tight deadlines, our projects require rapid responses We need input from a wide range of experts to get to the right answer We need to engage a large number of stakeholders along the way to ensure agreement Each project is unique—there is no set formula for getting to the right answer There are a number of factors that mean our projects require dedicated project management There is always more work that could be done on a difficult problem. Good project management ensures that we consciously choose what level of resourcing to invest – and that we get the best answer we can with that investment
44 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Project planning requires thinking through all the interactions and deliverables ahead of time Project planning Good project planning is more than just a Gantt chart (pictured) The chart is a tool to help sequence and arrange all of the activities and considerations for a project Good project planning requires Consideration of resourcing Booking meetings in calendars Considering of the project ‘rhythm’—can it be achieved on time, how hard will the team be working Agreeing on interim deliverables and dates Interim products and interim deadlines play a critical role in our project approach – we use them to drive our output and drive our stakeholder engagement. We know we will have to iterate, so let’s plan for it