Delegates at the IPAA SA stream of the _southstart event heard from line-up of insightful speakers as they explored new insights regarding entrepreneurship, creativity and innovation in government organisations.
The event was officially opened by the Hon Steven Marshall MP with the IPAA SA delegates first hearing from speakers on the ways public sector institutions can ignite an entrepreneurial and creative spirit. Commissioner Erma Ranieri addressed the audience, outlining the aspirations of her office for assisting in developing a public sector that is outward looking, empowered and able to adapt. She was followed by keynote speaker Professor Rod Glover as he outlined the main findings of his ANZSOG report ‘Today’s Problems,Yesterday’s Toolkit’. He also explored the opportunities for public sector institutions to re-invent themselves to become more orientated towards innovation and problem-solving and to build entrepreneurial competencies.
Clare Mockler also addressed delegates, discussing the Adelaide City Council’s aspirations for innovative and responsive services and policies for the City of Adelaide and the capacity building required to achieve them. Following this Dr Matthew Butlin highlighted the opportunities and challenges for improving public sector productivity and its risk appetite, as well as the imperative that there is a culture of entrepreneurialism to imagine the innovations that lead to those improvements. To conclude the first session Jim Whalley, as the SA Government’s Chief Entrepreneur, shared his thoughts on what the public sector and the private sector entrepreneurial experience can teach each other, as well as how his office and the Advisory Board can assist with public sector balance accountability with entrepreneurialism.
During the second half of the event we explored the experiences of those helping to transition from current public sector norms to an environment where public entrepreneurs can thrive. Charles Landry first spoke to delegates on the theme of ‘Creative Bureaucracy’ across a variety of international jurisdictions, sharing the common experiences and emerging trends that are arising from this work. Doha Kahn, a year 12 student and activist then shared her first-hand experience on the subject, around the work and organisation of ‘School Strike 4 Climate’ movement. Following Ms Kahn, Craig Wilkins spoke to us from the perspective of the Conservation Council of SA, exploring the important role ‘social entrepreneurs’ have in promulgating and normalising the environmental policy agenda and opportunities for the public sector to appropriately engage with the aspirations of social movements and their entrepreneurs. In addition Kathryn Anderson outlined the imperative for both public sector and universities to building stronger ties in unlocking research knowleddge to inform public policy and reflect upon the role, skills and aptitudes required of public/social entrepreneurs in Universities and civil services to realise opportunities. Finally we were addressed by Greg Mackie OAM from the History Trust of SA where he drew upon current and previous roles with the Government of SA and his commercial (retail) and social entrepreneurial (Festival of Ideas) ventures,to reflect upon the importance of a vibrant public discourse in shaping the imagination, aspirations and behaviours of an effective and responsive public sector.
Each session was concluded with a panel style interview, where speakers were moderated by Prof Rod Glover and Charles Landry respectively, as they explored further insights around innovation, entrepreneurship and what it means for the SA public sector.