What tools can the government use to effect & drive change?

2 min readMay 21, 2024

We hosted a session with Policy Lab with over 40 people. The session was called “What tools can the government use to effect and drive change?” Before the session, I blogged about the work we and others have been doing on this.

We had an excellent presentation by Vasant Chari from Policy Lab on the Government as a System toolkit.

We then had thought-provoking breakouts on how it could tackle three policy areas, and we picked food, net zero, and race inequality. You can see what everyone contributed to starting the ball rolling on these areas on the Trello board.

Policy Lab

What came out of the session was:

  • For some policy areas, people identified more “influencing” actions than “delivery.” Is this because they require “softer” powers or because delivery holds you more accountable?
  • How would you work with partners on what roles we can collectively use to tackle an issue, including their powers (e.g., pension funds, advertising, employees, etc.)?
  • How would you work with the public to get them to think about what roles they can play in tackling an issue?
  • Which of these are principles (i.e. collaboration) rather than roles?
  • How can we use this toolkit to challenge the policy biases or reflexes that public services and, indeed, any organisation have (i.e., the solution to everything used to be a one-stop-shop, a campaign, and a strategy; now it’s a community connector, a nudge, and a sprint!)?

Take a look at the toolkit on the board and contribute!




Head of Policy Design, Scrutiny & Partnerships @newhamlondon #localgov Co-founder of #systemschange & #servicedesign progs. inspired by @cescaalbanese