Policy design is used to better understand how citizens experience services and functions in society, and to solve challenges in big collaborative projects. By working in policy labs and using design-thinking methods, change can be achieved in several areas. Part of the process involves influencing systems, policy instruments or laws to help the change succeed.
Understand citizens’ needs with policy design
Policy design is a way to approach challenges that involve collaborations between multiple stakeholders to find better policy initiatives and regulations. A user-centered work method is created by using design-thinking methods and insights into citizens’ experiences and expectations.
The work is exploratory and iterative. Testing new solutions and combining different skill sets leads to more successful policy development. This work approach results in a better, more nuanced understanding of citizens’ conditions while saving resources and time by continually testing, evaluating and improving different ideas. But above all: policy design is a way to be sure your efforts lead to the right results.
Use policy design to:
- Map systems and structures and create better partnerships
- Better understand how citizens experience social services
- Break down silo mentality and collaborate with different stakeholders to find better solutions
- Work iteratively and gradually on testing and improving policies
- Focus on citizens’ needs
Working with policy design means putting the needs of end users front and center when making decisions. Design thinking emphasizes the importance of involving citizens early on. The end user is engaged in the decision-making process, for example by testing several different ideas and prototypes. This kind of participation is based on empathy and co-creation and the result is a solution that gets better and better as work progresses.
Design on three levels
In policy design projects, we tend to work on three levels to solve a challenge: the detail, system and policy levels. The detail level might be a specific behavior or touchpoint. The system level is the context associated with that behavior or touchpoint. The policy level is the framework that sets the conditions for how the system works and connects.
Policy labs for testing new regulations
Policy labs consist of a group of people with different skill sets. Together, they invent, develop and test different methods to change regulations. The key here is to base work around citizen insights and to quickly develop testable prototypes. That lets us achieve policy changes that promote sustainable social development.
System design and Agenda 2030 partnership
In conjunction with the policy lab, we map the system surrounding the challenge we want to solve. This mapping process is based on the entire system and helps us see exactly where we need to work to have the greatest effect; it’s called system acupuncture. This kind of system design is intended to produce long-term effects. It creates a self-reinforcing loop that affects the entire system, and initiatives that can be scaled up.
Policy design is also an effective way to work with the global development goals and Agenda 2030. We use process management to support collaborations and partnerships, the facilitation of workshops, and to ensure well-defined, practical results.
Our expertise is to find out what people need and what drives them. From these valuable insights we innovate and design services that users easily understand and fall in love with.