CAPAM awards innovation in the private sector

DPI, GUYANA, Thursday, October 25, 2018

Minister of State, Joseph Harmon, said the presentation of International Innovations Awards (IIA) is a fitting conclusion to the 12th Biennial conference of the Commonwealth Association for Public Administration and Management (CAPAM).

CAPAM 2018 concluded, with a banquet and IIA ceremony at the Marriott Hotel, Kingston, Georgetown, Wednesday evening. Minister Harmon commended CAPAM for celebrating innovation which explores new frontiers in the pursuit of public administration and management.

“I wish to commend the International Innovations Awards ceremony that seeks to promote the spirit of innovation of the public service by recognising organisations that have made significant contributions to improving governance and service in the public sector,” Minister Harmon said.

This is the first time the conference was held in Guyana. Minister Harmon said Guyana agreed to host the conference based on its deep commitment to the Commonwealth’s programmes and activities.

 “It is our hope that we have been a good and gracious host, that we have properly facilitated the work and success of the conference and that we have contributed to CAPAM’s objective to improve public administration and management,” Minister Harmon said.    

CAPAM was held from October 22-24 at the Guyana Marriott under the theme “Transforming the Public Sector for Climate Governance”.

Margaret Saner, former Chair of the United Nations Committee of Experts on Public Administration (CEPA) and Chair of the IIA Assessment Panel introduced the Awards, noting that, “many of the finalists’ innovations speak to the resilience, determination and leadership of those involved, and often understate the challenges and obstacles faced. These people have demonstrated vision, ingenuity and sensitivity to citizens and colleagues’ needs.” She continued, saying that “some innovations were strongly community-based, while others focused on equipping the public service to better serve citizens or to enhance economic or social potential. They exemplify what is best about the public service and show what is possible even in the face of long-standing, deep-rooted problems.”

The winners of the IIA are as follows:

Category: Innovation Incubation

Innovation that represents early thinking and promotes unproven innovative ideas that have not yet become replicable actions. It highlights amazingly radical and promising forward thinking that can ignite further ideas for innovative practices.

Winner: Unnayan Banka – Reinventing Education using Technology, India


Category: Citizen-focused Innovation

Honours innovative policies, programmes, services, and access to services that are outward-facing and client-based. This category showcases solutions that address root causes or emerging societal demands for the delivery of the organisation’s programmes and services to citizens and other external partners.

Winner: Helping Elderly Singaporeans Plan for Retirement in a Digital World, Singapore


Category: Innovation in Public Service Management

Recognises innovations that are largely internal/inward-facing to government and consist of functional or whole-of-system policies or business processes. It showcases innovative solutions to everyday issues, underlying demands of running a public service organisation in any number of fields.

Winner: Unified Agriculture Markets, India


Category: Innovation DNA.

Recognises initiatives centred on building internal capacity for creativity and innovation, embedding open innovation practices in government, and systematically soliciting input at all levels. It is characterised by an environment where innovation, creativity, space to challenge, and noble failure have become, or are becoming, inherent to the climate, mind-set, attitudes and structures of the organisation and its leadership.

Winners: InNEAvation (NEA´s Innovation DNA), Singapore

The awards ceremony reached its conclusion when Minister Harmon presented the Overall Gold Medal to Unified Agriculture Markets, India

CAPAM enables public service professionals to effectively solve challenges and pursue interests by exchanging knowledge, networking, and engaging in shared learning about leading practices.

Tiffny Rhodius.

Images: Jules Gibson.


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