It was fantastic to have our partner agencies speak at our Community of Practice event ‘Behavioural Insights in NSW: One Year On’, with participants engaging directly with project and frontline staff from BI trials that are currently underway in NSW.
DPC Director General Chris Eccles opened the event by speaking about how NSW has become a national leader in the application of BI, engaging with other States and Territories, as well as the Federal Government, on its application to public policy in Australia. Chris announced that NSW would be hosting an international BI conference in 2014, partnering with the UK Cabinet Office and Harvard University to bring some of the leading BI thinkers to Sydney. We are also hoping to hold a smaller event next February with a couple of leading Harvard academics from the Behavioural Insights Group (watch this space!).
Our speakers Shaun Drummond (Western Sydney Local Health District), Mark White (Office of State Revenue) and Julie Mitchell (Treasury Managed Fund) then provided an overview of some of the challenges faced in their respective trials and some of the positive early results.
We then moved to small groups to hear in more detail about the wider suite of BI trials and projects in NSW from partner agencies, including:
- the Cancer Institute NSW
- the Department of Education and Communities
- the Ministry of Health
- the Office of Environment and Heritage
- The Office of State Revenue.
The small group presentations meant that participants were able to ask questions about running a BI project and some of the techniques employed. It was also a great opportunity for the BI team to exchange ideas with participants about what has worked in their various organisations and what else we could consider moving forward. Here are a few interesting highlights:
- There was quite a bit of broad interest in using BI to make changes to letters and forms
- The commitment device being trialled in the Return to Work and Home Energy trials received a lot of interest and there was particular interest around the role this device can play in other policy settings
- There is a lot of interest in the application of BI to more complex social policy issues; for example, the early childhood education work received a lot of interest.
What did you enjoy about the event? We’d really love to hear your feedback!
Stay tuned for an upcoming blog post from Rory with his reflections on the past 12 months.