Tag Archives: Public Innovation

January, the first month of 2017 was an Innovative month. The Armenian second “Public Sector Innovation Week” series of events took place from 19-27 January. The week of events was organised as part of the EU-funded “Innovation for Development” project, which is being implemented by UNDP/Kolba Innovations Lab.
The first event of “Public Sector Innovation Week” was devoted to a 4-day workshop about the design and development of future “Open Governance” facility in Armenia. How do new technologies affect public administration? How do public sector representatives respond to these changes? These questions were discussed on 23 January during a non-formal PechaKucha meeting.
On 27 January, the week concluded with a “Public Innovation” award ceremony. In 2016, Kolba Innovations Lab, with the support of the Armenian government, released a call for civil servants to come up with innovative ideas for the public sector.  State employees of the Ministry of Justice and the Administration of Prime Minister submitted 23 applications to resolve small-scale issues through innovative means.
Piotr Świtalski, the EU Ambassador in Armenia, Bradley Busetto, the UN resident Coordinator in Armenia, Vache Gabrielyan, the Armenian Deputy Prime Minister, and Arpine Hovhannisyan, the Armenian Minister of Justice, attended the awards ceremony.

ARS_4815Ambassador Świtalski highlighted the importance of innovation in the public sector: ‘Let me make a clear distinction: when we say innovation, we don’t mean invention. There is a big difference between invention and innovation. Making inventions is not so difficult, but innovation is very challenging because you need a system – a proper, modern governance to bring all of the ideas to life. The EU is happy that we can support projects like this. We want to be associated with creativity and innovation. When we hear from the new government that the future of the country should be based on a vision of an intellectual Armenia, it looks like a perfect match. The project seemed risky at first but we are thrilled at the number of applicants and the positive feedback. I hope that it will leave a mark’.
Minister Hovhannisyan mentioned that these types of project motivate young people to implement their innovative ideas: ‘I am happy to be here not because it’s a joint programme but because of the project theme. I am also happy that the Ministry of Justice has assumed the role of leader in the implementation of innovation programmes, such as the recently launched www.e-draft.am which publishes drafts of legal acts, and unified offices for the joint provision of state services, etc. We must think without hesitation and move forward fast’.
The six best and most innovative ideas were awarded prizes and certificates. UNDP/Kolba Innovations Lab, with the help of the EU, will support incubation projects in idea incubation and implementation phases. Encouraging awards were also given out during the ceremony.