Latest Event Updates
It’s lovely to see so many positive blog posts from Leeds GovJam participants. Here’s a round-up of the ones we’ve seen so far. Please let us know if you’ve also posted about Leeds GovJam so we can link to it here.
Tom Simcox – Fearless service design at Leeds GovJam:
I was amazed at how much we created in just 48 hours. GovJam is all about trying new ways of designing and collaborating with others. We did it while having lots of fun!
But we did more than that.
We discovered unmet needs of the citizens of Leeds. We started designing public services to meet them. We did it by being fearless, by going out and talking to people to find out how we could make their lives better.
Our sponsors Digital DWP also made this fantastic video diary of Tom’s Leeds GovJam experience:
Emma Browes – Jammin’:
What I particularly enjoyed was –
Learning by doing, not talking
Keeping it fast & dirty – fail fast & iterate
Pushing forward with your minimal viable product – don’t wait for perfect
Aiming sky high – there are real opportunities to use awesome design to make a MAHOOSIVE difference to people’s lives in the public sector. We shouldn’t aim any lower.
Liam Bolton – Leeds GovJam 2015:
As a first-time Jammer admittedly I was not sure what to expect from it all. By the end of the first day I was hugely inspired by the GovJam and the people involved. Everyone at the Leeds GovJam wanted to use their skills and knowledge to bring about people-centred change to public services through creative service design. It was also a lot of fun! Taking part was personally a huge privilege.
Simon Wilson – Leeds GovJam 2015: in just three points:
After Leeds GovJam on Thursday evening I wrote those points down. In short I felt Leeds GovJam was so good! I might have been getting carried away, rose-tinted specs, and all that. I held back from bashing this out quickly, to get it out as soon after the event as possible. Let it settle a bit…
My thoughts on GovJam are settled though. I think it’s one of the few events I’ve been to where just about everything seemed to click.
Matt Edgar – Thanks, everyone! We just rocked the public sector:
Stand-out moments for me (sorry if this is one of those “you had to be there” posts 🙂
* Seeing a full house for the Tuesday evening kick-off
* Ben Holliday’s powerful talk about doing user-centred design at DWP
* Stick-figure voting to organise the project teams
* Handing out new-style jam passports including 10 service design methods to try
* Watching the space empty out on Wednesday morning as teams headed into Leeds to do their first round of user research
Kathryn Grace – Leeds GovJam 2015 and the follow-up Understanding and sharing the problem… finding opportunities:
…when Tom Riordan CEO of Leeds City Council did his little talk on engaging with service design and design thinking, and then a council worker talked about council interest in their service prototype in their final presentation… tears of joy over flowed. It was my Martin Luther King moment… I had a dream – Thank goodness it wasn’t just me… we all shared it in some way at Leeds GovJam this week – we wanted to rock the public sector and we did.
We’re going to write more about Leeds GovJam 2015 over the next week or so, but for now you can see all the projects on govjam.org …
… and take a look at Lisa’s lovely photos of the event…
People we need to thank:
- Global GovJam organisers Adam, Markus and Natasche for making this amazing event happen around the world
- Twin jammers at the Athens GovJam for sharing their progress through their first jam
- Digital DWP for being the loveliest event sponsors imaginable
- Ben Holliday for his inspirational talk on the opening night
- Supporters UKGovCamp and SD Leeds
- Hosts Kathryn and Paul at ODI-Leeds for keeping us fed and watered, and for the perfect jamming space
- Councillor James Lewis and Leeds Council CEO Tom Riordan for joining our end-of-jam show and tell
- All the jammers, including contingents from Leeds City Council, DWP and the rest of the World!
- The volunteer team who give up many hours of their time before, during and after the jam
Stay tuned for more service design and design thinking goodness in Leeds. Announcements coming soon!
Matt and the Leeds GovJam team 🙂
Less than one week to go before jammers gather around the world to rock the public sector!
For last year’s Leeds GovJam we put together this collection of links to background reading and resources on service design and design thinking.
Happy browsing! Do please let us know in the comments below if you have any favourite resources not mentioned here…
What is Service Design?
- Service Design Network – What is service design?
- Design for Service – Books for Service Designers
- Jeff Howard – Design for Service
- This is Service Design Thinking
- Service Design Books
An awesome part of GovJam is the feeling of being involved in a global event. That unifying sense of shared purpose as teams all over the world collaborate against the clock to innovate around a global theme. A good way to keep in touch with everyone during the Jam is to follow the hashtag, #GGovJam. Another way is to hook up with a jam that’s happening somewhere else. This is when ‘Twin Jams’ are useful.
The idea of Twin Jams was developed by GovJam HQ to allow two jams to connect before, during and after the Jam. This gives teams a partner with whom they can share progress and mutual support. You might want to ask your Twin Jam about how they promote the Jam in their part of the world. You may want to ask questions about your ideas. And, you will most likely want to share more detailed feedback on prototypes than is possible in a 140-character tweet. This is important because jamming is not just about arriving at the destination – delivering working prototypes. It’s also about the journey we all take over the two days, developing networks, learning to do stuff better, together.
Hooking up with a Twin Jam can be done via webcam, a Skype session, Hangout or similar. It is often helpful to schedule some time when everyone in your team can gather around the webcam. During last year’s Jam we used Skype to connect with teams in Whangarei, Rotterdam, Milan, Ottawa, Manchester and Tokyo. This was a lot of fun and felt quite Eurovision-esque: ‘Hello, Tokyo, can we have your votes, please?’ Here, the general idea is to ‘show and tell’, to share progress and feedback. Connecting with lots of different jams was great but it took a bit of organising to coordinate calls across all the different time zones. So this year we are excited about having one main partner, our Twin Jam, to share our journey in more detail…
We are now pleased to announce that Athens GovJam (@AthensGovJam) is our Twin Jam for 2015 and we’re looking forward to many happy connections!
Also, if you want to join us in Leeds, there are still some tickets remaining at Eventbrite.
— Lisa Jeffery
For the second year running, Leeds GovJam will be at the wonderful ODI-Leeds.
You can get a feel for the space by looking through Lisa’s photos from last year’s Leeds GovJam.
ODI-Leeds is a light and open collaboration space on the top floor of Munro House…
There’s loads of room for up to 50 jammers to work in project teams…
And it’s right opposite the bus station and market, making it really easy to take your prototypes out onto the street…
We’re also delighted to announce that Leeds GovJam 2015 will be supported by UKGovcamp Grants.
UKGovcamp is the free, annual ‘unconference’ for people interested in how the public sector does digital stuff. The organisers put some of their left-over sponsorship money into a grants pot each year, and use it to help other similar events get off the ground.
We’re doubly fortunate because UKGovcamp has also supported our sister event, Leeds Service Jam. Thanks!
Could your organisation help to make Leeds GovJam 2015 even better?
Leeds GovJam is run by volunteers, and nobody makes a profit from it. Sponsors and supporters help us keep costs down, open up new possibilities, and provide extra treats and prizes to jam participants.
In return your organisation gets to show its support for public sector innovation in a high-profile and practical way.
To find out more, contact Matt Edgar – firstname.lastname@example.org – 07964 763252
Thanks to our amazing volunteers and sponsors, here’s how we put on a £15,000 event for less than £700
Wrapping up the accounts for Leeds GovJam 2014 has highlighted just how much we relied on our volunteers and sponsors, and what fantastic value participants got for their ticket price.
At full commercial rates, including venue hire and GovJam team costs, we estimate that a two-day event of this scale for 40 people would cost at least £15,000.
In the open spirit of the jam, here’s the detail of how we did it…
We’ve had a couple of lovely write-ups from last week’s Govjam.
So what did we learn? Well, first up, we learned about the importance of playfulness in eliminating fear in teams. We were inspired to try new approaches, to work in new ways and to ‘fail fast’. Ideas blossomed and became real through prototyping. And teams were actively encouraged to take their prototypes outside of the building, to test their ideas (and assumptions) on others, and to invite challenge from ‘customers’. Crucially, the time constraint of the two-day event meant that teams had to keep moving and iterating their concepts at pace in order to improve them. Any organisation can learn from such an approach to service design.
Leeds City Council Service Improvement Officer Andi Elliott made his notes as a document which he’s kindly allowed us to reproduce below. We particularly like his take-outs from the event too:
What value was gained from the day?
The event ‘blurb’ suggests ‘Govjam is a practical way to find out about service design and how it can make a difference to where we work. What we actually learnt from taking part in this event was:
* Ideas, improvements, concept development and communication on a local or global basis can be achieved in very short time frames and with simple tools.
* That by imposing shorter time frames, project decision making be- comes simpler and more direct with less need for meetings.
* Available resources can be adapted rather than always using new ones.
* Any colleague at whatever level can do this.
And GovJam team member Si Wilson blogged about his experience of the jam:
I was chuffed to bits the event went so well, as did the rest of the team running the event. What’ll be interesting for me will be what the attendees do next, and hopefully those guys will report back at some point in the not-too-distant-future about how some of the GovJam spirit has helped them within their services!
Thanks to Lisa, Rebecca, Andi and Si for their write-ups. If you’ve written about Leeds GovJam, please let us know!
Each Leeds GovJammer was given a passport to be stamped for every service design method they tried…
We made these posters to explain the methods a little more…
As with everything made during GovJam, we’re releasing the posters under a Creative Commons License. Share and enjoy!
The first ever Leeds GovJam is over. We’ll say a proper thank you to everyone who made it happen over the coming days. For now just look at the amazing services our 6 teams of jammers prototyped – all in less than 48 hours of learning by doing…