Issues

Outcomes and impact of new PfG

Governance in Northern Ireland is changing. Starting with May’s Assembly election, the way politicians and civil servants examine public policy has modernised.

Anyone interested in policy, or the effects of policy, needs to modernise too. Stormont has embraced an “outcomes-based approach”, where measurement of success is focused on the results achieved and the ability to gauge success is built in to processes fundamentally.

Outcomes-based working brings significant benefits to businesses and social enterprises, as well as public authorities, while for anyone working with or alongside government it is now essential. Such quick and dramatic changes can be daunting for any organisation, especially if they have limited experience of outcomes-based working.

However, this October sees a global summit on this exciting new area coming to Belfast. Pioneers within the outcomes movement will join those who have enjoyed the huge, practical benefits, from the state, private and third sectors, to share their experiences and expertise, providing a massive boost to any local organisation that attends.

Outcomes & Impact will explore cutting-edge techniques for governments, businesses and charities, and will take place at the Waterfront Hall on October 10 and 11.

Speakers include Mark Friedman, Director of the Fiscal Studies Policy Institute in Santa Fe, New Mexico, whose book Trying Hard Is Not Good Enough is the defining text of outcomes-based working, and whose Outcomes-Based Accountability (OBA) model is at the centre of the October summit.

When the First and deputy First Minister launched their Programme for Government framework earlier this year, itself built around OBA, Friedman was explicitly praised for his vision and the brilliance of this new way of working.

Other speakers include Andrew Kleine, an award-winning public servant who previously worked at the White House Office of Management and Budget and currently is Budget Director for the City of Baltimore in Maryland; Diana Urban, a state representative from Connecticut and Michael McAfee, Vice President for Programs at PolicyLink, an organisation that is transforming opportunities for young people across America.

Outcomes and Impact is being run locally by the National Children’s Bureau in Northern Ireland, which has seen huge improvements in its own work in recent years, thanks to OBA. Although the NCB is organising the conference, it is not just aimed at charities or those working with children but instead at any organisation looking to dramatically improve outcomes.

Celine McStravick, NCB NI Director, said: “Across the globe governments and other organisations spend and sometimes waste billions on projects without measuring the impacts they have on the problems they are trying to solve. This simple but revolutionary approach solves that problem to the benefit of the economy and society.

“Some of our new super councils and government departments are already using this approach, becoming more efficient and measuring the impact of their investment. This is an unprecedented opportunity to galvanise our learning, and ensure we make the most of ever decreasing resources.”

Government leaders, NGOs, professionals and community activists from around the world are coming to Belfast to discuss how this new and proven method for getting results is changing approaches to social change. Local organisations, regardless of their sector or the type of work they do, should join them at the cutting edge of modern best practice.

Booking and further information is available at outcomesandimpact.com

If you would like to find out about the sponsorship opportunities available please contact Owen Whitford at owhitford@ncb.org.uk or 028 9087 5006.

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