ideasUK Conference 2011 – Workshop Speaker – Chris Bolton – Calculating the Benefits from Innovation Programmes

A double post this week introducing workshop speakers for the ideasUK annual conference. Our second speaker this week is Chris Bolton, who works at the Welsh Audit Office, who will hold a workshop on: Calculating the Tangible and Intangible Benefits from Innovation Programmes.

Chris Bolton - Calculating the Benefits from Innovation ProgrammesChris has worked for a number of organisations that include water companies, the Environment Agency and District Audit. More recently he has worked for the Wales Audit Office in areas such as governance, democracy and citizen participation. He undertakes audit and assurance work for bodies outside of Wales which include the Council of Europe and the States of Guernsey Public Accounts Committee.

His particular area of interest is in improving public services through better knowledge transfer and innovation. Over recent years he has led the development of the Wales Audit Office Good Practice Exchange. This is an initiative aimed at gathering examples of good practice (wherever they might be) and sharing the knowledge across public services.

He is currently interested in how the internet and social media can be used as a cost effective method of engaging people, transferring knowledge and supporting innovation.

Calculating the Tangible and Intangible Benefits from Innovation Programmes

The presentation will build upon the Einstein quote: “Everything that can be counted does not necessarily count; and everything that counts cannot be necessarily be counted.”

The workshop will stress that numbers alone can be counterproductive and lead to ‘gaming’ and in some cases perverse incentives.

Over auditing can be a killer of innovation (and motivation).

  • What should get priority in measuring the effectiveness of an innovation programme?
  • The tangible or intangible benefits?
  • The workshop will illustrate a few intangible benefits that have been significant.

The workshop will also look at how quality measurement and a focus on outcomes, not outputs is, necessary to get a balanced picture of what is happening.

To support this you need to collect narrative as well as numbers. The numbers are accurate, but not always convincing. Narrative is convincing but not wholly accurate. Put narrative and numbers together and you get an accurate and convincing story.

ideasUK conference brochures can be found at the links below.

ideasUK Conference 2011 Brochure

Conference Masterclass Information and Booking Form

Conference 2011 Booking Form

Conference 2011 Booking Information

So what are you waiting for? Get your booking form back to us today, we look forward to seeing you in Cardiff in November.


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