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This blog is a contribution from one of IIPP’s Master of Public Administration (MPA) students. To find out more about the course, click here.

By Julie McLaren

A recent letter sent from President Biden to his most senior science advisor, Dr. Eric S. Lander, lays down the challenge for future science, technology and innovation policy by asking a simple question: how can it address major global challenges and benefit all in society?

This is a huge question, and the very act of posing it should give us all pause for reflection. …


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By Martha McPherson and Nick Kimber

Living with COVID-19 in UCL’s home borough of Camden has been hard for many residents. The borough entered the pandemic from a challenging place where change and a new focus was needed for the Council and its key partners.

Even before COVID struck, despite high overall employment, many of Camden’s citizens were not benefitting from the growth taking place around them. There were high levels of in-work poverty and insecure work, a gap in the rate of employment between those with a health condition or disability and those without, and a lower employment rate…


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Photo by K. Mitch Hodge on Unsplash

By Rowan Conway and Mariana Mazzucato

Alongside the NHS, the BBC is an institution that defines Britain. With iconic storytellers from David Attenborough to Steve McQueen, the BBC narrates the story of us, and few nations can claim such a high profile platform from which their story is told to the world. And yet, perhaps because it is so familiar, we fail to appreciate just how much value it creates.

As we outline today in this Project Syndicate article, understanding the BBC’s contributions to the British economy and society — and the concept of public value more broadly — requires…


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Photo by Kari Shea on Unsplash

By Charles Leadbeater

The year which many hoped might be better than the last was not a week old before it confounded us.

A pandemic that many hoped we were getting the better of through science and innovation proved its own devastating capacity to evolve and adapt, to become more threatening than it was even in 2020. A troubling new variant emerged in Britain just as the country left the legal frameworks of the European Union, to be blown around like a plastic bag in the wind. The outgoing US President urged his angry supporters to invade Congress to prevent…


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Photo by Karsten Würth on Unsplash

By Thomas Marois

Over the past year governments around the world have taken unprecedented measures to support businesses and households in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic. One overlooked part of this response has been the role of public banks, which have been mobilised across the world to combat the economic fallout from the pandemic.

Public banks are banks that exist and persist within the public sphere of nation states. …


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Photo by Li-An Lim on Unsplash

This blog is a contribution from one of IIPP’s Master of Public Administration (MPA) students. To find out more about the course, click here.

By Daniel Wainwright

“The world’s first trillionaire will be made in climate change.” So said (or rather, tweeted) Chamath Palihapitiya, a venture capitalist and CEO of Social Capital, an impact investment firm.

From renewable power to electric cars and smart sensors to carbon sequestration — demand for products and services that help reduce our impact on the world’s environment and climate are set to soar over the next few decades, backed by massive government investment in…


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By Dan Hill and Rowan Conway

This week, the EU formally launched the “New European Bauhaus” initiative. By investing in creativity it promises to be an interdisciplinary movement that will power the European Green Deal. As part design studio, part accelerator and part network, here are some thoughts on how it might succeed.

I n her inaugural State of the Union address to the European parliament, Ursula von der Leyen announced the intention to create a “New European Bauhaus”. This week she set out concrete plans for its inception, with the following bold statement:

“I want Next Generation EU to…


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Photo by Tyler Casey on Unsplash

By Martha McPherson and Kate Roll

A t UCL’s recent Beyond Boundaries conference on the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals, listeners may have been surprised to hear panelists refer to this as a “1968 moment” for the SDGs. With Covid and widespread economic hardship on the front pages, are we really likely to see new enthusiasm for the 17 goals, which were universally adopted in 2015?

But perhaps we shouldn’t be surprised. …


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By Luca Kühn von Burgsdorff

This blog is a contribution from one of IIPP’s Master of Public Administration (MPA) students. To find out more about the course, click here.

It’s not often that you find yourself studying at an institute that boasts the likes of Mariana Mazzucato, Tim O’Reilly, and Hilary Cottam. All three are pathfinders and pioneers, pushing the boundaries of ideas and actions in their respective realms of expertise — be it economics, innovation, or social entrepreneurship.

The UCL Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose (IIPP) is, however, more than just a congregation of high-profile academics and practitioners…


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By Rowan Conway

A s part of an ongoing partnership between the UCL Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose (IIPP) and the OECD’s Observatory of Public Sector Innovation (OPSI), we hosted an online immersive workshop on 2 December 2020 to explore the challenges and opportunities of directing mission-oriented innovation in practice.

The event brought together leaders from across a range of government institutions in OECD countries and from the IIPP MOIN network. Over 150 civil servants, economists, business leaders and policymakers from 36 countries took part, including: Brazil, Malaysia, Czech Republic, Thailand, Italy, South Africa, Canada, Spain, Denmark, Estonia, Austria…

UCL Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose

Changing how public value is imagined, practiced and evaluated to tackle societal challenges | Director: Mariana Mazzucato | Deputy Director: Rainer Kattel

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