This is a guest post from Stephanie Denman, Senior Policy Officer, Resource Planning & Skills, Qld Department of Agriculture and Fisheries

Did you know that July is national Innovation in the Public Sector month? Innovation Month (3-31 July) offers a series of events each year designed to encourage, inform and enable the public service to further embrace innovation.  The theme of 2015’s Innovation Month is ‘Dream, Dare, Do’.

As part of Innovation Month, I was fortunate to attend a GovCamp Innovation Dialogue in Brisbane. It was a great opportunity to get a taster for the upcoming National GovCamp in November, and I was so impressed with the camp I’ve put my hand up to join the organising committee.

What is GovCamp? GovCamp is a conversation. GovCamp is for people who are excited about tackling the challenges we meet in public sector head on. GovCamp is directed by the attendees – no formal programs, no set agendas – you set the direction. GovCamp gives you an opportunity to discuss new ways of operating, question old thinking and to collaborate with like-minded, innovative public sector professionals.

We tackled a number of themes including:

  • What is public sector innovation?
  • Challenges, blockages and opportunities to public sector innovation?
  • What kind of person do you need to be to be an innovator in public service?
  • Social innovation vs public sector innovation.

Coffee conversations covered a large number of areas such as how to improve a department’s briefing process, how to get better collaboration between departments, how to encourage innovation processes within  a department and how to learn from failed innovation processes.

As a participant, it was a fast and energetic workshop, with many conversations continuing after the event had finished. I’m already looking at how I can apply some of the learnings from the day into my role and  more broadly how we can add these to the innovation agenda within DAF.

To follow the live Twitter feed or read through the notes  uploaded by participants directly to Hackpad head to


This post originally appeared on the Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries intranet and is re-posted here with with the author’s permission