The time has come to reimagine and redefine public policy. The current definition of public policy as ‘government policies that affect the whole population’ is outdated. Instead, public policy should be recognized as an expression of what a society values, that can be delivered not just by governments but by all of the stakeholders in a society.
Today, society’s values and our understanding of how best to deliver them are evolving rapidly, in ways that bring both greater grounds for optimism but also new risks. The days of laws, regulations, and spending decisions being handed down by faceless civil servants may be gone, but the involvement of multiple stakeholders in policy-making, all in the glare of social media scrutiny, has brought new challenges. Governments still have a crucial role to play, but they now must work with and sometimes against NGOs, philanthropists, communities, and companies.
The pandemic has highlighted the importance of effective policy as the glue holding society together. Where different stakeholders worked well together, there were clear plans, and the most vulnerable were prioritized, the ability to fight Covid-19 was greater. Countries and cities that scored better on the inclusive Social Progress Index fared better during the pandemic than lower-scoring places with similar incomes. The role of new thinking and effective use of new technology has also made a big difference.
At Driving Change, we are committed to changing how public policy is perceived, to reflect the urgent need for better policy and better ways of delivering it. We do this with in-depth reporting on the impact and benefit of policies that have worked, shining a light on the ideas that work and the people advancing them.
Our reporting focuses on an area often neglected by existing mainstream media: the policies from around the world that have proven to be effective. Using the SPI as a benchmark we will showcase policies, projects, and people that have delivered. Looking to the future we will also explore concepts and initiatives that have the potential to become the policies driving a better, more inclusive, prosperous, and sustainable world.
Our Library will house case studies of best practices and act as a resource center for policy practitioners.
Through our Awards program, we will recognize and celebrate the people driving change around the world.