Social Media

Friday, 26 February 2016

Building our Future: Developing Tomorrow’s Leaders

Neetu Sharma

Three myths about developing talent in the public service:

Myth #1: The types of public service leaders we need today are the same types we’ll need tomorrow
Reality: The increasingly dynamic and complex environment in government requires public sector leaders to navigate challenges while under constant pressure and scrutiny. Understanding change management at both personal and organization levels, relationship- and network- building, and how to best employ information and technology—these are all key for tomorrow’s leaders to lead effectively.  While governments have taken some steps toward developing these skills, there is much work to do to meet tomorrow’s challenges.

Myth #2: Focus on top-talent leadership development programs will suffice.
Reality: To be effective, leadership development should span all employee categories, creating a shared culture of leadership to tackle complex issues. Distributed leadership is also a must to attract and ready the next generation of leaders (University of Oxford, 2013).

Myth #3: Talent development starts when an employee is first hired.
Reality: Governments must start working more strategically and comprehensively with primary, secondary and post-secondary institutions to address the leadership needs of tomorrow, closing critical competency gaps and institutionalizing leadership in the curriculum.

Three things to know about talent development in the public service:

Tomorrow’s public service leadership will:
1. Nurture talent—To attract and retain talent, governments must proactively address talent retention and leadership building through broad, cross-organizational experiences and learning opportunities. Incorporating employee priorities into organizational culture and educating managers on tools are imperative, as are strategically measuring and addressing employee satisfaction on an ongoing basis.

2. Build relationships—To perform effectively in an increasingly interconnected world, leaders will be bridge-builders—developing strong working relationships and connections at all levels between governments, businesses, not-for-profit sectors, and the public—to address differences and achieve results collaboratively.

3. Adapt—Leading people and leading change requires leaders to be adaptable. Cherishing diversity of opinion in their networks, leaders stay flexible and bring motivational and strategic insights to deal with uncertainty and inspire others for collaborative action.

To learn more about what the public service and educational systems are doing to develop tomorrow’s leaders, visit the Café Pracademique website.

Neetu Sharma is a graduate student with the University of Alberta School of Business. Her research interests include cross-sector collaborations and educational issues. More specifically, her work examines the potential of partnerships spanning the government, private and not-for-profit sectors as well as the role of education and mentorship in leadership development.

Regulating the Sharing Economy

We hope you’ll join us on Monday for a discussion on the issues and potential challenges of regulating the sharing economy. Dr. Robert Murray will be speaking at this session along with Darren Thomas and Nancy Jacobsen. We caught up Dr. Murray to get his perspective on the issues government faces in regulating the sharing economy.
IPAC Impact Blog: What is the sharing economy?
Dr. Murray: The Sharing Economy is a socio-economic system that has emerged over the last 10-15 years that enables people to share resources, commodities, or services. 

IPAC Impact Blog: Who participates and why?

Dr. Murray: The Sharing Economy enables sharing among a number of groups, and in many cases, motivation is based on ease of sharing, perceived benefit, access to a new or innovative approach to an industry, and is highly technological in nature.

IPAC Impact Blog: What is the overall impact on the economy?

Dr. Murray: It’s too soon to say in terms of a quantifiable calculation, in my opinion. The greatest impact thus far has been on our perceptions of industry control, regulation, competition, and governance.

IPAC Impact Blog: How can government regulate the sharing economy to ensure safety, competitiveness, tax compliance, etc.?

Dr. Murray: The first step is for government to understand *why* the services that fall under the Sharing Economy have become so popular, so quickly. By identifying the variables that have made the Sharing Economy popular for consumers, government can better determine how to approach regulatory issues without fundamentally interfering or eliminating the most benefit-driven aspects of the Sharing Economy. 

IPAC Impact Blog: What kind of challenges does the sharing economy pose to governments?

Dr. Murray: Quite a number, including statutory authority, regulatory development and compliance, oversight, registration, etc.

The sharing economy is an major phenomenon that we’re looking forward to discussing further. If you haven’t registered yet, go to to sign up. Also, stay tuned to the blog where we will provide a summary of the key issues and ideas discussed at this event. 

Friday, 12 February 2016

Café Pracademique Announcement

Introducing Café Pracademique: A Forum for Developing Concrete Solutions to Pressing Public Policy Challenges

Café Pracademique is the newest initiative of IPAC Edmonton. It aims to mobilize knowledge by uniting practitioners, academics and citizens to develop concrete solutions to pressing public policy challenges in four key areas: Public Sector Leadership, Environment & Sustainability, Digital Public Service and Indigenous Affairs. 

Between March and April 2016, the first four Café Pracademique events will take place in Edmonton. Various high profile public policy experts from academia and the public sector will attend and contribute to these sessions. The events in chronological order are: 

Building our Future: Developing Tomorrow’s Leaders – March 7, 2016
- What new ways of learning, particularly in higher education, will Canadians need in order to thrive in an evolving society and labour market?

Green is the New Black: Mobilizing Eco-Citizens – March 22, 2016
- What effects will the quest for energy and natural resources have on our society and our position on the world stage?

Advancing Inclusive Digital Services – April 12, 2016 
- How can emerging technologies be leveraged to benefit all e-citizens, including persons with disabilities?

Connecting our Futures : Building Reconciliation Today – April 28, 2016
- How are the experiences and aspirations of Aboriginal Peoples in Canada essential to building a successful shared future?

Why are these initiatives important?

Often there is a disconnect between academics, practitioners and citizens when addressing challenging public policy issues. This can be attributed to the different priorities and areas of expertise of these key stakeholders. Café Pracademique’s events are significant as they provide a knowledge-sharing platform for stakeholders to discuss these issues and enable them to devise cooperative solutions which take into account the viewpoints of all interested parties.  Furthermore, these events generate concrete outcomes (roadmaps, educational multimedia tools and options to consider), which will allow participants to bring the knowledge they acquire from these sessions back to their own agency or organization. These tools will also help participants implement practical solutions to challenges they face in their own organizations in the areas of Public Sector Leadership, Environment & Sustainability, Digital Public Service and Indigenous Affairs. 

What’s ahead for the Impact Blog?

To support the Café Pracademique events, the IPAC Impact blog will release several articles in the upcoming months. These posts will include interviews with the guest speakers to understand their unique perspectives and ideas; analyses of the outcomes of the events and how they can be applied to the public sector; and a look at the experiences of the participants themselves and what they have learned. Stay tuned.

For more information on Café Pracademique’s events and how to watch it live, visit the website: