27 September 2023

IRELAND: Officers build innovation with Lego

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An Irish Government Department spent nearly €34,000 ($A54,000) on an innovation week for Public Servants, which included a Lego building event.

The Lego Serious Play workshop was held in an outdoor pavilion at the Irish Museum of Modern Art in Dublin, with up to 16 participants attending two different sessions.

The Department of Public Expenditure and Reform said the “facilitated method” was designed for creative thinking and problem-solving of real issues and challenges.

Lego building workshops are fashionable in the corporate world, with participants asked to build ‘symbolic or metaphorical’ models of the insights they gain during the training events.

A brochure for the event said it would take place in a “large, heated and ventilated tent” with each participant provided with their own Lego set.

“This Lego Serious Play workshop seeks to unleash the creative and playful side of Public Servants to solve our most pressing problems,” a registration form stated.

It was one of more than a dozen events run as part of the Department’s Innovation Week; the program was influenced by COVID-19 restrictions.

Another workshop on Storytelling for Impact promised to help with communicating innovative ideas — and getting support for them, no matter how difficult they might be.Bottom of Form

A spokesperson for the Department said the events were designed to encourage a culture of innovation, along with managed and calculated risk-taking among Public Servants.

“In instances where costs had to be incurred, Public Service procurement procedures were followed,” the spokesperson said.

Dublin, 26 January 2022

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