Humphrey School News—May 2, 2016

Looking for Innovation in State Government, Humphrey School Awards Competition Now Open

State government may not usually come to mind when Minnesotans are thinking about innovation, creativity, and efficiency. But those are precisely the traits the Humphrey School of Public Affairs is looking for from state agencies as it seeks nominations for the annual Minnesota State Government Innovation Awards.

The award competition, now in its third year, recognizes government entities that create greater accountability, foster collaboration, improve efficiency, use technology creatively, reduce costs and improve services to consumers.

Applicants may include, but are not limited to, state agencies, regional policymaking bodies, judicial or legislative branch departments, and statewide education bodies such as MNSCU or the University of Minnesota.

The innovation work described in the entry must take place in Minnesota and must be underway or have taken place within the past two years.  It also must have demonstrated growth beyond the conceptual state, showing progress and impact.

One of the agencies recognized last year is the Minnesota Board on Aging, which developed a program to help people transition more successfully from nursing homes to their residences, which provided the clients with more support and reduced their health care costs.  

The Minnesota Department of Transportation was recognized last year as well for using an accelerated construction method to rebuild a bridge span over Interstate 35E in St. Paul. The “slide-in” construction technique sped up the construction process and reduced the amount of traffic disruption in the area.

 Nominations are being accepted from May 1 until June 3. Up to 10 winners will be chosen in June, and three of the projects will be highlighted in promotional videos. All the winners will be formally recognized at an award ceremony at the Minnesota History Center in St. Paul on July 21.

The State Government Innovation Awards are sponsored by the Humphrey School of Public Affairs’ Public and Nonprofit Leadership Center, with support from the Bush Foundation.

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