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New Zealand’s DGP Innovation Fund for Digital and Data Innovations

Digital Government Partnership DGP Innovation Fund

New Zealand recently announced the successful initiatives that have gained approval for seed funding from the Digital Government Partnership Innovation Fund, after an arduous process of lean canvas assessments in a first and second round of live pitches.

About the Initiative

According to a recent press release, the Digital Government Partnership (DGP) Innovation Fund is a NZ$ 5 million contestable fund that invests in digital and data innovation.

The fund is administered by the Government Chief Digital Officer (GCDO) team at the Department of Internal Affairs.

It provides an opportunity for agencies to collaborate and invest in early-stage cross-agency pilots and prototypes.

Applications must be led by one of the following New Zealand State sector organisations:

  1. Public service departments
  2. Departmental agencies
  3. Non-public service departments
  4. Crown entities

Applications Criteria for Digital Government Partnership Innovation Fund:

  1. How the initiative aligns with government priorities
  2. How the investment will contribute to New Zealanders’ seamless and integrated experience of, and trust in, public services
  3. How the initiative demonstrates innovation — this fund is not for business as usual costs
  4. The role collaboration plays in the initiative, including the nature of that collaboration
  5. Benefits to the public service or sector that support transformation, including being able to reuse initiatives or parts of initiatives
  6. Initiative costs, and outline options for sustainable funding if the initiative were to become business as usual

In October 2019, a group of leaders and experts from across the public service and the private sector were convened to serve as panel judges for this year’s round of applications to the Digital Government Partnership Innovation Fund.

Fifteen teams from twelve different agencies and crown entities submitted applications. All of them led to thought-provoking and spirited discussions among the judges.

Successful teams

The successful teams will now begin work on delivering their early-stage cross-agency pilots and prototypes.

  1. Social Investment Agency: Manawa (whanau voice)

This is a tool to measure whānau wellbeing whilst amplifying whānau voices in the social sector.

  1. Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade: China Capable Public Sector Interactive Online Scenario

This is a cross-agency programme designed to develop public sector capability in partnering and doing business with China.

  1. Ministry of Social Development: Client Voices Amplified

An update and improvement of Client Voices, a suite of budgeting tools meant to help financial mentors solve their client’s financial problems.

More than just identifying clients’ financial struggles, the update aims to understand their underlying causes.

  1. Ministry of Education: Parenting a Pre-schooler and Starting School

This is an integrated service platform and continuation of SmartStart, which makes it easier for parents to engage in their child’s early education.

  1. New Zealand Trade and Enterprise: Innovation Barometer

This is a data-driven annual snapshot of innovative activity happening across the public sector.

  1. Education New Zealand: My ENZ Portal

This is a new industry web portal to house all Education New Zealand digital tools and services.

  1. Department of Internal Affairs: Transition from Youth to Adulthood

This is an integrated service platform and a single point of information that makes it easier for young people to receive entitlements as they transition into adulthood.


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