The Very Long List of Innovation Toolkits and Resources

Currently Identified Innovation / Innovation-Relevant Toolkits / Guidance Resources

By Alex Roberts


An extensive list of innovation relevant toolkits and resources.


Name (Owner)

Method/Area of Interest



BETA Guide to developing behavioural interventions for randomised controlled trials (Australian Government)

Behavioural insights

This guide outlines BETA’s approach to developing behavioural interventions for randomised controlled trials (RCTs). It pulls together behavioural and RCT expertise from around the world, in an easy to use guide for those looking to develop behavioural interventions for RCTs in government.


Behavioural (Independent)

Behavioural insights

The website aims to be a major knowledge broker in the behavioral sciences, particularly behavioral economics and related areas (nudging, behavior change, etc.). As an online hub, the site’s mission is to connect people, provide resources, as well as promote the growth and relevance of the discipline.


Implementation Guidance for Executive Order 13707: Using Behavioral Science Insights to Better Serve the American People (US Government)

Behavioural insights

This guidance document focuses on agency implementation of Section 1(a)(i) of the Order, which encourages agencies to identify promising opportunities to apply behavioral-science insights to Federal policies and programs.



The European Nudging Network (OECD et al.)

Behavioural insights

The mission of TEN is to ensure a scientifically and ethically responsible dissemination of applied behavioural insights throughout Europe and beyond. This is done through a range of Open Access (OA) online resources and member activities.


Government Service Design Manual (UK Government)

Service design, digital

Discover what it means to be part of an agile, user-focused and multidisciplinary team, delivering digital services in government.


Government Digital Service Design Principles (UK Government)

Service design, digital

Design principles and examples of how they have been used.


Digital Services Playbook (US Government)

Service design, digital

A playbook of 13 key “plays” drawn from successful practices from the private sector and government that, if followed together, will help government build effective digital services.


Service Design and Delivery Process (Australian Government)

Service design, digital

Explanation of the 4 stage design and delivery process.


User Centred Design Toolkit (South Australian Government)

Service design, digital

Information about using user-centred design.


Design Methods for Developing Services (UK Design Council)

Service design

An introduction to service design and a selection of service design tools


Service Design Toolkit (Finland, JAMK University of Applied Sciences)

Service design

The tools presented here are a means for you to analyze your thoughts. By seeking the answers to their questions, you may realize something essential about your business, your customers' needs and their value determination process.


Practical Service Design – The Guide (Practical Service Design, US Company)

Service design

Guide to service blueprinting


A Rough Guide to the

Shift Surrey Approach (FutureGov / Surrey Council UK)

Service design

Guide to design better public services


User Experience Design Services (SAP)

Service design

“Scenes” is a tool and a method to create visual stories about products and services fast, collaboratively and iteratively. It empowers business leaders and professionals of all industries to shape their ideas and scenarios in the form of fun illustrative storyboards without the need of refined drawing skills.


Learning Resources (More than Metrics company)

Service Design

Resources (templates, videos and basic guides) on personas, journey mapping, and stakeholder mapping


Service Design Tools (Roberta Tassi et al.)

Service design

An open collection of communication tools used in design processes that deal with complex systems.


Designing for Public Services (Nesta / IDEO)

Design thinking

Collection of practical tools and methods for using design in public services.


IDEO Design Kit (IDEO)

Design thinking

Resource on human-centred design.


Design with Intent Toolkit (Dan Lockton)

Design thinking

A collection of design patterns, or ‘gambits’, for influencing user behaviour through design.


Design Method Toolkit (MediaLab Amsterdam)

Design thinking

A collection of design and research methods: categorised to help you select, time based to help you plan. Plan and execute your design research, ideation, experimentation and creation within short iterations.


Shape Better Services (European House of Design Management / European Commission)

Design thinking

The main aim of the project is to enable public sector organisations to use design management thinking and methods currently used by leading companies in the private sector.


Follow the Rabbit: A Field Guide to Systemic Design (Canada, Alberta Co-Lab)

Design thinking

This Field Guide is designed to support budding systemic designers to facilitate and lead systemic design projects. It’s designed for systemic designers who have basic familiarity with SD concepts and are looking for some practical tips and tools to put theory into action.


Paper Prototyping: A Guide For Surfacing Innovative Ideas More Quickly (Rockefeller Foundation)


A guide to paper prototyping.


System Thinking Tools (FSG)

Systems thinking

A blog series introducing and sharing guidance for using different tools to support systems thinking and practice.


Public Sector Innovation Toolkit (Australian Government)


Toolkit for public sector innovation.


Government Innovators Network (Harvard)


Resources and research on public sector innovation.


Open Policy Making Toolkit (UK Government)

Innovation, open policy making

This manual includes information about Open Policy Making as well as the tools and techniques policy makers can use to create more open and user led policy.


Open Governance Research Exchange (GovLab et al.)


A platform for researchers to share findings and methodologies; and a repository of theoretical and applied research on open and innovative governance techniques and tools.


Ideas to Impact (University of Queensland, Australia)


Short online course/resources on innovation.


Making Creativity Happen (Flanders DC, Belgian NFP)


Tools for creativity / innovation (in Flemish).


Hyper Island Toolbox (Hyper Island, private firm)


A resource kit you can use to apply creative collaboration and unleash potential in your team or organization.


Open Innovation Toolkit (Mozilla)

Innovation, design thinking

A community sourced set of best practices and principles to help you incorporate human-centered design into your product development process


Adobe Kickbox (Adobe)


Kickbox is a new innovation process that Adobe developed for its own use and then open-sourced so everyone can use it. It is both a process for individuals and a system for deploying that process across an organization at scale. It’s designed to increase innovator effectiveness, accelerate innovation velocity, and measurably improve innovation outcomes. It can also optimize innovation investments by reducing costs compared to traditional approaches.


Innovation Tools and Resources (Nesta)


Practical tools and resources to help you and your team spark new ideas and support innovation whatever you’re working on.


Implementing Innovation: A User’s Manual for Open Government Programs (Reboot, Mexican social impact firm)


A hands-on resource that provides practical advice and guidance for government changemakers as they navigate the specific challenges of implementing innovative programs in the public sector.


The Toolkit Project (The Toolkit Project)


Visual tools for creative problem solving - practical visual tools for strategy, design and product management.


Your Guide to Workplace Innovation (European Workplace Innovation Network (EUWIN))


EUWIN has always taken a practical approach. Therefore we decided to answer the main question related to workplace innovation: “how can we actually do it?” This short guide will give you practical knowledge, inspire you with great case studies, help you to assess current practice in your organisation, suggest pathways to change, and signpost you towards further sources of information and support.


Tools for each stage of innovation (UAE Mohammed Bin Rashid Centre for Government Innovation)


The Mohammed Bin Rashid Centre for Government Innovation provides a wide variety of tools and techniques, enabling government entities to develop initiatives and come up with innovative solutions to enhance the efficiency of the government sector, and improve the services provided by the government to individuals and entities.


Catalyzing public sector innovation (Deloitte University Press)


Public sector organizations hoping to address societal challenges through innovation may wonder where and how they can make the most impact. Understanding the interplay of five key roles in an innovation ecosystem can help.


DIY Toolkit and DIY Learn (Nesta et al.)

Innovation, development / social innovation

The DIY Toolkit has been especially designed for development practitioners to invent, adopt or adapt ideas that can deliver better results.


Toolkit for Supporting Social Innovation with the European Social Investment Funds (ESF)

Social innovation

We feel this publication presents the state of the art in terms of knowledge and practice regarding innovation oriented towards tackling the complex societal challenges we face today. It is practical (with many tools, including for fund managers) while at the same time building upon sound theoretical foundations.


Positive Deviance Initiative (NFP)

Social innovation

Guidance on using a positive deviance approach.


Social Innovation Camps: a toolkit for troublemakers (UNDP edition)

Social innovation

Guidance on running a social innovation camp


i-teams: The teams and funds making innovation happen in governments around the world (Nesta / Bloomberg Philanthropies)

Innovation labs / teams

Explores in-depth twenty innovation teams and funds from around the world. We analyse the diversity of structures and approaches, their impacts, and the key lessons for other government leaders looking to emulate these efforts.


Establishing, running and closing a public sector innovation lab (Australian Government)

Innovation labs

Insights about establishing and operating an innovation lab.


Innovation Labs: A Do-It-Yourself Guide (Unicef)

Innovation labs

This document gives you the information you need to create your own lab. This could be a UNICEF lab—or could simply be a space of creativity that is aimed at solving significant global problems through the application of dedicated local resources.


US Public Participation Playbook (US Government)


The U.S. Public Participation Playbook is a resource for government managers to effectively evaluate and build better services through public participation using best practices and performance metrics.


A to Z of Engagement Techniques (Tasmanian Department of Health and Human Services)


Range of different engagement techniques, including an assessment of difficulty, cost, when might be used, how many people might be needed to run, timeframes, innovation level and a step by step guide for using.


The Digital Engagement Guide (Helpful Technology, UK company)

Digital engagement

Ideas and practical help to use digital and social media in the public sector.


Federal Crowdsourcing and Citizen Science Toolkit (US Government)


The Toolkit helps US federal employees use crowdsourcing and citizen science in their work. It provides five basic process steps for planning, designing and carrying out a crowdsourcing or citizen science project.


Get Started with Challenge and Prize Competitions (US Government)

Challenge and prizes

Resources on running a challenge and prize competition.


Challenge and Prize Toolkit (US Government)

Challenges and prizes

Information and resources to guide federal employees working on challenges and prizes. (In beta)


Challenge Prizes: A Practice Guide (Nesta Centre for Challenge Prizes)

Challenges and prizes

The guide shares insights and understandings from the Centre’s work to design and run challenge prizes and to support others to do the same.


“And the winner is …” Capturing the promise of philanthropic prizes (McKinsey)

Challenges and prizes

It aims to help improve current prizes and stimulate effective future use by developing a number of simple frameworks and compiling useful lessons for sponsors. While targeting the philanthropic sponsor, we believe these perspectives will also be helpful to governments and corporations considering prizes.


Foresight Training Manual (Canadian Government)

Horizon scanning / futures

This guide is a facilitation toolkit for staff at Horizons and others interested in practising the Horizons Foresight Method (or parts of it) in their own organizations. For those new to foresight, the manual provides a detailed description of the concepts and processes.


Innovation Tool Kit: A practical guide: Introduction to horizon scanning in the public sector (Australian Government)

Horizon scanning / futures

A part of the Australian Public Sector Innovation Toolkit. Provides guidance on how to do horizon scanning.


Project Open Data (US Government)

Open data

A collection of code, tools, and case studies to help US federal agencies adopt the Open Data Policy and unlock the potential of government data


Policy Quality (New Zealand Government)

Good government

The Policy Quality Framework describes the key characteristics of quality policy advice, as well as the ‘enablers’ of great advice, like considering multiple perspectives, good commissioning, quality assurance processes and work planning.


Quality of Public Administration - A Toolbox for Practitioners (European Commission)

Good government

This EU Quality of Public Administration Toolbox aims to support, guide, encourage and inspire those who want to build public administrations that will create prosperous, fair and resilient societies. The Toolbox tries to help countries with addressing country-specific recommendations and with delivering successful strategies and operational programmes.


Effective Institutions Platform (OECD et al.)

Good government

Evidence and Resource Library on Public Sector Reform.


Inclusion Toolkit (Danish Design Centre)

Design/ living lab

Designing a user-centred living lab from the ground up


A Guide to Data Innovation for Development - From idea to proof-of-concept (UNDP)


‘A Guide to Data Innovation for Development - From idea to proof-of-concept,’ provides step-by-step guidance for development practitioners to leverage new sources of data. It is a result of a collaboration of UNDP and UN Global Pulse with support from UN Volunteers, led by UNDP innovation teams in Europe and Central Asia and Arab States.


Innovation Spaces: The New Design of Work (Brookings Institution)

Innovation spaces

Authors Julie Wagner and Dan Watch draw from nearly 50 in-depth interviews with global-reaching and local-serving architects and innovation space managers to analyze the continuum of modern innovation-oriented workspaces. They find the role of well-designed innovation spaces in improving firm competitiveness, company culture, and the formulation of new products and ideas, offers important lessons for companies, universities and other drivers of the innovation economy on how to re-imagine space given three major trends in modern innovation


Additional Resources - Serious Games


Name (Owner)

Method/Area of Interest



Impact: A Foresight Game (Developed by private firm in conjunction with Policy Horizons Canada)


A serious board game that teaches you to think critically and imaginatively about emerging technology and the future of society.


Social Media Planner (Private firm)

Social Media

Social Media Planner is an easy and fast way for teams & individuals to design, discuss and test their social media strategies


Game of Life 2050 (adopted from a game initially developed by the EU Policy Lab)

Systems thinking

An interactive board game in which players interact with four scenarios that describe the radical changes needed to be living within key environmental boundaries by 2050.


Additional Resources – Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) / Online Courses


Name (Owner)

Method/Area of Interest



Innovation in the Government (UAE)


The Innovations in Government course is provided by Mohammad Bin Rashid Center for Government Innovation, to offer key frameworks and tools for promoting excellence in the public sector and fostering innovative policy solutions to the 21st century challenges in government. It presents the Mohammed Bin Rashid Center for Government Innovation frameworks, and offers case studies from leading government around the world including Singapore, UK, US, Canada, and United Arab Emirates.


Innovatión en el Sector Public (Spain)


'Innovation in the Public Sector' is a proposal by the Andalusian Institute of Public Administration to move towards a new management model, which adds value to the public through shared innovation processes substantially. The aim of the MOOC is to propose a first reflection framework from which to address, understand, systematize and establish key practices of the contexts in which they are born and develop innovative experiences.


Design : Creation of Artifacts in Society (University of Pennsylvania)


This is a course aimed at making you a better designer. The course marries theory and practice, as both are valuable in improving design performance. Lectures and readings will lay out the fundamental concepts that underpin design as a human activity. Weekly design challenges test your ability to apply those ideas to solve real problems. The course is deliberately broad - spanning all domains of design, including architecture, graphics, services, apparel, engineered goods, and products. The emphasis of the course is the basic design process: define, explore, select, and refine.



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