This site has been archived on 02/02/2015

Navigation path

This website is no longer being updated.

Please visit the new Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs website.

Industrial innovation

Public sector innovation

European Public Sector Innovation Scoreboard cover

The public sector plays a key economic role as regulator, service provider and employer. It accounts for more than 25% of total employment and a significant share of economic activity in the EU Member States. An efficient and productive public sector can be a strong driver of economic growth through its support for and governance of the private sector. At a time where governments face the challenge to ensure financial consolidation while fostering growth, competitiveness and employment, there is a strong justification for efficiency gains, better governance, faster delivery and more user involvement in public sector.

First European Public Sector Innovation Scoreboard published!

European Public Sector Innovation Scoreboard 2013 pdf - 4 MB [4 MB]

Following the Europe 2020 Innovation Union flagship initiative, the European Commission launched a pilot European Public Sector Innovation Scoreboard (EPSIS) with a view to improving our ability to benchmark the innovation performance of the public sector in Europe. The ultimate ambition is to capture and present public sector innovation in a similar way to countries’ innovation performance in the Innovation Union Scoreboard (IUS) and thereby encourage and facilitate innovation activity across the public sector. The 2013 pilot EPSIS is the first EU wide attempt to better understand and to analyse innovation in the public sector. It was developed based on the experience of earlier national and regional projects, tested widely and discussed with a number of key relevant experts. The work will continue.

What are the key results?

The key results show that the public sector in Europe innovates but it faces still a number of obstacles. The involvement of managers and employees makes process innovations in the public sector more likely. The presence of internal barriers to innovation - e.g. lack of management support, staff resistance or risk-averse culture - does not only have a negative effect on innovation but also on the public sector’s effectiveness in general. Ideas from staff, management and clients are the major sources of information used in developing innovations.

Innovation in public administration has positive effects on improved user access to information, improved user satisfaction and faster delivery of services for business and citizens. Improved and innovative administrative solutions in the public service also help to increase competitive and innovative performance of companies. There are still several deficiencies in the public sector, as it could do more to promote innovation through public procurement.

Trends and Challenges in Public Sector Innovation in Europe - December 2012 

This report pdf - 962 KB [962 KB] presents an overview of Public Sector Innovation (PSI) in the European Union as revealed by a pan-EU survey carried out in autumn 2012. The study gathers the perceptions of public officials and national experts alike as regards the development of public sector innovation across the EU. The report brings together qualitative material derived from interviews with selected public officials and academics and more objective data from national statistics offices and elsewhere. An executive summary pdf - 190 KB [190 KB] is also available.

It touches upon the various understanding of public sector innovations in EU Member States, identifies the main drivers and barriers to PSI, draws lessons from some 30 successful or less successful cases and makes useful recommendations to take the theme forward.

The report is complemented by the following six case studies that present in more detail concrete experiences in various countries and sectors:

Workshop on policies supporting public sector innovation – 19 June 2012, Vienna


The workshop discussed fundamental features of policies aimed at fostering innovation within the public sector.

Main documents

Workshop on European Public Sector Innovation Scoreboard (EPSIS) – 10 May 2012, Brussels

 The workshop took stock of progress made and on-going activities towards better understanding of public sector innovation and its impact on economy and society. Emphasis was placed on measurement methodology, availability of data and development of appropriate indicators that would allow capturing the innovation in public sector and its impact on business and citizens. A number of leading European experts made recommendations for better analysis and benchmarking of public sector innovation with the aim to enhance learning and to pilot policy actions in this field.

Share: FacebookGoogle+LinkedInsend this page to a friend

Set page to normal font sizeIncrease font size by 200 percentprint this page