Five Good Ideas ®

Five Good Ideas about public policy

Published on 26/04/2016

Many non-profit organizations don’t view themselves as part of the public policy landscape because they are focused on delivering services and programs to their clients, not lobbying for change on Parliament Hill or at Queen’s Park. But, in a number of important ways, the voices of these organizations can help shape critical public policy issues. Sunil’s talk focused on how to develop and communicate policies in a language that governments can understand. He discussed how and why small- and medium-sized organizations should care about the policy environment and how they can help inform government policies.

Five Good Ideas

  1. Identify your goal
  2. Find your hook
  3. Think data and outcomes
  4. Partner with like-minded organizations and individuals
  5. Pitch your idea to the right people at the right time

Five Good Resources

  1. UK Prime Minister’s Strategy Unit. The Policy Hub. Magenta Book: guidance notes for policy evaluation and analysis. Chief Social Researcher’s Office, London: Cabinet Office. 2007.
  2. Jennifer Gold. Better Outcomes for Public Services. Mowat Centre, 2014.
  3. Ron Haskins. Social Programs that Work. New York Times, 2014.
  4. Matt Stempeck. Are Uber and Facebook turning users into lobbyists? Harvard Business Review, 2015.
  5. The Behavioural Insights Team. EAST: Four Simple Ways to Apply Behavioural Insights. 2014.

Sunil Johal

Policy Director, Mowat Centre, School of Public Policy and Governance, University of Toronto

Sunil Johal is Policy Director at the Mowat Centre, School of Public Policy and Governance at the University of Toronto. He leads the Centre’s research activities, manages the research team and teaches a variety of executive education courses. He has a broad range of public policy expertise across economic, social, intergovernmental and regulatory fields. Previously, he was a Director with the Ontario Ministry of Economic Development and Innovation where he led the government’s efforts to modernize its regulatory environment and forge a more productive relationship with the business community. He has also held senior management and policy roles with the Cabinet Office, Ministries of Finance and Intergovernmental Affairs and federal Treasury Board Secretariat. He joined the federal civil service through the Recruitment of Policy Leaders initiative in 2003. Sunil has been a lecturer with Ryerson University’s Department of Politics and Public Administration since 2009 and holds degrees from the London School of Economics, Osgoode Hall Law School and the University of Western Ontario. He is frequently invited to speak about technology and policy issues at conferences and in a variety of media outlets, including the Globe and MailToronto Star, CBC Radio and Television, CTV News, the Guardian, Maclean’s and the Ottawa Citizen.