Last week, Francis Maude was in Cambridge to launch Solutions Exchange
, a new website intended to connect buyers and suppliers to discuss potential ways of working together.
The site enables buyers within the public sector to post challenges such as: “How could IPS [The Identity & Passport Service] make better use of the facial images in its passport records to detect, prevent and discourage fraud?“ Suppliers can then respond to the challenge with an idea or potential solution.
In addition to challenges, there is a section for themes - broader areas where the government wants solutions, such as “how do we successfully evaluate the effectiveness of government communications?”
It is far too early to make any judgements on whether the site will be a success since it’s still very much in its infancy and, at the time of writing, just two challenges and two themes had been posted. However, it has the potential to be a very interesting development indeed. I will report back in a couple of months once activity has increased.
But to tide you over until then, here’s a story on how the principle turned Goldcorp away from financial ruin and into a very profitable enterprise