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Creating a Collaboration Culture

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In August 2016, the Public Service Commission (PSC) Advisory Board commissioned a review on collaboration in the NSW Public Sector. The Review follows on from work commissioned by the PSC Advisory Board in 2013, which resulted in a research report and a guidance tool (known as the Collaboration Blueprint) which collaborative partners can use to guide the collaboration process.

  • This Review focuses on collaboration in the Human Services sector. Since 2013, the drivers for collaboration in this sector to improve customer, delivery and community outcomes have been given fresh impetus by the Government’s commissioning and contestability agenda.

    Effective collaboration results in outcomes that could not be achieved otherwise.1 This is because collaboration draws on a broader pool of ideas and approaches. The Review found that in some areas of the Human Services sector the use of collaboration is growing. There are positive examples of collaborative projects aimed at redesigning services, coordinating place based activities and working across agency siloes.

    Refer to the full Collaboration Review document to the right.

    1Helen Dickinson, Helen Sullivan, 2014, Imagining the 21st century public service workforce, Melbourne School of Government, p37

    Collaboration Review Case Studies

    Linker Network Case Study

    Case Study: Co-design in Western

    Sydney & Nepean Blue Mountains The Safe Home for Life legislative reforms aim at improving outcomes for vulnerable children and young people, with a particular focus on increasing the number of children and young people at risk of significant harm who receive a face-to-face response.

    Read more about the Linker Network Case Study

    The HIVE Case Study


    There is a long history of quality service delivery in the 12 suburbs that comprise the Mt Druitt postcode (2770), but despite significant government investment, outcomes for vulnerable children and their families have not been improving.23 Having recognised this issue, Family and Community Services provided short term funding to two NGOs (Ten 20 and United Way) in 2014 to develop a business case for a Collective Impact initiative in the area. This initiative is now known as The HIVE.

    Read more about the HIVE Case Study

    Ending HIV Case Study


    There has been a strong history of collaboration between the NSW public sector, NGOs (Community), clinicians and research bodies since the beginning of the AIDS epidemic in the 1980s. This case study focuses on the recent collaboration between the sectors following the introduction of the NSW HIV Strategy 2012-15.

    Read more about the Ending HIV Case Study

    Coledale Community, Tamworth Case Study

    Trigger for collaboration on the Coledale Action Plan

    In 2012 there was concern in the Tamworth community about crime levels within Coledale and their impact on the broader Tamworth area. These concerns were raised in the local media and culminated in a Town Hall community meeting attended by the NSW State Attorney General.

    Read more about the Coledale Community, Tamworth Case Study

  • Collaboration research report titled 'Collaboration between sectors to improve customer outcomes for citizens of NSW'

    Download the full report (PDF 4.4MB)

    The collaboration blueprint provides an overview of the elements to consider when deciding on ‘why’, ‘with whom’ and ‘how’ to collaborate. It is based on a review of collaboration literature as well as insights and experience from practitioners in the public, private and not for profit sectors.

    This collaboration blueprint consists of:

    • A high-level depiction of a collaboration framework
    • Guidance about how to apply the framework
    • A detailed version of the collaboration framework

    This blueprint is a guide. It is designed as a tool to form the basis of discussions within and between potential collaborating organisations. It does not provide ‘yes or no’ answers. Rather, it is intended to guide consideration of the potential or existing collaboration. The blueprint may also trigger new questions to consider specific to different types of collaboration projects.