Developed in conjunction with

Institutes of Technology Ireland
Research & Innovation

2014: Collaboration to develop a new accredited approach to innovation management

Letterkenny Institute of Technology (LYIT) and University of Ulster jointly developed an MSc in Innovation Management in the Public Service. The MSc programme has developed the leadership capability of senior managers and has delivered significant transformational change in the public sector.

Bringing together international best practice from world-renowned practitioners and academics in innovation, it is the only jointly accredited North/South programme of its kind. Its key features include:

• transforming public service reform provision; 

• flexible delivery in locations North and South;

• Action Learning – bringing innovation to the workplace;

• assessment based on delivering innovative organisational change projects;

• innovative collaboration between Governments and Higher Education partners North and South.


The programme was developed by Letterkenny Institute of Technology and the University of Ulster in response to specific needs identified by the Office of An Taoiseach and the Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister. Workshops were held North and South and senior public servants were instrumental in deciding on the content, structure, and philosophy of the programme. The programme responds dynamically to emerging agendas internationally and nationally driving best practice in public service innovation.

The programme is ongoing and the targeted outcomes are:

• to promote North/South collaboration with tangible outputs in terms of public service improvements;

• to develop an all-island network of public sector innovation expertise; 

• to create opportunities for closer working relationships between senior public servants North and South; and

• to leverage international best practice via  action learning to effect sustained public service innovation.


Participants’ programme fees and associated costs are paid by their sponsoring departments. Over 150 senior public service managers, North and South, have successfully completed the programme from 2004 to date. 50 departments and agencies across the island have benefitted from the programme. Specific examples of transformational change initiatives include; public services ID card; integration of Child Health Services in the HSE; development of on-line revenue service; and the research partnership project “Collaborative networks as a resource for public service development in Ireland and Northern Ireland” (a joint initiative undertaken by two participants on behalf of governments North and South).



“The University of Ulster fully recognizes the synergies delivered to the sponsoring departments. The cross border nature of the programme impacts directly on delivering academic institutions and wider public service organisations North and South. Inviting academics and practitioners of national, EU and Global standing in public service innovation provides an added dimension to deep reflection on each administration’s approach to challenges.”

Larry McCurry, University of Ulster

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Letterkenny Institute of Technology
Industry: Public Sector
National Priority Area: Innovation in Services and Business Processes

John Andy Bonar
Head of Development
Letterkenny Institute of Technology
Port Road, Letterkenny
T: +353-74-918 6000
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