The more complex and uncertain a policy issue is, the more useful it is to approach it through humility
The review ’Humble Government’ describes how a humble approach to policy-making can help the Government in building truly long-term policy-making when dealing with wicked problems. The review, conducted by Demos Helsinki and Professor Charles F. Sabel, is part of the Steering2020 project.
For the government to formulate policies that address the most pressing questions of the 21st century, it must first address the structural and cultural problems of its policy-making processes. Solving wicked problems requires policy-making that moves away from the illusion of top-down steering into a networked model.
The aim has been to build a model on some of the strengths of the Finnish governance system. “Examples like the government’s response to COVID-19 and one of the greatest Finnish success stories – the education system – have been successful because they follow the conditions of humble policy-making. The more complex and uncertain a policy issue is, the more useful it is to approach it through humility”, Silva Mertsola from Demos Helsinki describes.
This report presents an ideal model for how a humble approach could be applied in the Finnish context and an analysis of what the first steps towards an increasingly humble approach could be.
For further inquiries:
Consultant Silva Mertsola, Demos Helsinki, firstname.lastname@example.org
Chairperson of the steering group, Financial Counsellor/Head of Unit Katju Holkeri, Ministry of Finance email@example.com