Selection Criteria

Throughout each cycle for the Innovations in American Government Award, each applicant is evaluated according to the following criteria:

  • Its novelty, the degree to which the program or initiative demonstrates a leap in creativity
    • Does the program or initiative represent a fundamental change in the governance, management, direction, or policy approach of a particular jurisdiction?
    • Does the program or initiative represent a significant improvement in the process by which a service is delivered?
    • Does the program or initiative introduce a substantially new technology or service concept?
  • Its effectiveness, the degree to which the program or initiative has achieved tangible results
    • Does the program or initiative respond to the needs of a well-defined group of clients?
    • Does the program or initiative demonstrate its effectiveness in meeting its stated goals and objectives quantitatively and qualitatively?
    • Does the program or initiative produce unanticipated benefits for its clients?
    • Does the program or initiative present evidence of already completed, independent evaluation?
  • Its significance, the degree to which the program or initiative successfully addresses an important problem of public concern
    • To what degree does the program or initiative address a problem of national import and scope?
    • To what degree does the program or initiative make substantial progress in diminishing the problem within its jurisdiction?
    • To what degree does the program or initiative change the organizational culture or the traditional approach to management or problem solving?
  • Its transferability, the degree to which the program or initiative, or aspects of it, shows promise of inspiring successful replication by other governmental entities
    • To what extent can this program or initiative be replicated in other jurisdictions?
    • To what extent can this program or initiative serve as a model that other jurisdictions will seek to replicate?
    • To what extent are program or initiative components, concepts, principles, or insights transferable to other disciplines or policy areas?
  • Additional criteria related to the 2018 theme can be found here.