Policy hack
Nova Scotia’s public policy Case Competition

About Policy Hack

Policy Hack is a collaborative, grassroots intergovernmental case competition whereby federal, provincial, and municipal employees in Nova Scotia come together to create innovative solutions to complex policy issues currently impacting Nova Scotians. This is Policy Hack Nova Scotia's 4th year of operation.

  • For Participants: Learn new skills and gain policy experience, all while contributing creative ideas to real policy changes.

  • For Departments: The competition gives government departments an opportunity to have a group of ambitious, diverse, and neutral individuals develop a policy analysis and propose a solution for their intractable challenge.

  • Networking: This initiative offers a unique professional development experience where public servants gain networking experience and make connections with employees and senior leaders through collaboration.


  • March 14, 2019: Pre-Launch Networking Mixer with a keynote address by Laura Lee Langley – Clerk of the Executive Council. Four Points by Sheraton Halifax 3:00-4:30pm

  • April 10, 2019: Registration closes

  • April 25, 2019: LAUNCH DAY at the Canada School of Public Service, including the first two professional development sessions

  • May 8, 2019: EXPLORING POLICY ACROSS ORGANIZATIONS 12:00pm to 1:30pm at the Halifax Central Library

  • May 23, 2019: STRUCTURING THE KNOWN: IMPROVISATION AND QUICK THINKING IN THE WORKPLACE 12:00pm to 1:30pm at the Canada School of Public Service

  • May 30, 2019: BRANDING YOUR PUBLIC SECTOR EXPERIENCE 12:00pm to 1:30pm at the Halifax Central Library

  • June 20, 2019: COMPETITION DAY at the Kenneth C. Rowe Management Building, Dalhousie University

The professional development workshops for participants of Policy Hack are:

  • Presenting to Senior Management –  Nova Scotia Executive Council

  • Teamwork and Collaboration – Dr. Jenny Beachler

  • Exploring Policy Across Organizations – Panel

  • Improvisation & Quick Thinking in the Workplace – Andrew Noseworthy

  • Branding Your Public Sector Experience – Laura Richardson

Link to GCCollab page: https://gccollab.ca/groups/profile/1559157/ennova-scotia-policy-hackfr

Communications info: PolicyHack@NovaScotia.ca

2019 policy hack cases

  1. Increasing Student Recruitment in the Federal Public Service: How can the federal public service attract and recruit more students into the workforce?

  2. Affordable Child Care: How much should Nova Scotia families pay for high quality regulated childcare?

  3. Public Servants in Defence: Beyond One Career Choice: How can we inform and attract Canadians to Defence as an employer of civilians and military alike?

  4. Regulatory Modernization: How can HRM develop a consistent approach to considering both regulatory and non-regulatory options (a regulatory modernization lens) to solve an issue?

  5. Elevating Safety: Should Nova Scotia implement the Maintenance Control Program in its entirety?

  6. Communicating Engagement Opportunities: How might we improve Government of Canada data collection and quality?

  7. Serving Children with Disabilities In Their Homes: How does Department of Community Services most effectively support high needs children successfully in their homes?

  8. Community Wellbeing: How can we accurately measure the wellbeing of communities in order to better inform policy, programming, and resource allocation?

  9. Virtual Networking: How can we be more successful in fostering an environment where employees can be fully engaged and able to network in their virtual work and teams, taking full advantage of the tools at our disposal?

  10. Alternative Options for Financial Services: How might government encourage alternative financing/banking options in low income and other marginalized communities and/or discourage use of payday lending and other fringe financial institutions in cases where alternative options may be viable?