UCL Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose


Designing and implementing mission-oriented policies: Tools and resources from the field

Authored by Anna Goulden and Professor Rainer Kattel

Policy toolkit; UCL IIPP

16 February 2024

Download the report 

UCL Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose, policy report no. 2024/01


  • Anna Goulden | Research and Policy Analyst, UCL Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose (IIPP)
  • Rainer Kattel | Deputy Director and Professor of Innovation and Public Governance, UCL Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose (IIPP)


Goulden, A., Kattel, R. (2024). Designing and implementing mission-oriented policies: Tools and resources from the field. UCL Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose, Policy Report 2024/01. Available at: https://www.ucl.ac.uk/bartlett/public-purpose/publications/2024/feb/designing-and-implementing-mission-oriented-policies

About this report

This policy report investigates the tools and resources used globally by practitioners to support them in design, implementation or evaluation of mission-oriented policies. In recent years, ‘policy toolkits’ (often called ‘playbooks’, ‘guides’, ‘resource libraries’ or similar) have become increasingly widespread in policy communities. In the context of policy approaches such as mission-oriented innovation, toolkits and many tools can be a means of bridging the gap between theory and practice by providing practitioners with tangible resources to support them in their work. As part of this work, IIPP engaged with practitioners in its Mission-Oriented Innovation Network (MOIN) to discuss cases of mission-oriented policy tools and toolkits developed in the field – and current and future needs for tool development. 

The work has consisted of three strands, which will be explored in this report:

  • Mapping the external environment: what does the current landscape of policy toolkits and resources look like, particularly for mission-oriented innovation?
  • Understanding practitioner needs: what are the operational contexts, use cases and needs of practitioners in terms of tools?
  • Scoping future priorities: what is the role of IIPP in the field and how is it developing?

The first section of this report, ‘Policy toolkits: The current landscape,’ looks at some key patterns, features and typologies of toolkits produced among and for policy communities. The second section, ‘Mission-oriented policy toolkits,’ focuses on the development and application of toolkits specifically designed to support mission-oriented policies, and explore some key examples from the field. The third section, ‘Lessons from practice: tools for missions,’ shares insights on the operational contexts, current practices and future needs of practitioners using tools and resources, in various forms, to support the design and implementation of mission-oriented approaches on the ground. Finally, the fourth section concludes with some reflections on what this analysis can teach us about the development of such resources in the context of contemporary mission-oriented policy practice.