Our positions

Public Digital is guided by 10 positions. 

In addition with our ethics review process, they help us decide who we partner with, and under what conditions.  

They were last updated in 2023, and will be updated again. 

1. Public purpose defines us and our work.

We want to do work that benefits the world and improves lives. We’re not interested in projects that are simply about selling more unsustainable goods, or for the financial benefit of a small number of already-wealthy individuals. We want to work on things that matter, because they help ordinary people.

2. Working at scale is the best way to make that positive difference.

We work with presidents, prime ministers and CEOs because they influence large budgets and large organisations. Focusing on the biggest problems will have the greatest impact for the largest number of people.

3. Optimism counts in an era where pessimism is prevalent.

We have worked with too many good people, in too many different parts of the world, to see the world any other way. We believe that most people want to do the best work that they can, to improve the lives of as many people as possible.

4. Internet-era ways of working are the key to successful transformation.

They are often not that hard to implement, if they have support and explicit encouragement from the people at the very top. Most teams know what they need to do in order to change; what they lack is permission to get on with it.

5. Community and consensus were the values that shaped the internet from its earliest days, and we think they matter.

We don’t blindly follow the high-paid person’s opinion.

6. Teams are the fundamental unit of delivery.

If you want your organisation to deliver, and to truly transform itself for the internet era, you should start funding teams instead of projects.

7. The best teams are diverse teams

We value and encourage diversity. We recognise that the Public Digital team is still not diverse enough, and we’re striving to improve that.

8. Honesty is a valuable asset.

We tell our clients what they need to hear, even if it’s not necessarily good news, or news they want to hear. Even when it’s not in our best interest to tell them. We believe our clients benefit from openness and candour.

9. Openness is something all organisations should value and practice.

We’re as open as we can be without breaking client confidentiality. We believe that making things open makes them better.

10. We’re pragmatists; we know not everything can be perfect, all of the time.

We know that circumstances and events can sometimes interfere with the best-laid plans. We accept that the real world sometimes gets in the way; that’s why we advocate agile ways of working.

PD team at work

Introducing the Public Digital positions

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Ways of working on a list

Internet-era ways of working

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A picture showing various copies of Public Digital's book

Digital Transformation At Scale

Our guide to building a digital institution and applying internet-era ways of working to meet people's raised expectations.

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