Jen Manuel

Head of User Research - UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA)

Human-Centred Design in Complex Government Policy and Services

The Digital, Data and Technology profession within Civil Service is where the majority of human-centred designers find themselves. The government Service Standards enable a whole profession of people to design better, more inclusive digital services, but what if the design needed is in the policy space? What if it is a non-digital or complex web of services? What can we do when there are inevitable practical constraints placed on projects?

In this talk, Jen will reflect on her experience embedding human-centred design within policy, delivery and non-digital services, drawing on the use of Service Standards to help embed this culture, and reflecting on the complexity of large reform and systems change programmes.

About the speaker:

Jen is Head of User Research at UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA), leading the development of user research and user-centred design practices in the organisation. Prior to joining UKHSA, Jen set up and led user-centred policy and systems design teams in the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC). She set up and led user-centred policy design and future system design in planning reform, a complex legislative programme, and in Homes for Ukraine and wider refugee resettlement policy. Jen joined Civil Service after completing her PhD in Digital Civics, focused on human-centred policymaking and human-computer interaction, bringing her academic action research experience into government. Jen is from the North East of England and lives in Sunderland.