Switch program

Learn how to build a culture that inspires innovation through access to executive education, industry leaders and a network of entrepreneurs.


Switch Program banner

Switch is a five-and-a-half-day program designed to build a culture of innovation in your government department, giving you the mindset, tools, evidence and confidence to switch on your innovative thinking.

This program comprises practical teaching sessions, expert panels, mentor sessions and experienced advice and support from government leaders and change makers at all levels.

Throughout the program, you will work in groups to develop an Action Learning project which will cover one of the key government priorities. You will then present your project findings on the final day to senior government officials, academia, corporates and entrepreneurs, as well as an international perspective.

You’ll have opportunities to network with like-minded people, giving you insight and knowledge that you can leverage in your workplace. Upon completion of the program, you will join the “Switchers” alumni network. This will enable you to stay connected with a group of talented, committed, public sector employees that work towards increasing the innovation capability of WA’s public sector.

Who is it for?

Switch is ideal for middle to senior leaders in local, state, federal government, and any public sector professional who is passionate about developing a culture of innovation in their workplace.

The last two cohorts consisted of innovators from Perth Children’s Hospital, Department of Finance, Department of Local Government, Department of Training and Workforce Development, Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety, Department of Transport, Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development, Department of Health, South Metropolitan Health Service, City of Cockburn, City of Armadale, City of Greater Geraldton, City of Mandurah, City of Canning, City of Albany, City of Subiaco, City of Stirling, Public Sector Commission and Curtin University.

We recommend you gain endorsement from a senior executive who can support the implementation of your ideas in the workplace.

What will I learn?

This program is a valuable personal and professional development opportunity. It will help you grow your capability in innovation and create an innovation culture within your department. It will ensure you’re able to generate new ideas that will help you respond to customer needs more effectively and add value to your communities.

By the end of the program you will have learned how to:

  • support innovation and develop an innovative culture in your workplace
  • fast-track processes using techniques that realise innovative opportunities
  • identify your strengths and areas for development
  • solve business problems using innovation methodologies and tools
  • identify and tackle barriers to innovation
  • negotiate effectively.

What does it cost?

The Switch program costs $5,000 (GST free) per delegate. This fee includes materials, mentoring, networking sessions, tuition fees, learning facilities and catering.

This cost also incorporates an academic led research project in which you and your department will receive valuable insight into the ROI from this program.

Payment options include:

  • Credit card
  • Invoice (option to be invoiced upon acceptance onto the program or on 1 July 2021)

Program dates

The Switch program is run over five-and-a-half-days:

  • Monday 8 and Tuesday 9 March (Day 1 and 2)
  • Friday 26 March (Day 3)
  • Monday 12 April (Day 4)
  • Wednesday 5 and Thursday 6 May (Day 5 and 5.5)

Program overview

Module 1: Reflect / Learn

  • Innovation defined
  • Personal entrepreneurial mindset profile
  • Blockers and barriers to innovation and entrepreneurship – self and organisation
  • Confirm group action learning project

Module 2: Context and tools

  • Innovation needs assessment
  • Innovation methodologies and tools
  • Prototyping

Module 3: Take action

  • Infrastructure and technical support
  • Change management
  • Risk taking and embracing failure

Module 4: Lead

  • Influencing and leadership
  • Negotiation and difficult conversations
  • Story telling
  • Presenting

Module 5: Apply

  • Rapid fire ideation of project
  • Lessons learnt

Module 6: Action Learning Presentations

  • Presenting action learning projects
  • Celebration

Joint research project

When you join the Switch program, your organisation or department has the opportunity to be part of a research project that tracks your innovation culture journey and training effectiveness.

Early data from the 2019 Switch research project indicates that the Switch cohort has increased their innovation performance rating and their ability to effectively assess the feasibility of innovative ideas at work. Switch participants also gain a greater level of trust amongst their colleagues for their capability to innovate.

Program facilitators

The program features experts from Curtin University and high-level facilitators from industry and government:

  • Associate Professor Dorothy Wardale – Deputy MBA Director, Curtin Business School
  • Mr Brad Birt – Director – Learning Partnerships, Curtin University
  • Associate Professor Amy Tian – School of Management, Curtin Business School

Read more about the program facilitators.

Receive Curtin academic credit through Switch

Upon completion of the Switch Program and related assessments, delegates will receive 25 credit points* (equivalent of 1 unit) in the Curtin MBA or the Curtin Masters of Human Resources

Apply for Switch 2021

If you are interested in attending our 2021 Switch program, please complete the expression of interest form. Applications close on Friday 26 February 2021.

Payment options include:

  • Credit card
  • Invoice (option to be invoiced upon acceptance onto the program or on 1st July 2021)

Please contact us if you have any further questions about the program:
Telephone: +61 8 9266 4555
E-mail: execed@curtin.edu.au

Past participant testimonials

Curtin, through its Switch Program, is undertaking a very important role in WA – it is developing a network of innovators through an academic lens, sprinkled with lots of real life examples of recent innovation from some of the best leaders and innovators WA has to offer. Using current state government strategies as case studies is logical and makes absolute sense. I believe and hope that this course and its graduates are building the momentum to normalise innovation in government in WA.

Samantha Seymour-Eyles

Manager Corporate Communications | Corporate Communications Services

City of Cockburn

Completing the 2019 Switch Program was a valuable learning experience that provided me with new tools and knowledge to utilise in my current role as innovation manager at Dept of Finance.  The Program was a good balance of practical and academic sessions.  It was professionally organised and presented and provided a great opportunity to connect and collaborate with local and state government people, further building a strong innovation ecosystem in WA.

Mary Manov

Manager Innovation and Research, Optima Centre

As a participant of the inaugural Switch program, I was very impressed with the amount of learning that took place in a relatively short amount of time. I appreciated the style of teaching and the active participation. It was a great opportunity to work with like-minded people from across a range of local and state government departments – many of whom I would never have had the opportunity to work with outside of this program.

Innovation is not typically pursued in roles like mine, where there is a lot of regulation focus. However, I would encourage anyone in any role to take part in Switch as it really does switch on your innovation and open up opportunities, as I have already seen since taking part.

Scott Reitsema

Manager Public Health and Safety, City of Albany