7.3KPIs in function of policy objectives in Flanders: short history and new conceptual framework by VARIO

By Annelies Wastyn, Veerle Linseele and Danielle Raspoet (Flemish Advisory Council for Innovation and Enterprise, VARIO)

In its memorandum 2019-2024 ‘Forging ahead. Aim: top 5 knowledge regions’ (December 2018) VARIO asks the Flemish Government to speed up the development of an overarching long-term vision on innovation and to translate this vision into a strategy with specific objectives. The vision and strategy must be future-proof and therefore go beyond one legislature (time span of at least 10 years). Output parameters and KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) are powerful tools to achieve objectives because they are often linked to financing. VARIO therefore recommends setting up output parameters and KPIs in a smart way, in function of policy objectives.

On the 1st of March 2019, VARIO received a request from Philippe Muyters, Flemish Minister for Innovation and Economy at that time, to "set up a qualitative and measurable set of output parameters and KPIs for the next Flemish Government, which express the Flemish ambition to be one of the European leaders in innovation".

In response to this request for advice, VARIO proceeded in two steps. The first step was the Advisory Report 7 'Conceptual framework for setting up KPIs in function of policy objectives' published in May 2019 together with an accompanying analysis report. The report provides a conceptual framework as well as a number of specific points of attention and recommendations. In addition, the importance of monitoring, systemic evaluations and impact analyses to follow up on whether the intended objectives are being achieved is also discussed.

This dossier summarizes the VARIO Advisory Report 7 and the analysis report. In addition, VARIO is working on a qualitative set of indicators for the policy domain EWI (Economie, Wetenschap en Innovatie; Economy, Science and Innovation), which will enable the Flemish Government to monitor and evaluate its performance. The VARIO memorandum 2019-2024 will serve as a basis for this. The outcome of this second step, in the form of a new Advisory Report, is foreseen for October 2019.

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