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This tool is designed to support reflection and strategy refinement when working on complex projects that involve people working across organizational, sector or policy fields. It is consistent with other ‘canvases’ that help to focus attention on key issues related to business and social enterprise start-up.

In change initiatives that involve public organizations, there are often many stakeholders with shared responsibilities and resources. Oftentimes, implementation resources need to be developed to enable the whole system in navigating and creating change. Yet the people involved occupy roles in distinct organizations. To work effectively and efficiently (and have more fun!), it is important for these people to align their purpose, develop shared language, build shared understanding of purpose and value creation. It is important they consider how program participant voice can be brought to refining strategy and guiding wise actions. This process itself helps to assure that public value – developed through democratic engagement – is in fact created by the project. Until those involved in the project can come to these shared understandings, it is difficult to anticipate the resources needed to improve project implementation across the larger system.

While this tool can be used by individuals and small work teams, we have also found good success in using it with larger, cross-sector and multi-level groups working in collaboration within a larger System.


  1. Gather key stakeholders and the following materials: large wall template of the Public Value Implementation Canvas, markers, colored post-it notes, paper versions of Public Value Implementation Canvas. 
  2. Hand out a printed template to each participant.
  3. Introduce the whole group to the template via the large wall template and walk them through the pieces on the template, introducing them to the language and what that means as it pertains to the project you are working on.
  4. Let participants know through the process, they will have individual time to reflect, small group time to identify key insights and share out through a final large group “harvest process” at the end.
  5. Take the next 20-30 minutes individually to reflect on and complete the template to the best of your abilities from your perspective and expertise.
  6.  After that, break into small groups of 3- 4 people (or 2-3 if you have a smaller group) and gather your key insights and reflections onto color coded post-it notes (color categories can share insights back from the perspective of State, County, Frontline, Participant or whatever other roles feel right to the group that is in the room).
  7. Large group discussion and reflection of what you are seeing and noticing now.
  8.  Have a conversation that closes out with each person sharing their commitment and clarity of the 1 – 2 next step(s) they are willing to make to help move the project forward.


  • The Canvas has a lot of material to cover in a single sitting. Use of this tool then can be broken up over multiple sessions as appropriate. 
  • It can be helpful to begin meetings with group agreements or procedures for resolving conflicts before engaging in this sort of facilitated discussion that may elicit a wide range of responses. 


  • Bennett, A., Boone, K., & Sandfort, J. (n.d.). Public Value Implementation Canvas (PVIC) . Future Services Institute, Humphrey School of Public Affairs at University of Minnesota.

Downloads & Links

Public Value Implementation Canvas Process
Public Value Implementation Canvas Template
Public Value Implementation Canvas - Certificate Program Worksheet
Public Value Implementation Canvas - Excel Worksheet
Public Value Implementation Canvas - Mural