What they share was a desire to make change, and lead from a place of idealistic conviction. Both admit to a gap between those ideals and eventual reality. And arguably both became victims of the political reaction to their ideals.
Properly used, behavioural science tools and insights, like nudge policies, can empower us. But not just us as individuals—large organizations like government could also use similar tools to improve their own operations.
Government is far from perfect, but by many measures Canada is a successful country that ranks very highly across the world in terms of relevant governance measures. Improvements can be made, but only if short-term political calculations are resisted.
Even in the context of the size voters want, big or small, we can still ask about effectiveness. Because like any other organization, there may be an optimal size for government for maximum efficiency and output.
In this five-part series, Amanda Lang conducts in-depth interviews with experts and former policymakers, and puts it all in perspective for the average Canadian.