The Partnership for Public Service stated in a recent report that it is supporting the desire of federal employees to innovate and the degree to which leaders can promote innovation within their teams.

On its second year, the Masters of Science in Leadership offered by Olin Business School at Washington University in partnership with the Brookings Institution, aims to help U.S. government employees think strategically about opportunities for innovation.

We have a new way to think about how to undertake innovation in the government. Our master’s degree represents a new approach for public servants to help them innovate within the context of the government.” –  Jackson A. Nickerson PhD director of Brookings-Olin and Brookings Non resident Senior Fellow in Government Studies

The course is designed to develop leaders for service as senior federal executives and combines the business acumen and knowledge of Olin Business School faculty with the institution’s research and policy expertise. The program is designed to prepare senior federal executives for leadership positions.

It is a non-cohort based system where students can take classes and courses in any sequence.

In terms of evaluation, the test following the program is that students have six months to apply what they have learned and reduce it to practice, writing a short paper about its application and what went well and  did not go so well.

Nickerson believes the program provides strong value for government employees.

“At the end of the day, we offer great return on investment in terms of content. What we teach is not only actionable but also impactful,” says Nickerson.

Most courses are offered at Brookings in Washington, D.C., and the majority are taught by senior Olin professors.

Upon completion of the program, graduates will be assigned in the Office of Personnel Management’s Executive Core Qualifications (ECQs), which form the basis for promotion to Senior Executive Service (SES) membership.