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Digital Champions Programme

Building awareness among public sector leaders of the transformative effect of digital technology


The Digital Champions Programme is designed to build skills and awareness among public sector leaders of the transformative effect of digital technology. It delivers increased knowledge and confidence to promote the digital agenda in their organisations. 

The Digital Champions Programme has a key role to play in driving the pace of change. There is now an active network of over 200 Alumni ready to work collaboratively across the Scottish public sector. 

The Programme offers senior leaders in the public sector the opportunity for interactive discussion where they can exchange ideas, discuss solutions to shared challenges, and utilise opportunities for collaborative working. It also allows participants to develop the skills they need to drive transformation.

The 2021 Programme has been redesigned in partnership with Heriot-Watt University and industry leading coaches. This unique programme will feature newly designed material from the soon-to-launch MSc in Digital Leadership (a UK first) and will bring in practitioners and executives from across the public and private sector to share practical use cases and examples.

Programme Outline

Day One: Leadership and Strategic Change
Learn how digital transformation can shape your approach to addressing strategic priorities and how to share your strategic vision effectively in your organisation and beyond 

Day Two: Digital Talent, Skills & Culture 
Learn new approaches to building a strong digital culture and explore opportunities for strengthening your talent through upskilling, reskilling and recruitment. 

Day Three: Innovation, Service Design & Collaboration 
Learn about key tech trends and explore ways that collaboration can lead to innovation, using good service design to enhance digital customer experience 

Day Four: Investment & Economic Development  
Gain an understanding of the funding and investment landscape that can help deliver digital solutions with real examples of funded initiatives that are driving economic growth

Day Five and Day Six: Leading in Complex Environments
Learn how to equip your organisation with an aligned approach to developing and guiding strategy through to actionable tasks, in line with the Scottish Approach to Service Design. You will also be challenged to consider how you will practically apply your learning from the Digital Champions Programme in your organisation.

Benefits to your organisation 

While the Digital Champions Programme directly helps the public sector leaders taking part, benefits for their organisation include:

  • Gain more understanding of how to direct transformation and reform,
  • Share and learn from colleagues across a diverse range of organisations and sectors,
  • Learn more about the national digital agenda and how this is driving change across the Scottish public sector; and,
  • Learn about the need to make sure digital public services are designed using standards that focus on user needs and tackle digital exclusion.


The programme is open to Chief Executives, Directors and other senior leaders across public sector organisations. It is aimed at those with specific responsibility for delivering change and transformation. In order to attend you will need to commit to attending all six days of the programme.

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

We are operating in a tier system in response to the Coronavirus pandemic, so we need to be flexible in our approach to delivering this programme. It is expected that the initial sessions, at least, will be held virtually. We do hope to provide the opportunity to deliver some sessions in person however this will only be possible if it is safe to do so and permitted by the guidance at the time.


If you’d like more information before registering please contact Maryanne McGoldrick at

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