This article explores the institutionalization process—through a specific organizational setting—of public policy design. Our analysis is based on the empirical study of three apparatuses of public innovation at three different administrative scales in France (national state, region, department). Beyond similar characteristics of emergence, we show that the anchoring, development, and legitimacy of these IOTs (Innovation-Oriented Teams) largely depend on organizational tactics. Above all, their institutionalization relies on a process of “metabolization” of design methods that is specific to each IOT and that allows them to enroll key actors such as elected representatives and managers. We conclude by highlighting the pragmatic and careful aspects of their strategy—and their plastic approach to design—that enables them to move forward to a hybridization of public bureaucracies.
- public innovation