This site is in beta and a work in progress


This site is in beta and a work in progress

State of New Jersey

Projects + Initiatives

The Office of Innovation works in partnership with the Governor’s office and State agencies to create innovative policies and technologies that address complex public problems, including the following select projects.


SmarterNJ is an open government platform for public engagement on a wide variety of policy issues with the residents of New Jersey. To make policies that work, we need to tap the State’s most valuable assets: the intelligence, expertise, and know-how of its people. That's why the SmarterNJ initiative is focused on creating new and innovative ways for the public to contribute meaningfully to the policymaking process.

Once fully operational, the platform will enable the public to submit ideas for government-led prize-backed challenges, contribute their thoughts and insights regarding policy issues and proposals, and provide feedback on the implementation of policy and programs to ensure that public services are working as intended.

The first project to launch under the SmarterNJ initiative is the Innovation ENJINE Challenge - an open innovation challenge that leveraged the hard-earned knowledge of state employees to make government more effective and efficient.

Innovation Skills Accelerator

The New Jersey Innovation Skills Accelerator is a free, online program to train public officials to leverage new technology and data to drive innovation in their day-to-day work, and tap into the intelligence and expertise of residents of the Garden State. The program includes video instruction, interviews with leading public sector innovators from around the world, readings, and self-assessments to help public entrepreneurs work differently. Course content spans an array of subject areas, such as introductions to new technologies like blockchain and big data analytics, utilizing modern methodologies such as user-centered design and open innovation, and employing experimental design approaches.

In addition to being made freely available to all State government employees, the Innovation Skills Accelerator's online content is also publicly accessible, with the hope that county and local governments across the Garden State - as well as states and municipalities across the country and around the world - will also find the trainings helpful.

Business First Stop

The Business First Stop initiative was developed to address Governor Murphy’s goal of making government work more effectively to enable inclusive business growth, and is a strategic component of the Governor’s Stronger and Fairer Economic Plan. Developed in partnership with the Department of State's Business Action Center and the Economic Development Authority, this initiative is intended to simplify and streamline access to the information, resources, and services that aspiring entrepreneurs and business owners need to start, operate, and grow their business in the Garden State.

Designed as a multi-phase initiative, in the long-term, Business First Stop will: (1) create centralized digital resources that enable businesses to access information pertaining to State requirements and services that are relevant to them; (2) transition paper-based filings to a digital format and streamline processes for businesses to meet mandated regulatory and operational requirements; and (3) identify key modernizations of policy, law, and operations that, if implemented, would result in more efficient and effective interactions between businesses and the State.

As part of this initiative, a beta version of the new website has been released and is currently being tested with users.

New Jersey Career Network

The NJ Career Network is an initiative developed in partnership with the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development and the John J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development at Rutgers University to create 21st century in-person services and digital tools to enable job seekers, students, and career changers to prepare for, identify, and obtain jobs.

Over time, the New Jersey Career Network will grow to incorporate a modern, mobile-responsive website, which will connect job-seekers to career services and digital tools such as virtual coaching, lifelong learning, and career management tools, as well as an expert system to match job seekers and other users to the programs and services most relevant to them based on where they are in their job search journey.

Future of Work Task Force

The Future of Work Task Force, which is chaired by Chief Innovation Officer Beth Simone Noveck, was formed in October, 2018 with Governor Phil Murphy's signing of Executive Order 41. Generally, the Task Force is charged with studying how technological innovation will impact the development of jobs and New Jersey’s economy.

The specific scope of the Task Force's planned work will include: (1) determining which technologies will impact work in New Jersey, and in particular which industries and sectors will be affected and to what extent; (2) identifying the groups of residents in New Jersey likely to be most affected by these changes and how effects will vary based on differing demographics, including gender, race, income, location, and education; (3) exploring the ways in which the same innovative technologies might improve workplace conditions, create different jobs, and grow the State’s economy; and, (4) devising innovative, impactful, and cost-effective strategies for what State government, universities, private corporations, non-profits, and individuals can do to prepare for these changes and ensure a prosperous and equitable future.

Human-Centered Web Design

The Office of Innovation works with State departments and agencies to improve public-facing, web-based products that can serve residents more effectively. For example, the Office of Innovation recently provided the Motor Vehicle Commission with technical and project management support to publish a newly redesigned version of the Commission's website on May 6, 2019. The purpose of the redesign was to improve the user experience of the website, and to simplify and streamline processes ahead of significant upcoming projects, including the rollout of REAL ID and the modernization of other MVC systems.

The website redesign was conceived as a human-centered design project, using data and user testing to streamline the content and simplify New Jersey drivers’ interactions with the site.

Innovation ENJINE Challenge

The Innovation ENJINE is an open innovation challenge that leverages the hard-earned knowledge of state employees to make government more effective and efficient. As part of our Administration's commitment to bring New Jersey government into the 21st century and make the Garden State a leader in innovation, the Innovation ENJINE Challenge was designed to tap into the State’s greatest asset - its people. Recognizing that state employees have some of the best perspectives of the challenges we face, and the knowledge, expertise, and insights we need to solve those challenges, the Innovation ENJINE Challenge sought ideas from State employees to improve state government.

In the first round, employees participated by submitting their own ideas and voting on one another’s submissions. The twenty most impactful and implementable short proposals, as rated by employees, advanced to Stage Two. In round two, employees were invited to compete - either as individuals or in teams - to craft a plan for how to implement one of those twenty winning ideas.

Innovation, Open Governance + Open Data Policy

The Office of Innovation collaborates with the Governor's Office, State agencies, and other public sector stakeholders to advance the development and implementation of policy in the State of New Jersey. By leveraging an approach that is data-driven, human-centered, inclusionary, and open, the Office of Innovation is able to provide key stakeholders with an innovative outlook on policy design and delivery. Our work has spanned issue areas such as economic development, technology governance, open data, open governance, autonomous vehicles, broadband, workforce development, and more.