Contributing to evidence-based Policy making <br />Ranjitha Puskur, ILRI<br />Berhanu Adenew, Ethiopian Economic Associati...
Policy making process in Ethiopia <br />Policy priorities are led by the government’s visions<br />agriculture and rural c...
Policy making process and constraints <br />Policy making process is less known for taking evidence from grassroots or res...
Relevant policies …..<br />policies have been adopted , adapted and under implementation over the last two decades <br />g...
The ODI RAPID Framework(Court and Young 2003)<br />The Context – political, social and economic structures, political proc...
Political Context: Key Areas<br />The macro political context (democracy, governance, media freedom; academic freedom) <br...
Evidence: Relevance and credibility<br />Key factor – did it provide a solution to a problem? <br />Relevance:<br />Topica...
Links: Feedback and Networks<br />Feedback processes often prominent in successful cases<br />Trust & legitimacy<br />Netw...
Policy Entrepreneurs<br />Simon Maxwell - ODI<br />Storytellers<br />Networkers<br />Engineers<br />Fixers<br />
So what do we need to do? <br /><ul><li>Get to know the policymakers.
Identify friends and foes.
Prepare for policy opportunities.
Look out for policy windows.
Work with them – seek commissions
Strategic opportunism – prepare for known events + resources for others
Who are the policymakers?
Is there demand for ideas?
What is the policy process?
Establish credibility
Provide practical solutions
Establish legitimacy.
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Contributing to evidence-based policy making

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Presented by Ranjitha Puskur and Berhanu Adenew at the Nile Basin Development Challenge Science and Reflection Workshop, Addis Ababa, 4-6 May 2011.

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  • Not a linear processA chaos of purposes and accidents
  • Context: Demand &amp; ContestationThe degree of demand and contestation matter greatly. Demand:Policymaker demand: (eg – initiating a review)Societal demand: (focus on problems)Contestation: Ideology / NarrativeVested Interests In virtually all cases: Policy uptake = demand – contestationEvidence can change the policy narrative(Need to think about how they can work to increase demand and reduce contestation.)
  • Inspire and informone of the principal ways that practitioners, bureaucrats and policy-makers articulate and make sense of complex realities is through simplified stories or scenarios. powerful stories which help us to get over to policy-makers what the problem is and what the solution might be. Networkers – policy making happens within a small group of people ho know each other and interact – within the tent or outside the tent – Engineers – street level bureaucracy –implementation gap – work not just with policy makers, but also the implementers - being engaged on the ground and not just sitting in a laboratory. Researchers need to become practically involved in testing their ideas if they expect policy makers to heed their recommendations.Fixers – when to make your pitch and whom , based on a sound understanding of the policy processWe use them one or more at different timesNot either or – need all skills – can’t be adept at all – need a team with such skills
  • Contributing to evidence-based policy making

    1. 1. Contributing to evidence-based Policy making <br />Ranjitha Puskur, ILRI<br />Berhanu Adenew, Ethiopian Economic Association<br />Nile Basin Development ChallengeScience and Reflection WorkshopAddis Ababa, 4-6 May 2011<br />
    2. 2. Policy making process in Ethiopia <br />Policy priorities are led by the government’s visions<br />agriculture and rural centred development (ADLI)<br />Poverty reduction and food security<br />Commercialization, export promotion<br />The Ministry of Finance and Economic Development (MoFED) formulates macro policies while line ministries formulate sectoral policies. <br />Policy making in Ethiopia is a government’s domain (less space for private sector, CSOs/ NGOs, farmers institutions);<br />Participation has been largely lacking, but gradually emerging<br />
    3. 3. Policy making process and constraints <br />Policy making process is less known for taking evidence from grassroots or research and (through M&E)<br />Lack of adequate and current datasets<br />Lack of adequate analytical skills, models and knowledge<br />Lack of independence in policy analysis, i.e., bias towards promoting only government or donors’ interest <br />Lack of informed debate among the various stakeholders<br />Weak networking between the different stakeholders <br />
    4. 4. Relevant policies …..<br />policies have been adopted , adapted and under implementation over the last two decades <br />government intervenes in the areas of its comparative advantage<br />policy elements/components relevant to RMS and water management spread over a number of policies<br />
    5. 5. The ODI RAPID Framework(Court and Young 2003)<br />The Context – political, social and economic structures, political processes, institutional pressures, incremental vs radical change etc.<br />External Influences <br />Geopolitical, economic and cultural influences; <br />donor policies, etc<br />The Links between policy<br />and research communities – networks, relationships, power, competing discourses, trust, knowledge etc.<br />The Evidence – credibility, the degree it challenges received wisdom, research approaches and methodology, simplicity of the message, how it is packaged etc<br />
    6. 6. Political Context: Key Areas<br />The macro political context (democracy, governance, media freedom; academic freedom) <br />The sector / issue process (Policy uptake = demand – contestation) [NB Demand: political and societal]<br />How policymakers think (narratives & policy streams)<br />Policy implementation and practice (bureaucracies, incentives, street level, room for manoeuvre, participatory approaches)<br />Decisive moments in the policy process (policy processes, votes, policy windows and crises)<br />(Court and Young 2003)<br />
    7. 7. Evidence: Relevance and credibility<br />Key factor – did it provide a solution to a problem? <br />Relevance:<br />Topical relevance – What to do? <br />Operational usefulness – How to do it? :<br />Credibility: <br />Research approach<br />Of researcher > of evidence itself<br />Strenuous advocacy efforts are often needed<br />Communication<br />(Court and Young 2003)<br />
    8. 8. Links: Feedback and Networks<br />Feedback processes often prominent in successful cases<br />Trust & legitimacy<br />Networks:<br />Epistemic communities – knowledge-based experts and claim possession of policy relevant knowledge<br />Policy networks – few actors, close working relations, development and delivery of policies<br />Advocacy coalitions – develop stronger public image, bring together diverse resources and ideas<br />The role of individuals: connectors, mavens and salesmen<br />(Court and Young 2003)<br />
    9. 9. Policy Entrepreneurs<br />Simon Maxwell - ODI<br />Storytellers<br />Networkers<br />Engineers<br />Fixers<br />
    10. 10. So what do we need to do? <br /><ul><li>Get to know the policymakers.
    11. 11. Identify friends and foes.
    12. 12. Prepare for policy opportunities.
    13. 13. Look out for policy windows.
    14. 14. Work with them – seek commissions
    15. 15. Strategic opportunism – prepare for known events + resources for others
    16. 16. Who are the policymakers?
    17. 17. Is there demand for ideas?
    18. 18. What is the policy process?
    19. 19. Establish credibility
    20. 20. Provide practical solutions
    21. 21. Establish legitimacy.
    22. 22. Present clear options
    23. 23. Use familiar narratives.
    24. 24. Build a reputation
    25. 25. Action-research
    26. 26. Pilot projects to generate legitimacy
    27. 27. Good communication
    28. 28. What is the current theory?
    29. 29. What are the narratives?
    30. 30. How divergent is it?
    31. 31. Get to know the others
    32. 32. Work through existing networks.
    33. 33. Build coalitions.
    34. 34. Build new policy networks.
    35. 35. Build partnerships.
    36. 36. Identify key networkers, mavens and salesmen.
    37. 37. Use informal contacts
    38. 38. Who are the stakeholders?
    39. 39. What networks exist?
    40. 40. Who are the connectors, mavens and salesmen?</li></ul>(Court and Young 2003)<br />
    41. 41. Communication<br />Science often explains the familiar in terms of the unfamiliar – Lewis Wolpert<br />researchers are often not good at communicating what they know, and what they think should happen, to the people who make the decisions <br />speak naively of policy issues, demonstrate little or no awareness of current policy<br />over-technical, and often need drastic editing to make the outputs readable and understandable to key players<br />
    42. 42. Communication<br />Research can only affect policy in a significant way if it is appropriately communicated<br />Research results need to be well understood by key stakeholders and have to reach them before decisions have been taken<br />Multiple approaches need to be pursued<br />Communications to be pursued as a continuous activity between key stakeholder groups and researchers<br />
    43. 43. Communication<br />Clear strategy<br />Intensive efforts - resources<br />Packaging<br />Interactive<br />Multiple approaches<br />Seeing is believing<br />
    44. 44. Know your messages<br />Context, location and time specific messages<br />Some broad-themed messages<br />Know your audience<br />Primary - organizations with which the project deals directly and presumably will have mandates to scale-up and scale-out the outcomes of the project<br />Secondary - entities and communities the project usually reaches through the facilitation of the primary audience members<br />
    45. 45. A continual dialogue through a variety of communications vehicles – stickiness factor<br />Personal dialogues with national policy makers<br />Engagement with mass media to influence policy making via public opinion and its shapers<br />
    46. 46. Communications spectrum<br />Printed material<br />Project Brochure<br />Project Newsletter<br />Working Paper Series<br />Success Stories Series<br />Commodities Sheets<br />Regular articles (a weekly or monthly column) in local newspapers <br />
    47. 47. Communications spectrum<br />Electronic Media<br />Project website<br />e-Newsletter<br />Success clips - video production<br />Regular program on national or regional radio<br />Public service announcements (Regular 1, 2, or 3 minute radio or TV spots that communicate a single message repeatedly – something like an advert with a twist)<br />
    48. 48. Communications spectrum<br />Events<br />Stakeholder Conferences<br />Agricultural Technology Workshops<br />Board Meetings<br />Executive Group Meetings<br />Research Management Group<br />Sponsorship of Annual Awards for Best Performing Woredas, Farmers, Private Sector<br />Sponsoring a permanent showcase (Agricultural Hall of Fame)<br />
    49. 49. Communications spectrum<br />Government Relations<br />Informal One-to-one Meetings<br />Sponsorship of portions of targeted government events, meetings<br />
    50. 50. How do we ensure our evidence is credible, relevant. practical and operationally useful?<br />How and what kind of feedback processes and networks should we develop to communicate our messages?<br />What kind of communication vehicles would be most appropriate for communicating research to policy makers in the Ethiopian NBDC context?<br />How do we go about understanding policy better? Are we aware of key decision moments?<br />
    51. 51. Thank you <br />

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