Innovations in Making Evidence Useful – IPPO Event Series
From September 2023, IPPO will begin a series of public, online events on new methods for mobilising evidence for greatest impact, to guide researchers, policymakers and intermediaries.
Details for every session will be updated here. Please also sign up to our newsletter to get further insight into all of our work.
This discussion will explore how new tools are improving our ability to synthesise evidence and more clearly connect research evidence with public policy outcomes.
Our speakers are:
- Basil Mahfouz, a PhD student in UCL Department of Science, Technology, Engineering and Public Policy (STEaPP), who is looking at novel ways to map the links between research supply and demand by looking at the dynamics of the spread of research.
- Tom Wilkinson, Chief Data Officer in the Scottish Government, a specialist in the field of collective intelligence, who is building tools to help networks of people and computers make better decisions than any one individual.
- James Thomes, deputy director of the EPPI Centre, a leading centre of excellence for research synthesis and its methodology.
- Boaz Kwakkel, Cisco Associate System Engineer, who will be discussing automatic policy paper generation using research embeddings and Large Language Models.
How to Commission Rapid Evidence Assessments for Policy
The discussion will explore what are the best ways to fast track research synthesis while maintaining academic rigour? And what should be the future of rapid synthesis of research?
Join our panel discussion event that marks the release of our latest report: “Rapid Evidence Assessments: A Guide for Commissioners, Funders, and Policymakers.” written in partnership with UK Post Parliament, Rapid Research Evaluation and Approach (RREAL) and Capabilities in Academic Policy Management (CAPE).
As part of a series of IPPO events on Innovations in Evidence, we invite the panel to reflect on how to manage rapid reviews to get the best outcomes, lessons learned—or lost—from the COVID pandemic, and the future of rapid reviews for policymakers, followed by a Q&A. A copy of the report will also be shared with attendees after the event.
The event will be chaired by Jonathan Breckon, Thematic Director, International Public Policy Observatory, and guest speakers include:
• Andrea Tricco, Associate Professor, University of Toronto; lead co-author of the WHO guide on rapid reviews
• Sandy Oliver, Deputy Director, EPPI Centre, and co-author of the Commissioning Guide
• Harry Achillini, Evidence Synthesis Lead, Research and Evidence Division, Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office, UK
Systems Mapping: Best Approaches and What Works for Policy Design
This discussion will look at the potential for systems maps to provide a common picture of how things work. We’ll look at where evidence is strong and weak, and who has the power to influence change, in fields ranging from net zero to poverty.
We’ll discuss what are the best approaches to systems mapping, and explore how academics can use these techniques to give policymakers a clearer understanding of social complexity.
With presentations from Viliana Dzhartova of Reimagined Futures, Alex Penn of CECAN, Roisin Dillon who won the Map the System Global competition in 2018, Alice Louka leads the Map the System programme, and Tom Hughes, senior policy adviser from the National Infrastructure Commission, we’ll explore how academics can use these techniques to give policymakers a clearer understanding of social complexity.
Transferability of Understanding: It Might Work, But Not For Everyone
This discussion will look at the question of transferability: if something works in one place and time, how do we know if it will work in others? We’ll be looking at the many frameworks and methods for helping assess and adapt evidence, and how these might evolve in the future, including lessons from other fields including business.
David Halpern, the ‘What Works’ National Adviser since 2013 and Chief Executive of the Behavioural Insights Team, Robyn Mildon, CEO of the Centre for Evidence and Implementation, Dylan Kneale from the EPPI Centre and Sir Geoff Mulgan, IPPO’s Co Principal Investigator.
December 6th, 2023: 13:00-14:00 – Please sign up here.
Using Evidence during Crises and Fast-Paced Policy Environments
As part of our Innovations in Evidence series, this discussion will look at how evidence can be used in fast-moving situations, from pandemics, riots and fires to financial crises.
Government policy making often happens under intense time pressures. These can result from both endogenous and exogenous drivers factors – not only crises (from pandemics to natural disasters) but also political commitments and public expectations of action. These situations involve conditions of high uncertainty, and the need to make critical decisions with wide-ranging impacts at great speed. To meet these challenges governments must quickly identify and employ the best available sources of evidence. These fast-paced policy contexts require a reconsideration of what kinds of evidence are relevant, valued and able to be absorbed when working under pressure.
Our speakers will include Eleanor Williams who is leading the recently launched Australian Centre for Evaluation (ACE) – an organisation that aims to support and amplify evidence of what works in the Australian public sector, Arjen Boin, Professor of Public Institutions and Governance, Leiden University and Carrie Heitmeyer, Head of Social Science at the Government Office for Science (Go Science).
January 25th, 2024: 10:00-11.00 GMT – Please sign up here.
Lived Experience, Lived Expertise and Evidence
The discussion will look at lived experience and how best to integrate qualitative research and lived experience into the gathering, synthesis and use of evidence,
February 2024 [TBC]
Using Evidence in Policy Making: What’s Next?
In this discussion, we will explore better ways to connect evidence to the other dimensions relevant to decision makers: what are promising innovations, what are plausible pictures of how whole systems might change?
March 2024 [TBC]
The Art and Craft of Knowledge Mobilisation
This discussion will explore the role of knowledge brokers, mechanisms for knowledge mobilisation, and processes and toolkits that can support that activity.
April 2024 [TBC]