Exploring some of the assumptions underlying ‘evidence based’ approaches to poverty reduction, this paper argues that the discourse of Evidence-Based Policy (EBP) offers poor guidance to those who seek to ensure that social policy making is informed by the findings of social science. EBP discourse relies on a technocratic, linear understanding of the policy making process and on a naïve empiricist understanding of the role of evidence. This renders it unable to engage with the role of the underlying discursive frameworks and paradigms that render evidence meaningful and invest it with consequence: EBP discourse does not help us understand either how policy changes, or what is at stake in dialogue across the ‘research-policy divide’. Rather than simply focusing on evidence, approaches to policy change need to focus on how evidence is used in the politically loaded and ideologically compelling ‘policy narratives’ that contest rival policy frameworks. The paper considers an example from the South African context...... [ Read the rest of this story ]
Call for expressions of interest
The Politics of Poverty Research: Learning from the practice of policy dialogue
19-20 NOVEMBER 2012
University of the Western Cape, Cape Town, South Africa
Expressions of interest to participate should be received by 28 September 2012.
Find out more about the symposium on our website at: www.plaas.org.za/event/symposium-pol-2012
The Institute for Poverty, Land and Agrarian Studies (PLAAS) at the University of the Western Cape, South Africa is pleased to invite expressions of interest to participate...... [ Read the rest of this story ]
We are just beginning to plan for a conference on research-to-policy strategies in social science and were thinking we'd like this to be much more participatory than conferences usually are. Does anyone have any tips or suggestions on this, or some recommended reading?
Thanks - I'd appreciate any assistance.