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UK Evidence Ecosystem for social policy

Producers
Consumers
Intermediaries

Non-Government Bodies

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Research summaries for policymakers and practitioners

e.g. Campbell Collaboration, Best Evidence Encyclopaedia UK
more...

Independent research organisations

e.g. Behavioural Insights Team, Institute for Fiscal Studies, Social Research Unit
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Professional membership bodies & learned societies

e.g. Society for Evidence Based Policing, Evidence Based Teachers Network, Royal Statistical Society
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Universities

130+ UK Higher Education Institutions, c25,000 social science researchers

Campaigns

e.g. Coalition for Evidence Based Education

Consultants & business

e.g. Social Innovation Partnership, Triple P Ltd
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Charities & social enterprise

e.g. Pro Bono Economics, Atlantic Philanthropies, Nesta
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What Works Centres

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Government Bodies

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UK Government Departments

In-house researchers, statisticians, economists in Whitehall, Scotland, Wales and NI Governments e.g. Government Social Research Service
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Arm's Length Bodies

e.g. Public Health England, Office for National Statistics, National Audit Office
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Westminster & Devolved Parliaments & Assemblies

e.g. P.O.S.T, House of Commons library, National Assembly for Wales Research Service
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Local Government

e.g. In-house local authority researchers, LARIA, Improvement Service
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Judiciary and legal bodies

e.g. The Supreme Court, Court of Appeal, Sentencing Council for England and Wales
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UK Gov

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Welsh Gov

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Scottish Gov

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ESRC

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The Big Lottery Fund

Non-Government Bodies

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Research summaries for policymakers and practitioners

Below are research summaries aimed at policymakers and practitioners - NOT researchers. Whether they are research hubs, portals, toolkits, clearinghouses, guidebooks or databases, these repositories of research are relevant and accessible to non-researchers. Most of these are freely available. However, those denoted with * are websites that do require a paid-for subscription. Only those resources with a strong UK presence are included. We have not included some of the world-class and influential research databases such as the UK Data Service or CLOSER. Although their data is useful for policymakers, commissioners and practitioners, their outputs are not directly accessible to those outside research - unless through third-party intermediaries or analysis by other specialists.

Cross-cutting social policy & practice

The Idox Information Service*

Holds over 200,000 summarised research resources, increasing by 1,000 abstracts per month, across 30 local authority public policy areas including planning, regeneration, social policy and economic development. ( Visit site )

Campbell Collaboration

A comprehensive website for lists of systematic reviews, they cover education, crime and justice, social welfare and international development. Based in Oslo, they are an international network of volunteers. ( Visit site )

EPPI-Centre (The Evidence for Policy and Practice Information and Co-ordinating Centre)

A 'knowledge library' of systematic reviews range across social policy and health. The large number of systematic reviews conducted by and supported by the EPPI-Centre have contributed to a broad knowledge base. ( Visit site )

Early Intervention Guidebook

An interactive online resource for those who wish to find out more about how to commission and deliver effective early intervention. It continually expands as they gain more information about 'what works' for children and commissioning children's services. A key feature of the Guidebook is the Programmes Library that contains the details of 50 programmes that have been successfully implemented in the UK. ( Visit site )

Understanding Society

Also known as the UK Household Longitudinal Study (UKHLS), Understanding Society tracks social and economic change in the UK. Started in 2009 with an initial sample of 40,000 households, it captures important information about people's social and economic circumstances, attitudes, behaviours and health. They have a Policy Unit that can help with effective data-use by government departments, public bodies, charities or think-tanks, and garner evidence and experts. ( Visit site )

NHS Evidence

Index of evidence-based information from ‘trustworthy and accredited' sources. ( Visit site )

SCVO (Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations)

Evidence Library Registration is required to login, but it is free. Funded by the Scottish Government, The Evidence Library is interactive because it also facilitates comment and discussion, the exchanging of ideas and the sharing of knowledge. ( Visit site )

Social Policy and Practice*

A one-stop-shop for research, analysis and discussion of health and social policy, the database holds over 350,000 abstracts on social policy, 30% of content is grey literature. The database is made up from selected content from the major providers: Idox Information Service; Social Care Institute for Excellence; National Children's Bureau; and the Centre for Policy on Ageing, (NSPCC data is currently also being added) this is run through Ovid Technologies on a commercial basis. ( Visit site )

Social care

Social Care online

An electronic library delivered by the Social Care Institute for Excellence, with over 150,000 abstracts covering all aspects of social care, social welfare and social policy, currently free to access through a grant from the Department of Health. It covers information of people with social care needs; those receiving care services; key issues such as integrated services, safeguarding or legislation; Government policy and social work and the social care workforce. ( Visit site )

Education, children and young people

Investing in Children

A one-stop-shop for information for over 100 interventions relating to children's services, bringing together information about what works and cost-benefit analysis. ( Visit site )

Best Evidence Encyclopaedia UK

Focused on education, the website gives information about the strength of evidence supporting a variety of programmes available for pupils of both primary and secondary school-age. The site provides summaries of scientific reviews produced by various authors and organisations, as well as links to the full texts of each review. ( Visit site )

ChildData*

From the National Children's Bureau charity, ChildData is the only bibliographic database covering all aspects of research and practice in young people's social care. It is now only available through Social Policy and Practice. Content includes reports, research and resources on early childhood; education and learning; health and wellbeing; involving young people; play; sector improvement; SEN and disability; and vulnerable children. ( Visit site )

NSPCC Research and Resources

A free resource for those working in the childcare and protection sector, it includes all forms of case reviews and literature and current awareness bulletins. They provide research and statistics on child abuse; working with children and families; policy and guidance on child protection; resources; case reviews and learning materials. ( Visit site )

Teaching and Learning Toolkit

A summary of research relevant to teaching kids aimed 5 to 16 years. The Sutton Trust and Education Endowment Foundation Teaching have created this Toolkit to provide guidance for teachers and schools on how to use their resources to improve the attainment of disadvantaged pupils. The Toolkit currently covers 34 topics, each summarised in terms of their average impact on attainment, the strength of the evidence supporting them and their cost. For those working in Early Years, there is also another dedicated toolkit. ( Visit site )

Evidence 4 Impact

The UK's Evidence 4 Impact (E4I) provides a simple evidence rating system for programmes relating to schools, along with concise evidence summaries, which enable you to make a well-informed judgement on the extent to which a programme's effectiveness is 'proven'. Central to E4I is a comprehensive database of programmes available in the UK, including details on their effectiveness and cost, together with links to the providers and experts who can offer further support. The database can be easily searched by key stage, subject area and targeted group, so that results are tailored to the specific needs of your class or school. ( Visit site )

Ageing

Ageinfo

The only UK database covering all aspects of ageing and older age, including research and practice in the social and health issues of older age. A bibliographic database of over 55,000 books, articles and reports from the specialist collection held by the Centre for Policy on Ageing. Please note that the database does not give access directly the publication - it only finds titles. ( Visit site )

Crime

Crime Reduction toolkit

Using over 300 systematic reviews, and covering 60 different crime reduction interventions, the toolkit provides easy access to the crime reduction evidence base. Users can weigh up evidence on the impact, cost and implementation of different interventions and use this to help shape their crime reduction efforts. Note also the 2011 Scottish Government summaries of evidence on what works in stopping people from reoffending, followed a few years later by the 2013 UK Government's summary of evidence on the same topic. ( Visit site )

Note also the 2011 Scottish Government summaries of evidence on what works in stopping people from reoffending, followed a few years later by the 2013 UK Government's summary of evidence on the same topic.

Non-Government Bodies

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Consultants & business

This list includes larger consultancies, support services, not-for-profit and commercial organisations providing commercial services and programmes on 'what works' in social policy with staff who are members of the Alliance for Useful Evidence. It does not include the many influential sole trader consultants or smaller organisations. Note that many charities also provide consultancy services and may also be included in the section on Charities & Social Enterprises

Non-Government Bodies

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Non-Government Bodies

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Non-Government Bodies

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Charities & social enterprises

These are non-profit organisations committed to advancing the use of research evidence for social policy and practice. Please note that some charities below have commercial arms and are also companies limited by guarantee. Staff are members of the Alliance for Useful Evidence.

Government Bodies

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UK Government departments

In-house researchers, statisticians, economists in Whitehall, Scotland, Wales and NI governments e.g. Government Social Research Service

Staff from these departments are members of the Alliance for Useful Evidence:

  1. Cabinet Office
  2. Department for Business, Innovation & Skills
  3. Department for Communities and Local Government
  4. Department for Culture, Media & Sport
  5. Department for Education
  6. Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs
  7. Department for International Development
  8. Department for Transport
  9. Department for Work and Pensions
  10. Department of Energy & Climate Change
  11. Department of Health
  12. Foreign & Commonwealth Office
  13. HM Treasury
  14. Home Office
  15. Ministry of Defence
  16. Ministry of Justice