Articles and events


  • Playground antics

    17 August, 2012
      Michael Gove’s decision to overturn internal advice of the School Playing Fields Advisory board has once again brought to light the difficulties politicians can have with advisory boards, writes Jo Casebourne. Politicians often have to...
  • Summer networking event

    Tuesday 24 July, 2012
    At this summer networking event there was optimism from the speakers for empiricism in public policy and plenty of reasons for why it should be adopted more. However the difficulties of engaging with evidence, for both...
  • Making policy better series

    Monday 13 February, 2012
    A series of seminars jointly organised between the Alliance, the Institute for Government and the National Institute for Economic and Social research explored the role of evidence and evaluation in policy-making.
  • Increasing evidence demand

    4 November, 2011
      Following last week’s announcement of the Alliance for Useful Evidence, Professor Jonathan Shepherd writes a guest blog on how increasing the demand for rigorous evidence will involve capitalising on the instinct of all decision makers....
  • Day 9: evidence in the real world

    20 October, 2011
      “You say “evidence”. Well, there may be evidence. But evidence, you know, can generally be taken two ways” – Dostoevsky, Crime & Punishment, 1866 The blogs over the past two weeks have demonstrated that embedding...
  • Day 7: making the debate relevant

    18 October, 2011
      Not everybody thinks that evidence is the most important thing in the world. But most would recognise that knowing whether a programme of intervention is going to be harmful to them, their family or friends,...
  • Day 6: managing the politics of decision-making

    17 October, 2011
      Research, evidence and data do not exist in a vacuum.  To influence decision making, sources of information have to compete with a myriad of other factors, ranging from political pressure, lobbyists, public opinion, ideology and...
  • Day 5: dealing with negative findings

    14 October, 2011
      Most people would recognise that we need to improve how we measure the impact of services and programmes. Yet what do we do when an evaluation brings back negative findings? In the quest for ‘what...