Search Results for: early intervention

Early intervention policy, from ‘troubled families’ to ‘named persons’: problems with evidence and framing ‘valence’ issues

Imagine this as your ‘early intervention’ policy choice: (a) a universal and non-stigmatising programme for all parents/ children, with minimal evidence of effectiveness, high cost, and potential public opposition about the state intervening in family life; or (b) a targeted, … Continue reading

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Filed under agenda setting, Evidence Based Policymaking (EBPM), Prevention policy, public policy, Scottish politics, UK politics and policy

Case studies: prevention and early intervention to address austerity and inequality #POLU9SP

This is the first of three posts which use case studies of cross-cutting and specific policy areas to add more depth to our discussion of Scottish politics and policymaking. We begin with a broad focus on ‘prevention’ policy for 4 reasons: … Continue reading

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Social investment, prevention and early intervention: a ‘window of opportunity’ for new ideas?

In policy studies, we talk about the rare occasions when some problems or policy solutions ‘take off’ suddenly or when an ‘idea’s time seems to come’. Indeed, one aim of Kingdon’s ‘multiple streams analysis’ is to show us that ideas come … Continue reading

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Filed under ESRC Scottish Centre for Constitutional Change, Evidence Based Policymaking (EBPM), Public health, public policy, Scottish independence, Scottish politics, UK politics and policy

Case studies: early years, compulsory, further, and higher education #POLU9SP

This is the third of three posts which use case studies of cross-cutting and specific policy areas to add more depth to our discussion of Scottish politics and policymaking. One of the SNP Government’s main aims is to abolish inequalities … Continue reading

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Early thoughts on the SNP conference: 2 speeches postponing independence and social democracy

The SNP describes itself as ‘a social democratic political party committed to Scottish independence’. However, two key speeches at the SNP’s annual conference in 2015 suggest that both aims will have to be postponed. Instead, the political dynamic in Scotland … Continue reading

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The UK government’s imaginative use of evidence to make policy

This post describes a new article published in British Politics (Open Access). May I have your attention as I describe to you my new article, 'The UK government’s imaginative use of evidence to make policy'? https://t.co/AD4BZBRsUf pic.twitter.com/c4P1NHJgNF — Professor Paul … Continue reading

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A 5-step strategy to make evidence count

Let’s imagine a heroic researcher, producing the best evidence and fearlessly ‘speaking truth to power’. Then, let’s place this person in four scenarios, each of which combines a discussion of evidence, policy, and politics in different ways. Imagine your hero … Continue reading

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Evidence based policymaking: 7 key themes

I looked back at my blog posts on the politics of ‘evidence based policymaking’ and found that I wrote quite a lot (particularly from 2016). Here is a list based on 7 key themes. 1. Use psychological insights to influence … Continue reading

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Filed under agenda setting, Evidence Based Policymaking (EBPM), Prevention policy, public policy, Storytelling, UK politics and policy

Why doesn’t evidence win the day in policy and policymaking?

Politics has a profound influence on the use of evidence in policy, but we need to look ‘beyond the headlines’ for a sense of perspective on its impact. It is tempting for scientists to identify the pathological effect of politics … Continue reading

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Filed under Evidence Based Policymaking (EBPM), Prevention policy, Public health, public policy, tobacco, tobacco policy

What do you do when 20% of the population causes 80% of its problems? Possibly nothing.

Avshalom Caspi and colleagues have used the 45-year ‘Dunedin’ study in New Zealand to identify the ‘large economic burden’ associated with ‘a small segment of the population’. They don’t quite achieve the 20%-causes-80% mark, but suggest that 22% of the … Continue reading

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What happens when UK Governments try to control and delegate policymaking? #POLU9UK

To celebrate Andy Murray becoming number 1, I have recorded the podcast in the style of him giving an interview:   British politics looks weird because UK governments have contradictory incentives: to look like they are in control, but delegate … Continue reading

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Week 2. Two stories of British politics: the Westminster model versus Complex Government #POLU9UK

I want you to think about the simple presentation of complex thought. How do we turn a world which seems infinitely complex into an explanation which describes that world in a few minutes or seconds? How do we choose the … Continue reading

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We need better descriptions than ‘evidence-based policy’ and ‘policy-based evidence’: the case of UK government ‘troubled families’ policy

Here is the dilemma for ‘evidence-based’ ‘troubled families’ policy: there are many indicators of ‘policy based evidence’ but few (if any) feasible and ‘evidence based’ alternatives. Viewed from the outside, TF looks like a cynical attempt to produce a quick … Continue reading

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Governments think it’s OK to use bad evidence to make good policy: the case of the UK Government’s ‘troubled families’

The UK Government’s ‘troubled families’ policy appears to be a classic top-down, evidence-free, and quick emotional reaction to crisis. It developed after riots in England (primarily in London) in August 2011. Within one week, and before announcing an inquiry into … Continue reading

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Filed under Prevention policy, public policy, UK politics and policy

SP

POLU9SP: Politics and Policymaking in Scotland POLU9SP (2015 Autumn) – module hand-out Here is the list of blog posts that correspond to my lectures for this course. Each week, I will add a link to two posts. All going well, both … Continue reading

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Prevention

Paul Cairney and Emily St Denny Our study of prevention policy provides a cautionary tale for policy scholars and policymakers: focus on the need to make choices and gauge their unequal effect on target populations, rather than seeking or describing mythical … Continue reading

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The politics of evidence and randomised control trials: the symbolic importance of family nurse partnerships

We await the results of the randomised control trial (RCT) on family nurse partnerships in England. While it looks like an innocuous review of an internationally well-respected programme, and will likely receive minimal media attention, I think it has high-stakes … Continue reading

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Filed under Evidence Based Policymaking (EBPM), public policy, UK politics and policy

PhD Students: research is hard and it’s OK to simplify

I’m going to list this under posts for social/ political science PhD students, but it has a broader applicability. The simple message is that: if you are finding it hard to research and write a complicated PhD it’s not all … Continue reading

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How would Lisa Simpson and Monty Burns make progressive social policy?

Many of us may have a broad idea about how to make good, ‘progressive’, social policy. Or, we might find a lot of agreement on a collection of (albeit often-vague) terms to describe a philosophy of policy and policymaking. This … Continue reading

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Filed under public policy, Scottish politics, UK politics and policy

Does anyone know what the UK Government’s mental health policy is?

If we say that they are cynical policymakers, we conclude that it is their policy to use a commitment to parity as a veneer; that they know they won’t achieve their stated aims and are happy to accept or contribute to the factors that undermine it. If we say they are sincere, it is their policy to pursue parity as an ideal and do all they can to address obstacles and unintended consequences. Only in the latter case can we meaningfully say that their policy is parity (even though it makes no practical difference). Continue reading

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Filed under Public health, public policy, UK politics and policy