Very few would contradict the idea that policy decisions should be based on evidence. But how do we know if the methods we use to gather and analyse evidence are the right ones? Jeremy Hardie (Centre for Philosophy of Natural and Social Sciences, LSE) will be addressing this in a lunchtime seminar for the Young Foundation.

In his recent Evidence-Based Policy: a Practical Guide to Doing It Better (co-authored with Nancy Cartwright) is just what it says on the tin – a guide to determining what evidence is relevant to different social policy contexts. If you’re looking to transfer a successful policy from one place to another, the key point is not what works, but rather how the policy works and why. If we’ve seen a reduction in crime after installing CCTVs in parking lots, it’s important to consider whether this was achieved by deterring criminals, or allowing the police to catch them in the act. If it worked through deterrence, cameras should be made highly visible to the public, but if they worked by speeding up police response, the cameras should be less noticeable.
In this seminar, we’ll also be looking at several different Young Foundation initiatives that take alternative forms of evidence and different viewpoints into account, getting down to the hows and whys of what makes successful social projects.

To book a place for this event, please RSVP to events@youngfoundation.org. Please feel free to bring your lunch; light refreshment will be provided.

See a summary and reviews of Evidence Based Policy: a Practical Guide to Doing It Better.

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