Policy Engagement and Science Communication

Proactive research-based policy engagement is central to Environment for Development. With this training initiative, EfD aims to enhance the skills and capacities for effective policy engagement and science-based communication of EfD centers and researchers.

Besides enhancing the participants' individual skills, the initiative aims to further develop the policy engagement capacities at the EfD centers, the collaborative programs, and the EfD network. Hence, the ambition of this initiative goes beyond the delivery of a short course. It is a stepping stone towards a lively EfD community of practice on research-based policy engagement and enhanced impacts.

By participating in the initiative, the researchers will be equipped with tools and skills to coach colleagues at the EfD centers on policy engagement for impact. Some of these tools already exist, other tools will be developed in collaboration with the participants during the training.

Course Objectives

(i) Enhanced individual skills and capacities for effective policy engagement and science-based communication for impact;

(ii) Strengthened policy engagement capacity at EfD centers and collaboratives through experience sharing and coaching;

(iii) Strengthened EfDs networks (individual, national, regional, global).

Learning methodologies

Presentations, experience sharing and discussions, and a number of practical exercises where the participants develop plans for policy engagement linked to their research, write policy briefs, perform oral presentations, discuss and test coaching methods, and evaluate their policy impact.

In addition to attending the sessions, participants are expected to read a few papers and work individually on different assignments between the sessions. The participants link issues presented during the course to their own research work and to the reality at different EfD centers, countries, or policy contexts. Sharing of knowledge and experiences between participants and centers are important elements of the course.

Practical assignments 

  1. Formulate a “research-policy engagement plan” based on your own or your EfD center/collaborative’s research, including mapping the research-specific policy landscape, potential stakeholders, and a plan for when and how to engage with different stakeholders.
  2. Conduct a needs assessment for capacity development on policy engagement at your center and develop a plan for capacity development.
  3. Write a research brief, policy brief, or blog post based on their own research. 
  4. Make short oral presentations of research findings
Updated: 23 October 2023