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Community of Policy Practice launched 

Northumbria University recently held an interactive online event to formally launch its Community of Policy Practice.  The Community of Policy Practice is open to all staff at Northumbria University and membership has grown to more than 150 members since it was set up in October 2021  The launch event on 18 January 2022 featured a presentation from Professor Alistair Rieu Clarke and his research on international law, sustainable development and transboundary waters and an overview of the opportunities available through the Capabilities in Academic Policy Engagement (CAPE) project from Jenny Hasenfuss, CAPE Project Coordinator at Northumbria University. The event was … Continued

CAPEcast episode 6. Why we need evidence synthesis: exploring academic policy engagement with the International Public Policy Observatory (IPPO)

In our sixth episode of CAPEcast, our podcast exploring academic-policy engagement, Sarah Chaytor talks to Joanna Chataway and Geoff Mulgan from the ESRC-funded International Public Policy Observatory (IPPO) at UCL. Created during the pandemic, IPPO have mobilised swiftly to assess evidence from around the world to inform UK policy makers, enabling social science evidence to bear on policy making in a more effective way. In this episode, we discuss the key strands of IPPOs work, spanning care, homeless and mental health, and right now looking at issues such as population level mental health, social capital and the importance of communities … Continued

CAPE begins project on rapid evidence reviews with the International Public Policy Observatory (IPPO) and Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology (POST)

Policymakers tell us that there is a pressing need for swift summaries of evidence. But how can we deliver rapid reviews of research without cutting corners and compromising on quality? This pilot project will test different ways to marry policymaker demand with academic rigour. A partnership between International Public Policy Observatory (IPPO) and Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology (POST), it will develop and evaluate training, templates and toolkits for rapid reviews by university-based researchers. A year-long project, it will create a series of reviews needed by House of Commons select committees, covering health, COVID-19, or social science topics. The … Continued

Calling all policy professionals: 2022-23 CAPE policy fellows programme for policy professionals

Policy professionals including those working in UK central government, local government and the civil society sector in the UK are invited to apply for the 2022-23 CAPE policy fellows programme. The CAPE policy fellows programme is a flexible professional development programme which offers access to leading researchers across a range of disciplines at the five CAPE partner universities. The programme begins with each CAPE Fellow spending the equivalent of five days having 1:1 and small group meetings with academics. We anticipate that these introductory meetings will start during the second quarter of 2022. For any queries, please contact the Cambridge … Continued

Defra seek Digital Sequence Information expertise ahead of COP15 – register your interest by 16/01

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) are seeking to convene a panel of experts on the treatment of Digital Sequence Information in the post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework. The panel will focus discussions on Access and Benefit Sharing and discussions will help inform UK’s negotiation strategy ahead of the Conference of the Parties (COP15) on the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD).  CAPE are exploring the role universities can play in supporting engagement around rapid-policy needs, through the convening of ‘pop-up’, or short-term expertise groups that differ from the Scientific Advisory Council models. CAPE are encouraging colleagues from across UK Higher … Continued

CAPE knowledge sharing session

On 22 November 2021, CAPE hosted the first of its quarterly sharing sessions, themed around the ‘Incoming Policy Fellowship Model’. Sharing sessions examine each of the CAPE academic policy engagement mechanisms so we can discuss learning with the sector on what works. The session provided an opportunity for 40 public policy professionals and researchers to share their experiences and reflections on the incoming policy fellowship mechanism and its role in the policy engagement landscape. The presentations and discussion considered evidence of policy fellowships and introduced case study examples of successful fellowship schemes. What is the incoming policy fellow model? Incoming policy fellowship … Continued

CAPEcast episode 4: An inside look into the Ministry of Justice’s Evidence and Partnerships Hub

In our fourth episode of CAPEcast, our podcast exploring academic-policy engagement, Kayleigh Renberg-Fawcett talks to Amy Summerfield, Head of Evidence and Partnerships in Data and Analysis (formerly the Data and Analytical Services Directorate) at the Ministry of Justice (MOJ). We take an inside look into how the MOJ is structured and why they created their Evidence and Partnerships Hub, which provides a centralised and dedicated function within the department to allow MOJ colleagues to make the best use of academic expertise. Through this, they are engaging with academics to transform the way evidence is used to generate policy insights, and … Continued

Lessons Learned from the Policy Fellowship Model: Sharing Event 22nd November

On 22 Nov, 3-4.30pm, we are delighted to invite you to the first in our series of our quarterly sharing sessions, themed around the ‘Incoming Policy Fellowship Model’. You’ll hear from us about CAPE – who we are, what we’re testing and how you can get involved, before we move into a series of talks themed around experiences and reflections of the incoming policy fellowship mechanism and its role in the policy engagement landscape, followed by an audience Q&A. Incoming Policy Fellows are fellowships for policy stakeholders to visit universities to talk to researchers and research services staff about policy pertinent questions. These visits usually last 2-3 … Continued

National Policy Perceptions: Only two weeks left!

CAPE invites you to share your thoughts, reflections and experiences of academic-policy engagement. The survey is anonymous, open to all Higher Education professionals in the UK and should take no longer than 15 minutes of your time. We hope that your reflections and experiences will contribute to an evidence base as to what might help better support higher education professionals to collaborate with public policy organisations to deliver stronger, evidence-based public policy. In particular, we aim to understand the following: How (and how often) HE professionals across all job families currently engages and/or supports with public policy. Where the barriers … Continued

A year and a half of CAPE – what have we learnt?

A year and a half into our four year project, we took some time to reflect on our collective experience of the project so far, and what we’ve learnt along the way. Starting a project in a pandemic is difficult but brought surprising advantages CAPE commenced exactly as the first lockdown happened. Our usual methods such as meeting stakeholders face-to-face or hosting fellowships in person had to change. It also meant that we weren’t able to hire our project team as quickly which significantly affected what we could do in those embryonic first few months. However at the same time, … Continued