On 17 March, European Commission's Joint Research Centre hosted a participatory workshop focused on professional skills needed in organisations working at the evidence-policy interface. Whether producing scientific knowledge or developing policy, both sides involved with evidence require a collective skillset to address the challenges of this field.
The aim of the workshop was to reach a consensus on what such skillset should contain and to brainstorm on best practice in training to introduce them in knowledge brokering and receiving organisations.
40 leading experts working on the theory and practice of evidence for policy convened in Brussels to discuss the specific competences needed to succeed in this area. Coming from the EU institutions, research and policy advising organisations from EU Member States as well as from New Zealand and Canada, they brought along a richness of experiences which sparked fruitful debates on the specific skills and their distribution in organisations.
The central themes recurring during the workshop were the co-creation of research and policy, stimulating the motivation to use evidence in policy and the ability to turn scientific results into stories with implications for policy.
The discussion on skills was complemented by a debate on best practices and an incubation of training (or other) interventions which would either strengthen or introduce these competencies in professional environments across science and policy. The initial projects will serve as prototypes for further development of real interventions.
An open deliberative process allowed for harvesting a variety of useful insights. They are currently being analysed in order to refine the internal JRC discussions (see the attached preliminary paper on skills). A revised skills map will be posted on this Community of Practice in the near future.
Presentations from the event and the preliminary draft paper on skills can be downloaded below.