Policy Engagement

Policy Engagement

Policy engagement describes the many ways in which researchers and actors in the policymaking community connect and explore areas of mutual interest at various stages in their respective research and policymaking processes.

From informal enquiries to formal inquiries, in consultation or sustained collaboration, policy engagement enables research and policymaking communities to improve public policy through making the most of their evidence, expertise and experience. It offers researchers opportunities to maximise the potential impact of their work – and, in the process, to deepen their understanding of its value and usefulness, to promote it, and to identify and shape further research needs and strengthen their case for funding.

Oxford’s social scientists engage with local, national and international policymaking communities, bringing fresh perspectives, understanding of what has worked elsewhere, and why. Through sharing their knowledge, expertise and insight, they contribute to outcomes that benefits research, policy and the wider world.

The Social Sciences Division’s Research, Impact and Engagement (RIE) Team can provide advice, training, and funding support, and examples of how to develop your policy engagement activites to maximise the benefits for public policy makers and for researchers. 

Many researchers at Oxford also benefit from membership of the Oxford Policy Engagement Network (OPEN). OPEN connects them with hundreds of others across the University who share their policy interests, with opportunities aligned to those interests, and with relevant guidance, resources, funding, and opportunities. It also makes it easier for local, national and international policymakers to connect with them.

Watch: Social scientists engaging with the policymaking community



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Who can help me?

The Social Sciences Division's Research, Impact and Engagement Team works with colleagues across Oxford’s Research Services and Academic Divisions, as well as with the Gardens, Libraries and Museums (GLAM), to ensure that Social Sciences researchers have as many opportunities as possible to develop their policy engagement skills and activities. Contact one of the specialist Team members below for advice on the best next steps for your policy engagement ideas: