The Big Secret of Effective Policy-Making

4 04 2013

Scott Morris, from the Center for Global Development, has decided to let us in on a little secret…

Here it is: you need to keep it simple for them.

No matter the country or political system, the ability to move policy forward on a national stage depends critically on the policymaker’s ability to forge a consensus among an array of actors (other agency heads, members of parliament, civil society, the media).

And while you can block virtually anything in the policy arena with a blizzard of detail, forging consensus requires just the opposite. Driving policy consensus often depends critically on boiling the issue down to its essence and saying it again and again and again.”

This is the number one lesson that I have taken away from any course or discussion on policy and influencing policy at my (now) two year Master of Public Health degree at Simon Fraser University. I find it very fitting that Scott Morris has so eloquently summed up my sentiment on affecting policy change just as I round out my final weeks of classes at a masters’ level. I will write more on this after the end of term!

– Sarah Topps 2013

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