CSIR-STEPRI was privileged to host and facilitate a three-day Policy Training Programme for WASCAL’s thirty-four (34) Scientific Coordinators and Deputy Directors from 11 West African countries in ‘Policy and Policy Brief Development’ from 5th-7th July, 2022. West African Science Service Centre on Climate Change and Adapted Land Use (WASCAL) is a large-scale research-focused Climate Service Centre designed to help tackle issues with climate change thereby contributing to climate resilience of human and environmental systems.
Capacity needs for WASCAL included the challenge of translating complex climate science into messages that will resonate with the wider public and policymakers. It is against this background that the Center took steps to build the capacities of its Scientific Coordinators and Deputy Directors in policy and how to effectively communicate to policymakers to ensure implementation of actions that support climate change adaptation and resilience in West Africa.
The overall objective of the training was to strengthen the capacity of WASCAL’s Scientific Coordinators and Directors in policy brief development for increased engagement in policy processes and advocacy. Specifically, it was to:
- To improve the knowledge of participants on various aspects of public policy processes including what policies are, how policies are formulated, how policies are implemented and evaluated.
- To set the scene and highlight what policy briefs are, the role of policy briefs and other policy outputs in public policy decision making.
- To enhance participants’ skills in policy brief development processes and advocacy (including technical guidance on principles, methodological approaches, frameworks etc.).
The event involved an opening session with remarks from the institutional heads from WASCAL and CSIR-STEPRI. Technical presentations were delivered by selected resource persons based on the goal and objectives of the training within the context of WASCAL’s programmes. The presentations highlighted various aspects of policy brief development processes including introduction to Ghana’s policy context and methodological approaches to the preparation of policy briefs. These presentations generated discussions on the subject matter following dedicated ‘Question’ and ‘Answer’ sessions and discussions from homework and group work. A closing ceremony was held with closing remarks on overall impact of the training followed by presentation of certificates and training evaluation.
Outcomes from the Training
At the end of the training, participants capacities were enhanced to develop policy briefs targeting their area of work. Additionally, participants’ capacities were strengthened to implement well-written policy briefs for effective communication with decision makers using WASCAL’s scientific programmes for engagement with policy makers.
|MODULE 1: FOUNDATION OF POLICY AND POLICYMAKING||Section 1: Understanding the Policy Context Introduction Defining Policy Types of Public Policies Evidence-based policy-making The Policy Cycle Section 2: Policy Agenda Setting Introduction What is Agenda Setting? Problem Identification Problem Prioritisation What is the Role of Research in Policy Development? Section 3: Policy Formulation Introduction What is Policy Formulation? Policy Research Translation Harnessing stakeholder inputs Policy Drafting and Legislation The policy actors Section 4: Policy Implementation Introduction What is Policy Implementation? Policy Implementation and Technical Assistance Policy Implementation and funding Policy Monitoring Section 5: Policy Review Introduction What is Policy Review? What is Policy Learning? Why undertake Policy Implementation, Monitoring, Evaluation and Review? Policy Accountability|
|MODULE 2: POLICY BRIEFS||Section 1: Policy Brief Development Introduction to Policy Briefs Key Elements of a Policy Brief Preparing Policy Briefs. Policy Brief Checklist Sample Policy Briefs. Section 2: Policy Recommendations in the Policy Brief The importance of policy recommendations in the policy brief What are policy recommendations? Tips for writing policy recommendations. Parts and characteristics of a well-written policy recommendation.|
|MODULE 3: HOW TO ENGAGE IN POLICY ADVOCACY||Section 1 – Introducing Policy Advocacy Introduction What is Policy Advocacy What Informs an Advocacy Agenda? Who are the Stakeholders in Policy Advocacy? Why is it Important to Work with Others in Advocacy? The Policy Advocacy Cycle Section 2: Taking Action Introduction What is Coalition Building in the Context of Policy Advocacy? Developing Advocacy Messages Building Advocacy Capacity Effective communication|