Processes for informing policy and practice

The diagram below has been created from interviewee accounts of how research is used to inform policy and practice. Not all interviewees felt there was currently a planned or coordinated approach for using research in their authority, suggesting that more thought needs to be given to this process. It may prove useful to check against this diagram to consider whether your Local Authority follows a similar set of procedures and whether any stage of the process requires attention or refinement.


The research is disseminated to:

relevant Local Authority staff
relevant external organisations e.g. schools
relevant individuals e.g. pupils, parents, teachers



  • Service users and practitioners are consulted about the intended policy/practice changes
  • Their views and opinions are collated and analysed



  • 'Working/task/steering' groups are set up within the Local Authority to:
    • consider the analysis of the consultation responses
    • discuss planning processes for the policy/practice changes
    • formulate revised supporting documentation
    • oversee the implementation of the policy/practice changes



Presentations are held to raise awareness of policy/practice changes
Presentations are held internally - for relevant Local Authority staff
Presentations are held externally - for relevant organisations and individuals



  • Practitioners provide feedback about the effects and success of the policy/practice changes through:
    • focus groups
    • forums
    • questionnaires
    • surveys
    • conferences
    • telephone and email communication


Review of impact

Ongoing review of statistical data and outcome measures such as:
examination results
attendance figures
numbers of care leavers
teenage pregnancy statistics



Service users are consulted about the effectiveness of the policy/practice changes
Their views and opinions are collated and analysed