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Interdisciplinary conference on evidence use in policy

Researchers: Annette Boaz | Dr Kathryn Oliver

By Nuffield Foundation

Project overview

An interdisciplinary two-day conference for academics to share the findings of their empirical research.

Sharing knowledge across disciplines is a strength for the academic field of ‘evidence, policy and practice studies’, in that multiple theories, approaches, interventions and initiatives have been tried and developed. However, to harness this strength, it is vital that opportunities are found to enable conversations across disciplines and traditions, between those engaged in producing and using knowledge, and between those who ‘do’ evidence mobilisation for policy and practice, and those who research and critique it.

This conference will help to identify opportunities for learning and set research agendas across domains, whether methodological, theoretical or practical. The target audience includes funders, those working within initiatives designed to promote evidence use, researchers studying the relationship between evidence, policy and practice, those with a policy interest in evidence use and those working to bring citizen voices into the research process.


  • To promote the UK as a world leader in the field of enabling and studying the use of research evidence and implementation
  • To provide an opportunity for learning amongst academics working in the field
  • To support networking and the development of a community of practice and policy
  • To provide an opportunity to support and encourage PhD students and early career researchers working in this field
  • To work closely with funders to set a useful, relevant and challenging research agenda for the field to respond to over the next decade
  • To engage publishers and platforms to identify new ways to showcase the best research and practice from the field.


The conference will have the following outcomes:

  • Web archive of debates, keynotes and blogs from conferences hosted on UK-Implementation Society and Evidence & Policy pages of the Bristol University Press website
  • Publication of an interdisciplinary research agenda, co-produced with funders. An agenda that crosses different policy domains (health, education, social welfare and criminal justice) and also involves researchers from the range of disciplines critical to the field including social policy, politics, sociology and psychology. The conference will include space for co-working in small groups to develop an agenda and to build consensus around it using Delphi techniques.
  • Call for papers and/or book proposal co-produced with publishers
  • Improved and refreshed academic and policy community with interests in evidence use in policy and implementation.


  • Annette Boaz
    Kingston University and St George's University of London
  • Dr Kathryn Oliver
    London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine

  • Director, Education
    Nuffield Foundation
By Nuffield Foundation

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We aim to improve people’s lives by funding research that informs social policy, primarily in Education, Welfare and Justice. We also fund student programmes that give young people skills and confidence in science and research.

We are an open, collaborative and engaged funder that offers more than money. Through connecting the individual projects we fund, we strengthen their collective impact and give voice to an overarching narrative.