Evidence for Policymakers

The Hague, The Netherlands

15 – 16 December 2020

Due to the circumstances regarding the COVID-19 crisis we have decided to postpone the conference and are planning to schedule it on December 15 and 16, 2020. We are looking forward welcoming you to The Hague; the ScienceWorks team.

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Entrance is, due to the support of 7 ministries, free for policymakers of the Dutch ministries, excluding seperate research and advice entities. Registration form is available through the button above (limited offer).
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Background

The Corona Crisis is proving the complexity of connecting scientific evidence and policymaking day by day. The need for international exchange of reliable data and insights in effective policy interventions has never been more urgent in times of peace. These insights need to be both profound and directly available. Such instruments for creating evidence for policymakers have tremendously grown with the introduction of Big Data and the development of algorithms for generating new insights. Another widespread development is the use of Randomised Controlled Trials (RCT’s)  in order to enhance the effectiveness of policy instruments and the growth of new standards for experimental policies. 

Evidence for the effectiveness of new policy interventions is often related to the evaluation of policymaking. National Statistical Offices and many other governmental agencies play a role here. Evidence may also - especially in crisis situations - be used for the prediction of the effectiveness of new policies. In the Netherlands, the Policy Analysis Agencies (Plan Bureaus) have gained a special reputation to generate broadly accepted calculations which predict the effectiveness of political programs. Behavior Insight Teams in different parts of the world also have gained a reputation in creating well substantiated instruments to predict and enhance the effectiveness of policy interventions.   

In all of these processes of shaping evidence informed policymaking, scientists from all kind of disciplines, whether it is data science, statistics, policy research, behavioral sciences or a structured way of fact checking, play a crucial role to substantiate the development of policies. These processes for a sound substantiation for policymaking are a main contribution to more effective and predictable policies, if well organized.

Organizing evidence for policy

The way that evidence for policy is organized, differs strongly per country or region in the world. In the Anglo-Saxon culture we see Chief Government scientists, organizing the impact of science form inside the Ministries.  In 2010, the UK Prime Minister has successfully launched its What Works Networks with their related Behavior Insight Teams. In the US, we have seen What Works Cities and the “data for evidence” initiatives, started at the White House. Moreover, in January 2019, the US federal government has signed into law the “Foundations for Evidence-Based Policymaking  Act”. In the European Union in 2016, the Science Advice mechanism has evolved and Joint Research Centres play a role. The Netherlands has its Central Policy Analysis Agencies. In Singapore we see a National Research Council, housed at the Prime Minister’s Office.

Especially in democracies, evidence for policy is needed and needs to be robust. Bringing together the managers of these processes will create new insights and mutual benefits. This conference has the aim to bring together these experts worldwide to learn which methods and instruments can be applied for which situations and how they may improve the quality of evidence provided. 

The Conference in The Hague

The city of the Hague has recently welcomed the Department for Governance and Global affairs from Leiden University, the oldest university of the Netherlands. The Hague also houses many international institutes, including several international organizations for research and statistics. Leiden University and ScienceWorks are the organizers of this event.

The Hague is a unique city one of the very few Government cities based on a sandy beach. Next to this, The Hague has gained a global reputation as the LegalCapital of the World. The conference will offer ample opportunities to the conference participants to experience this special venue during the social program.

Terms & costs Register

Confirmed speakers

Erwin Muller

Erwin Muller

Dean of Governance and Global Affairs, Leiden University

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Jonathan Breckon

Jonathan Breckon

Founder of the Alliance for Useful Evidence, NESTA, UK

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Scott Douglas

Scott Douglas

Prof. Public Management, Utrecht University School of Governance

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Pieter Duisenberg

Pieter Duisenberg

Chair of The Association of Universities in the Netherlands (VSNU)

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Zeynep Engin

Zeynep Engin

Founder of Data for Policy, UK

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Marie Gaarder

Marie Gaarder

Executive Director of the International Initiative for Impact Evaluation (3IE)

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Peter Gluckman

Peter Gluckman

Chair of the International Network of Government Science Advisors (INGSA) & incoming president of the International Council of Science

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Nick Hart

Nick Hart

Chief Executive Officer of the Data Coalition and President of the non-profit Data Foundation

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Locations

Conference venue

15-16 December 2020 from 09:00 till 17:00
Leiden University, Wijnhaven

Turfmarkt 99

2511 DP, The Hague

Conference Diner

15 December 2020 from 19:00
To be announced

Social programme

14 December 2020 from 14:00 until 16:00 City Tour The Hague
Startlocation: Campus Leiden University, Wijnhaven

Turfmarkt 99

2511 DP, The Hague

14 December 2020 from 16:00 until 17:00 debate on the Arena of Policy, Politics and Evidence
Location to be announced

14 December 2020 from 17:00 Welcome drink & reception
Location to be announced

Traveling to the conference location

The conference will take place in Leiden University, Wijnhaven in the Hague, which is located 5 minutes from the central station. If you want to come by car, which we would not suggest because of the costs and traffic, you can reserve a parking spot on the website of ‘Parkeren in Museumkwartier’ (via this link), which is also the cheapest option for parking in the city center.

The conference venue is 27 minutes away by car, and 45 to 60 minutes away by public transport.

Please find a detailed description of the available means of transportation to and from this airport here.