In recent years, scientific evidence has been used increasingly to inform decisionmakers. The COVID-19 pandemic has certainly accelerated this tendency. Yet, structures to connect evidence with policymaking have been reworked and strengthened long before the outbreak of the global pandemic. Scientists have tested organisational working models, such as policy labs, to bridge science and decision-making, which is illustrative of the complex nature of policymaking. Different frameworks and methods, including Strategic Evaluation Agendas (SEA), have been adopted, designed and implemented by the Dutch Government. A SEA can be described as a more structured way of evaluating policy outcome through the policy cycle at large. As the Dutch government and Parliament are also aiming to stimulate evidence-informed policy (EIP), you may wonder which incentives and hurdles they experience to reach their goals.
Never before in modern history has there been a stronger demonstration of evidence based politics than in the current Covid-19 situation. The pandemic delivers the right momentum in the policy and political realm to implement long lasting ambitions for structuring evidence informed policies or to generate new ones. When doing so, it is highly instrumental to make use of ambitious new initiatives in different parts of the world.