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Article

Evidence-based best practice is more political than it looks: a case study of the 'Scottish Approach'

Citation
Cairney P (2017) Evidence-based best practice is more political than it looks: a case study of the 'Scottish Approach'. Evidence and Policy, 13 (3), pp. 499-515. https://doi.org/10.1332/174426416X14609261565901

Abstract
National governments use evidence selectively to argue that a successful policy intervention in one local area should be emulated in others ('evidence-based best practice'). However, the value of such evidence is always limited because there is: disagreement on the best way to gather evidence of policy success, uncertainty regarding the extent to which we can draw general conclusions from specific evidence, and local policymaker opposition to interventions not developed in local areas. How do governments respond to this dilemma? This article identifies the Scottish Government response: it supports three potentially contradictory ways to gather evidence and encourage emulation

Keywords
Scottish Approach; best practice; evidence-based policymaking; scaling up

Journal
Evidence and Policy: Volume 13, Issue 3

StatusPublished
Author(s)Cairney, Paul
FundersEconomic and Social Research Council
Publication date31/08/2017
Publication date online17/04/2016
Date accepted by journal14/03/2016
URLhttp://hdl.handle.net/1893/23010
PublisherPolicy Press
ISSN1744-2648
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