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Unformatted text preview: The Policy Brief 1 Overview The policy brief is a document which outlines the rationale for choosing a particular policy alternative or course of action in a current policy debate . It is commonly produced in response to a request directly from a decision-maker or within an organisation that intends to advocate for the position detailed in the brief. Depending on the role of the writer or organisation producing the document, the brief may only provide a targeted discussion of the current alternatives without arguing for a particular one (i.e. those who adopt the role of objective researcher). On the other end of the scale, i.e. advocates, the brief may focus directly on providing an argument for the adoption of a particular alternative. Nevertheless for any case, as any policy debate is a market-place of competing ideas, the purpose of the policy brief is to convince the target audience of the urgency of the current problem and the need to adopt the preferred alternative or course of action outlined and therefore, serve as an impetus for action . As with all good marketing tools, the key to success is targeting the particular audience for your message . The most common audience for a policy brief is the decision-maker but, it is also not unusual to use the document to support broader advocacy initiatives targeting a wide but knowledgeable audience (e.g. decision makers, journalists, diplomats, administrators, researchers). In constructing a policy brief that can effectively serve its intended purpose, it is common for a brief to be: Focused all aspects of the policy brief (from the message to the layout) need to strategically focused on achieving the intended goal of convincing the target audience. For example, the argument provided must build on what they do know about the problem, provide insight about what they dont know about the problem and be presented in language that reflects their values, i.e. using ideas, evidence and language that will convince them. Professional, not academic The common audience for a policy brief is not interested in the research/analysis procedures conducted to produce the evidence, but are very interested to know the writers perspective on the problem and potential solutions based on the new evidence. and potential solutions based on the new evidence....
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This note was uploaded on 02/26/2012 for the course UW 1020-31 taught by Professor Pamelapresser during the Fall '11 term at GWU.
- Fall '11