What Works?

Evidence-Based Policy and Practice in Public Services

Edited by Huw T. O. Davies, Sandra M. Nutley, and Peter C. Smith

What Works?

Edited by Huw T. O. Davies, Sandra M. Nutley, and Peter C. Smith

Distributed for Bristol University Press

With a Foreword by Ron Amann
396 pages
Paper $36.95 ISBN: 9781861341914 Published July 2000 For sale in North and South America only
What counts is what works - but how can we actually tell what works? And what can we do with such knowledge to influence policy and practice?

As all parts of the public sector embrace 'evidence' as a means of providing more effective and effcient public services, this book provides a timely and novel contribution to such debates.

The authors consider the role of evidence in specific public policy areas (healthcare, education, criminal justice, social care, welfare, housing, transport and urban renewal), using experts in each field to explore the creation, dissemination and use of evidence within each. They consider in particular:

•How is research evidence of service effectiveness created?
•How does such evidence shape policy and influence service delivery?
•What efforts are being made to encourage greater utilisation of evidence in policy and practice?

The rich cross-sectoral accounts of the many and diverse activities in each sector provide an insight into the ebb and flow of evidence as guidance to policy and practice. 'What works?' develops perceptive analyses of outstanding problems, and raises challenging agendas for service development and future research.

The authors conclude with the all-important question of the implementation of evidence-based practice and lead the way to the reinvigoration of innovative thinking.

With its relevance to both cutting-edge practice and research, this book is important reading for a wide range of managers and professionals in different sectors, as well as students and academics studying public policy, public administration, and social policy and management.

Foreword by Ron Amann
Editors’ preface
List of acronyms
List of contributors

1. Introducing evidence-based policy and practice in public services
      Huw Davies, Sandra Nutley and Peter Smith
2. Evidence and the policy process
      Sandra Nutley and Jeff Webb
Part One: Analysis by service area
3. Healthcare: evidence to the fore
      Huw Davies and Sandra Nutley
4. Education: realizing the potential
      Carol Fitz-Gibbon
5. Criminal justice: using evidence to reduce crime
      Sandra Nutley and Huw Davies
6. Social care: rhetoric and reality
      Geraldine Macdonald
7. Welfare policy: tendering for evidence
      Robert Walker
8. Housing: linking theory and practice
      Joe Doherty
9. Transport: beyond predict and provide
      Francis Terry
10. Urban policy: addressing wicked problems
      Tony Harrison
Part Two: Thematic analysis
11. A strategic approach to research and development
      Huw Davies, Gloria Laycock, Sandra Nutley, Judy Sebba and Trevor Sheldon
12. Debates on the role of experimentation
      Huw Davies, Sandra Nutley, and Nick Tilley
13. Non-experimental quantitative methods
      John Hutton and Peter Smith
14. Contributions from qualitative research
      Philip Davies
15. Making a reality of evidence-based practice
      Sandra Nutley and Huw Davies
Concluding remarks
16. Learning from the past, prospects for the future
      Huw Davies, Sandra Nutley and Peter Smith

For more information, or to order this book, please visit https://www.press.uchicago.edu
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