Imagine you’re responsible for a policy that affects every household in the UK, but the goalposts keep moving and you’re unsure whether the policy is still working.
Contributing to the design of public policy that can respond effectively to the UK’s societal problems is challenging. Policies are difficult to design and it can be near impossible to assess their success.
The Centre for the Evaluation of Complexity Across the Nexus (CECAN), a £3m research centre hosted by the University of Surrey, is transforming the practice of policy evaluation in Nexus areas, to make it fit for a complex world.
CECAN is pioneering, testing and promoting innovative policy evaluation approaches and methods across Nexus domains such as food, energy, water and the environment, through a series of ‘real-life’ case study projects with co-funders (ESRC, NERC, DEFRA, BEIS, FSA and EA).
CECAN has been delivering a programme of evaluation methods workshops, training courses in evaluation tools and specialist seminars delivered by international experts, to encourage knowledge sharing and capacity building amongst those working in UK policy making.
What is the Nexus and what do we do?...
Developing Policy Evaluation Methods
CECAN responds to a variety of 'real-life' UK policy issues, with evaluation and methodological solutions applicable to nexus topics, and other complex social settings.
Applying Evaluation Methods in Practice
CECAN addresses the tension between developing evaluation methodologies and ensuring their take up by scoping complex policy 'case studies' with co-funders.
Enhancing Knowledge & Capacity Building
CECAN encourages interaction and learning amongst co-funders, policymakers, social scientists and other experts, to form a 'community of practice' across Nexus domains.