for Management and Policy Studies' Better
process takes account of the impact on and/or meets
the needs of all people directly or indirectly
affected by the policy; and involves key stakeholders
directly. An inclusive approach may include the
those responsible for service
those at the receiving end or otherwise affected
by the policy
out an impact assessment
feedback on policy from recipients and front line
In addition to the
rather obvious claim for better policy-making
resulting in better public services, the Modernising
Government White Paper also suggests that modern
approaches can foster broader involvement of the
public in the decision-making process, encourage
greater citizenship and better exploit creativity and
diversity in organisations and communities.
The Green Book: Appraisal &
Evaluation in Central Government
2.17 Appraisals and
evaluations should therefore be carried out
collaboratively wherever possible between
stakeholders, but lead responsibilities need to be
well defined, and accountability for accuracy and
thoroughness clearly understood.
5.4 The range of options depends on the nature of the
objectives. For a major programme, a wide range
should be considered before short-listing for
detailed appraisal. Both new and current policies,
programmes and projects should be included as
options. At the early stages, it is usually important
to consult widely, either formally or informally, as
this is often the best way of creating an appropriate
set of options.
5.79 In practice, the weight to give to factors that
are thought to be important by key players cannot be
decided by experts. They inevitably
incorporate the judgements of stakeholders and
decision makers. The risk that they are weighted
towards acceptance of more expensive solutions by
those who would enjoy the potential benefits should
be tempered by at least one stakeholder representing
the opportunities that an expensive solution would be
6.6 In practice, other factors will also affect the
selection of the best option, in particular the
consideration of unvalued costs and benefits. Fully
involving stakeholders is very important in making
judgements between monetised and non-monetised
6.13 Consultation with external experts and with
those affected is very important at this stage,
whether or not formal or informal consultation has
taken place earlier on.
6.14 Consultation on projects will usually be on one
or two lead proposals; whereas consultation on policy
and programme proposals that have more widespread
effects should usually be undertaken both earlier,
and on a wide range of options and alternatives.
6.15 Analysis of who is affected by a proposal,
undertaken as part of the appraisal, may be very
useful in determining who should be consulted, and
also in considering the details of implementation.
Attention should be drawn to the key assumptions,
options and implementation issues. Consultation
exercises should be drawn up in line with the
following best practice guidelines :
- Use the most
appropriate approach. Written consultation
may not the best way to canvass views on a
policy or project option. Methods include
meetings with interested parties and user
should be easy to respond to (e.g., by
- Check if
statutory obligations apply.
sufficient time; consultation should be built
into the planning process at the start.
- Be clear about
who is being consulted, about what, in what
time-scale, for what purpose.
joining up with other consultations, for
instance in other government departments.
documents should be clear, concise and
- Ensure that the
process reaches the target audience.
- Ensure that
people are told the results, and the reasons
for decisions taken.