ARCHIVE: Evidence and research
The Government is committed to the principle of evidence-based policy-making, and it is for each department to ensure that its policies are soundly based. As part of its role as Rural Champion within Government, Defra strengthens the government’s understanding of rural people, places and businesses by maintaining an evidence base of up-to-date information to support the effective targeting and mainstreaming of government policy and delivery.
Defra’s evidence base comes from two main sources;
- Analysis of publicly available information to provide a baseline understanding about rural communities and economies. Our analysis work is mainly devoted to monitoring Defra’s Departmental Strategic Objective 8 - Socially and Economically Sustainable Rural Communities (DSO 8).
- Targeted Research into rural issues – Defra’s rural Research and Development (R&D) programme is used to investigate issues which do not emerge from publicly available data sources.
Combining these two sources enables Defra and other Government departments to have a realistic view of rural communities and economies which is used to inform the development of sound and fair policies that deliver equitable outcomes for rural people, places and businesses.
The R&D Programme is directed by a strategy which is regularly refreshed to ensure that it remains relevant to government priorities and reflects the expectations of Defra’s stakeholders.
It also enables Defra to respond quickly to address new evidence needs, as they arise. For instance, Defra is currently working to improve the Government’s understanding of:
- the rural impact of the recession and indicators for the recovery;
- rural broadband;
- affordable housing; and
- fuel poverty solutions.
The organisation and accessibility of the outputs from Defra’s rural R&D programme are currently under review, but it is intended that all research reports produced under the R&D programme will be available on this page in due course.
Page last modified: 23 March 2010
Page published: 16 September 2009