Intelligent Designs Systems approaches to understand Policy Rationales and Objectives.


The delivery of policy benefits from a systematic approach. Operational Research techniques for Problem Structuring have immense potential to develop such approaches. The paper introduces the policy context in theory and practice for Operational Research projects supporting the early stages of policy delivery. Logical Rationale and sensible Objectives are the foundations for resilient Appraisal and implementation of policy with evaluation and constructive feedback. Problem Structuring Methods are offered as distinctive Operational Research contributions. The paper considers the complementary benefits of Soft Systems Methodology, System Thinking and Multi Criteria Decision Analysis illustrated by recent experience in Whitehall and at the most local levels of government. The earlier that these Operational Research techniques are applied the more intelligent the design of the policy. This enhances the likelihood of achievement of effectiveness and efficiency.


Ian M Mitchell FORS

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