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Prof Kathryn Oliver

Professor of Evidence and Policy

United Kingdom

I am a social scientist, interested in how we make, mobilise and use evidence in policy and practice. With Annette Boaz, I co-direct the research collaboration Transforming Evidence, which brings together funders, decision-makers, practitioners and researchers from a range of disciplines and sectors. We aim to both do research on evidence production and use, and to ensure that the research we do is used.

I started work as a molecular biologist, and moved into social sciences and public health when conducting systematic reviews for policymakers, at the EPPI Centre. Interested in how evidence informed policy, I used social network analysis to explore the role of social structure in evidence use in local government for my PhD. During this work I connected with a hugely interdisciplinary community of researchers with similar interests, which led ultimately to the formation of Transforming Evidence. I have held research and teaching posts at Manchester, Oxford and UCL, and now at LSHTM.

I am currently working as a Fellow in the UK Government Office for Science, exploring how evidence knowledge needs are articulated and acted on by central government. Other bits of work include evaluation of various academic-policy engagement initiatives, working with funders and decision-makers in the UK, EU and USA to understand science-policy systems, and developing the field of evidence studies. I also have a long-standing interest in the evaluation of unintended effects of policies and practices.

Affiliations

Department of Health Services Research and Policy
Faculty of Public Health and Policy

Centres

Centre for Evaluation

Teaching

I teach social research methods, public policy analysis, evidence use and knowledge mobilisation, and public health

Research

Evidence production and use
Science/research/evidence systems
Unintended consequences
Evaluation
Academic-policy engagement
Research Area
Evidence use
Evaluation
Impact evaluation
Research : policy relationship
Science policy
Health policy
Political science
Sociology
Region
European Union
North America

Selected Publications

How Should Academics Engage in Policymaking to Achieve Impact?
Cairney, P; OLIVER, K;
2018
Political Studies Review
Networks and network analysis in evidence, policy and practice
OLIVER, K; Faul, MV;
2018
EVIDENCE & POLICY
A modified action framework to develop and evaluate academic-policy engagement interventions.
MÄKELÄ, P; Boaz, A; OLIVER, K;
2024
Implementation science : IS
Mapping the field of evidence production and use
OLIVER, K; Adie, E; Boaz, A;
2024
Handbook of Meta-Research
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