What makes evidence-based policymaking such a useful myth?: The case of NICE guidance on bariatric surgery in the UK


Boswell, John (2017) What makes evidence-based policymaking such a useful myth?: The case of NICE guidance on bariatric surgery in the UK Governance

Download

[img] Other EBPMpaper_Revised - Accepted Manuscript
Available under License University of Southampton Accepted Manuscript Licence.

Download (78kB)

Description/Abstract

There is widespread scepticism among policy scholars and practitioners about the move to rationalise policy making: the naive vision of ‘evidence-based policy’ is often contrasted with the reality of ‘policy-based evidence’. Yet the language of evidence-based policy making (EBPM) continues to dominate policy debate about complex and contested issues. In this paper, I explore this apparent paradox by looking at what makes EBPM such a useful myth for all sorts of policy actors. I do so with reference to the pioneering work of the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), focusing specifically on its work in relation to bariatric surgery, a suite of controversial and drastic weight loss procedures. I show that the myth of EBPM has political, pragmatic and procedural utility in practice, allowing the organisation to set and administer guidelines on this uncertain, complex and contested treatment in ways which sustain buy-in and enable ongoing contestation.

Item Type: Article
ISSNs: 0952-1895 (print)
Keywords: Evidence-based policy making; rationality; policy practice; obesity; NICE
Organisations: Politics & International Relations
ePrint ID: 406450
Date :
Date Event
18 February 2017Accepted/In Press
Date Deposited: 10 Mar 2017 10:47
Last Modified: 18 May 2017 04:01
Further Information:Google Scholar
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/406450

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item

Downloads from ePrints over the past year. Other digital versions may also be available to download e.g. from the publisher's website.

View more statistics