Explorations in the research-policy nexus in the LMIP (Rushil Ranchod)

The Labour Market Intelligence Partnership (LMIP) represents an important attempt to promote evidence-informed policy making and the cultivation of the research-policy nexus in South Africa. From its initial conceptualisation, the LMIP has attempted to utilise a model of close engagement and interaction between government and the research community, to enhance the process of knowledge development and sharing amongst all stakeholders.

A key part of the LMIP’s research communication function is to reflect on the process adopted by the LMIP to develop a rigorous evidence base to support policy making in the Department of Higher Education and Training. A study has been initiated with the following objectives in mind:

  1. Locate the LMIP as a case within a broader debate on evidence-based policy making in South Africa;
  2. Explore the rationale for the structures, mechanisms and processes that were instituted to facilitate the development of evidence-based policy making in South Africa and assess the operation of these through the life of the LMIP;
  3. Explore the utility, importance, successes and challenges of research use to inform public policy making in South Africa through the case of the LMIP; and
  4. Determine strategies to enhance the operation of researcher-policymaker interactions in South Africa.

Interviews have commenced with senior research leaders in the LMIP and government managers, to unpack the nature and process of researcher-policy making interactions. This case study holds value to enhance collaborative interaction across government and ultimately contribute to enhancing the use of evidence in the policy making process. A report on the findings will be available in 2015.

Dr Rushil Ranchod is a Post-Doctoral Fellow at the Human Sciences Research Council and manages the LMIP’s research communication portfolio. He was a 2014 World Social Science Fellow.

For further information contact Dr Rushil Ranchod at rranchod@hsrc.ac.za