The science of communicating evidence: building an environment for good information to be believed & acted upon
What do we want for best evidence?
Researchers, academics, policy professionals, we all share a common desire - to ensure the best quality evidence and information informs our public and political discussions.
Our laws and our policies should be developed in the context of well informed and inclusive public discussion.
We care deeply about our work, we want it to be used to improve lives and society. We want it to bring people together.
What is the problem?
Good information is not always at the heart of public and policy discussion.
Misinformation and misunderstanding can lead to many erroneous beliefs in both the public and politics about important policy issues. It can lead to polarisation and incivility in discussion.
It harms vulnerable people and our collective wellbeing when the best data, research findings and policy recommendations on social, economic, legal, and environmental problems are not at the heart of our critical discourse.
A growing evidence base tells us good information will not be seen, believed or acted upon simply by filling the public space with more data or evidence about issue. It keeps people fighting about facts.
We keep doing the same thing the same way and expecting a different result.
What is our solution?
We take an innovative and evidence informed approach to communicating the evidence, one which helps create an environment in which good evidence can be seen, believed and acted upon by the public and those elected to govern.
Drawing on cognitive psychology, behavioural and values science, psycho-linguistics, communication, and evidence based medicine we use validated methods to understand and narrow the gaps between the public explanations of a problem and the evidence based solutions.
We create a validated package of values, frames, messages, and imagery that can be used in different ways by many organisations - community, academic, government - for engaging constructive and well-informed public discussion and engagement.
This method works to bring people together to focus on the best information available.
What is unique about The Workshop process?
It is research driven
It has strong theoretical and scientific foundations
It is participatory and inclusive
It connects people to each other, and to good information
It changes the public discourse for the better
Creates the opportunity for real change.
The Science of Story process can be applied across multiple areas including Poverty, Housing, Economic inequality, Criminal justice, Gender and sexual discrimination, Ethnicity and racism, Areas of law and public interest, Emerging technologies, Health, Drug and Alcohol, Tax
The Workshop methodology in detail
Using mixed methods, we research the cultural narratives or models that are used to explain a problem and solutions in society. We identify the underlying values.
We compile best evidence on the problem and solution using validated quantitative and qualitative methodologies.
We identify where there is alignment and misalignment between the cultural narratives and good evidence.
We develop and test potential messages informed by the framing, linguistics, and values data. We use focus groups and dial testing methods to determine which messages and stories are most effective at bringing people together and focus them on the good information.
We finalise and disseminate the Effective Stories Package for use by organisations.