Public influence readiness assessment for your organisation
There are two parts to this assessment. Part A looks at the substance of your organisation's public policy objectives. Part B looks at your organisation's current capacity to do the work.
Part A: Public Policy Objectives
- List your public policy issues: in the context of our mission, goals, and existing work what issues can be furthered by engaging in public policy and legislation debate?
- List existing programs, services, research, outreach, lobbying and advocacy work where experience and expertise has been demonstrated in these issues you most want to influence.
- Identify which parts of government your core issues decided and debated. Further identify core arenas for influence which can shape policy decisions.
- List the desired policy changes you want, specifically with respect to laws, budgets, ordinances etc.
- Decide whether you will be proactively proposing new policy change, or reactively responding another group's efforts.
Part B: Organisational Capacity for Public Policy Work
- List the organisational champions of public policy work and measure the depth of the organisation's commitment to public policy change.
- Commit to developing a public policy plan.
- List who's been designated to do what and when, with respect to co-ordinate the planning process, clearing with the board, clarifying staff roles, creating a rapid response team, forming an advisory committee
- Clarify the systems in place to educate, inform, and mobilise members, partners and constituencies.
- Review understanding of legislative processes and structures.
- List resources that will be committed to policy influence work.
- Clarify media preparedness. Are you camera ready?
- If you are a not-for-profit organisation, clarify rules with respect to lobbying in your country.
Six Meetings to Action
Once a discussion has been launched, approval given to start a planning process and a planning team selected, the Handbook suggests that six meetings should cover the main requirements to create a policy influence plan for the organisation, as follows:
- Prepare the planning team and articulate visions and goals.
- Establish criteria for which issues to take up, and decide on the issues.
- Decide on target arenas of influence to work on.
- Choose strategies and tactics to achieve these and design organisational infrastructure (staff commitments, resource allocations etc).
- Create the workplan, with specific actions, targets and dates.
- Present the workplan to the whole organisation.
Source: Adapted from Avner 2002 Chapter One and Worksheet 1, p58-66
This tool first appeared in the ODI Toolkit, Tools for Policy Impact