OverviewDo’s and don’ts
Related Tools

Policy analysis

Last edited: January 03, 2012

This content is available in


Policy analysis reveals the gaps and problems in existing policies in the broader sense – i.e. including legislation – that need to be addressed in order to end violence against women and girls. It should be one of the first steps in any campaign for policy/institutional change, as institutional rules and practice are to a large extent determined by relevant policies.


Practical guidance – In policy analysis, examine the following questions:

  • What is the issue the campaign addresses? State and define it.
  • Why is the issue important? (Scope and severity of the problem, other aspects that make the issue important from a public policy perspective, e.g. public health, rule of law, etc.)
  • What areas of policy are relevant to the issue?
  • Who are the main stakeholders?
  • What is the current knowledge of the issue? (I.e. review of existing research on the issue – do not forget to provide all references for your sources)
  • What is the existing policy on the issue and what are the main problems about current policy? (I.e. current laws, rules, policies and their implementations)
  • What are your policy recommendations to address your campaigns issue ? Why do you choose these recommendations (criteria)?
  • What outcomes will your alternative policy produce? How do you know the alternatives you propose will work? Cite evidence.
  • How can your recommendations be translated into practice? Outline an implementation strategy.
  • How can constraints and potential resistance be overcome?


An effective way to share the result of the analysis with the campaign audience is a policy brief.


If part of the research is monitoring or assessing the status of implementation of policies, a checklist is available at Programming Essentials.

The One World Trust offers a host of time-tested practical tools – checklists, step-by-step guidance through common methods for participatory planning and evaluation. Its website Accountability for Policy Research has an innovative, user-friendly search function.