Scientists’ assessment of proposed policy

About the scientists’ assessment

Since the beginning of 2018, the government has been required to provide clear substantiation for proposed policy and legislation (Section 3.1 of the Government Accounts Act). In early 2020, the House of Representatives expressed its need for a scientists’ assessment of that substantiation: are the choices made by the government scientifically tenable? Are there proven effective or more effective policy alternatives in other countries? Is the evaluation strategy well thought-out? The scientists’ assessment is performed jointly by two researchers from different universities and with different research disciplines; they must not have been involved in drafting the policy proposal that is to be assessed. A standard form was developed for the science assessment in the initial pilot phase; this was submitted to the Speaker of the House of Representatives on 8 September 2020. After completion of the second pilot phase, during which the form was tested, the tool was evaluated and added to the House of Representatives’ toolkit in November 2021: