We are a network of experienced development professionals who all take a political economy perspective to development. Our Directors, Principals and Associates have specialist knowledge of particular countries and sectors. They have strong connections to government, the private sector, civil society, media and research organisations. They bring to bear their own long working experience within official agencies, academia and the private sector.
The Policy Practice applies a political economy approach to supporting positive change in developing countries. We undertake strategic and policy work in developing countries, including political economy analysis, programme designs, reviews, and evaluations. We also run a flagship training course on political economy analysis and provide bespoke training for a wide variety of clients.
Gareth Williams is the Research Workstream Lead and Laure-Hélène Piron the Technical Director (Research) of the second phase of the Learning, Evidence and Advocacy Partnership (LEAP) pillar of the Partnership to Engage, Reform and Learn (PERL), UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office Nigeria's £100m programme to support public sector reform in Nigeria.
Laure-Hélène Piron, TPP Director, and Aderito Soares, TPP Associate, have assisted The Asia Foundation Timor-Leste Tourism Team update their political economy analysis in order to adjust their programme to the 2021 circumstances. The Covid-19 restrictions on international travel and low level of vaccinations mean that tourists cannot travel to Timor-Leste. Through a remote and facilitated process, The Policy Practice team have, at the same time, enabled the Tourism team identify the main enablers and barriers, and refocus their strategy. The process also further developed the team’s own capacity to undertake political economy analysis and stakeholders mapping. This project built on the 2020 in-person support that The Policy Practice provided to facilitate a baseline political economy analysis.
The overall objective of this project is to produce a strategy for the Economic Policy and Research (EPR) Division of the Department of Economic Affairs (DEA) at the African Union Commission (AUC), as well as providing recommendations to the FCDO to inform their future engagement with the AU on tax matters. The team is lead by our TPP Principal, Olly Owen, with lead consultant Doris Akol undertaking fieldwork in Ethiopia, supported by Martin Hearson from IDS.
This study will include both desk based and field based research and consultation with key stakeholders to identify the opportunities and challenges for member states in relation to tax.
The Policy Practice is a lead provider of training on applied political economy analysis for development practitioners.
Political economy analysis provides a deeper understanding of the contexts in which development happens – whether international, national, sectoral or local. It explores how structural factors, institutions and incentives of the key actors shape the possibilities for change in any given context – and how development partners can influence this.
Our course is designed to equip advisers and programme managers to identify the main political and institutional challenges and opportunities in the contexts in which they work, and to draw well-grounded conclusions for strategy, programme design and approaches to implementation.
We have run our flagship course for development professionals over 40 times since 2008. We also offer tailored courses and bespoke advice to organisations that wish to deepen their capacity to undertake political economy analysis or manage their programmes more adaptively. Course participants come from bilateral and multilateral organisations, such as the UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, the US Agency for International Development, the Netherlands Foreign Ministry, Irish Aid, the Department for Foreign Affairs and Trade of Australia, the International Monetary Fund, the European Commission, or the United Nations Development Programme. Our clients also include research centres, non-governmental organisations and private companies, such as the Nigerian Institute of Social and Economic Research, Save The Children, Saferworld, DAI, Palladium or Chemonics.
Political economy analysis in action online training course
We are pleased to announce the launch of our next course from 21st February to 24th June 2022. If you would like to register for this course, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Participants on our interactive 17-week online course:
- Learn what political economy analysis is and why it matters
- Explore political economy concepts and how to use them
- Interact with leading experts on political economy analysis and thinking and working politically on a weekly basis
- Work through real-life case studies applying political economy tools to development challenges
- Participate in regular webinars with other course participants
- Learn how to ‘think and work politically’ in their own work
- Participants work both independently and in small groups to complete weekly tasks
For further information, see our course flyer.