Cabinet Office: Departmental Responsibilities

Cabinet Office written question – answered on 12th March 2018.

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Photo of Jon Trickett Jon Trickett Shadow Minister (Cabinet Office), Shadow Lord President of the Council

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, with reference to the responsibilities of the Minister for Implementation, what the terms what works and behaviour change refer to.

Photo of Oliver Dowden Oliver Dowden The Parliamentary Secretary, Cabinet Office

What Works: ‘What Works’ refers to the initiative launched by the Cabinet Office and HM Treasury in 2013 to ensure that the best available evidence informs spending decisions and the delivery of public services. It brings together of a network of 10 independent What Works Centres in policy areas such education, health, local economic growth, and children’s social care. These centres synthesise the existing evidence base in their fields of expertise and produce guidance for decision-makers both in government and on the frontline. Many of these research centres also commission or conduct primary research to fill gaps in the evidence base.

The National What Works Adviser and the Cabinet Office’s What Works Team coordinates this network. They operate across government to share findings from the centres and support civil servants in the generation and use of evidence. For more information, please see:

Behaviour change: Behaviour change in this context refers to the use of behavioural insights to bring about change and improvements, for example in policymaking and service delivery. For more information, please see the recently launched behavioural insights framework:

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