Leadership at the science policy interface: A case study of the Policy Challenges collaboration between Cambridgeshire County Council and Cambridge University Science & Policy Exchange
The Cambridgeshire County Council Policy Challenges Programme provides a unique model by which evidence-informed policy is developed as a collaboration between policy makers and early career researchers. Volunteer researchers from the University of Cambridge gain experience working with councillors and council officers on six month research projects on issues challenging the council and make policy recommendations. Past challenges have included questions around educational inequalities, government structure, and climate change. This paper is written in the hopes that insights can be shared with other councils looking for successful models of exchange with their local research communities. Here we outline the context, give two case studies of past programmes and highlight the key ingredients and lessons learnt from three successful years of this partnership, thought to be unique within the UK.