In the UK as elsewhere, policy related to drugs is a challenging and contentious area. The challenges are often expressed in the form of differences in views on the policies themselves. However, although rarely the focus of attention, it is likely that the governance of drug policy, how it is developed, overseen and assessed, influences both the character of policymaking and the types of policies designed. By critically reviewing the governance of drug policy, it may be possible to identify changes that could improve the policymaking process and drug policy outcomes.
To begin the process of exploring what may be needed to establish good governance of drug policy, the UK Drug Policy Commission in collaboration with RAND Europe undertook an iterative expert consultation. The main aim of this consultation was to develop a preliminary list of characteristics for good governance of drug policy. These characteristics would then be tested in a further phase of the UKDPC project.
This working paper was written with the intention of providing a detailed record of the expert consultation and the analysis at each step of the consultation process that led to the development of the initial list of characteristics of good governance.
This working paper should be of interest to government officials, policy analysts, academics and researchers, as well as third sector organisations with an interest in policymaking in contentious policy fields in the UK and elsewhere.
The overview and background reports for the research are available below: