Media plays a pivotal role in communicating the achievements and challenges of a policy. The more informed journalism would decide the direction and focus of the policy. Centre for Public Policy Research (CPPR) in collaboration with Friedrich Naumann Foundation (FNF) conducted a workshop on policy communication for journalists in Kerala. This workshop was to make the media familiar with Kerala’s public policy space; to take a complex issue and turn it into a story that’s easily communicated to the public.

The one day workshop focused on policy communication themes like reading of the public policy framework, rule of law and role of the state and market. Sessions were a mix of expert presentations, interactive discussions and more. The first session on Role of State and Market was deliberated by Mr. Rahul V Kumar who is a Research Fellow (Market Economics) at CPPR. He introduced the audience to public policy; defining it and providing certain aspects to understand the tedious nature of policy formulation. Unintended consequences and paradoxical results often derail intended outcomes of policies, it is therefore necessary to understand the different possible outcomes of particular policies and suggest corrections and reforms. The second part of the session used simple matrices to think through the possible outcome of policies.The case studies presented were on health crises to show how interactions between individuals could create possibilities for state intervention. The session also deliberated on how a state controlled monopoly like alcohol in Kerala could actually lead to several bad outcomes. These studies indicate the scope of reforming these sectors. The session concluded with ideas on how to reduce the effects of unintended consequences by exploring root causes of issues.

The penultimate session was by Adv Syam Kumar, Advocate, Associate Professor and faculty member for Maritime Law at School of Legal Studies,CUSAT. He gave real life examples and case studies which made the session interesting and helped the audience to understand the concept of Rule of Law and made us ponder upon our personal liberty and freedom. The session concluded with a Q/A session with the participants; giving them examples on how rule of law affects the society, protecting the citizens against any abuse of power by the state.

The final session was by Dr. D Dhanuraj, Chairman, CPPR on Effective Policy Making for Better Governance where he talked about urban mobility and transportation which was one of the major projects executed by CPPR. He gave examples and figures on various policy related subjects and critically analysed its effects on the society.

The workshop ended on a high note and was well received by the participants.

This report was published in EBM News on 16 December 2021. Click here to read

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