Policy Guidebook Introduction

The Policy Guidebook is designed to provide a consistent and compatible description and assessment of each policy measure included in it, and to facilitate updating and the addition of further measures. Since it is difficult to find comprehensive empirical evidence on many policy measures, the Policy Guidebook adopts a part qualitative and part quantitative approach, using a standard eleven-point scale to assess each policy measure against a standard set of attributes. Its approach is outlined in Section 9 of the Decision-Makers' Guidebook.

Each policy measure is first assessed from first principles using professional judgement, and then reassessed in the light of such case study evidence as is available. An overarching quality assurance check is designed to ensure consistency in scoring across the range of policy measures.

Policy measures in the Policy Guidebook are allocated to one of six categories of measure:

  • land use measures
  • infrastructure measures
  • management and service measures
  • attitudinal and behavioural measures
  • information provision
  • pricing.

Each measure is described following a standard structure:

  • summary: a one page summary of the description and findings;
  • taxonomy and description, which describes what the measure is, how it works, what it tries to do, and how it contributes to different strategies;
  • first principles assessment, which assesses from first principles how it affects demand, supply and finance; how, through these impacts, it might contribute to policy objectives and the resolution of policy problems, and what the barriers are to its implementation;
  • evidence on performance, which summarises a series of case studies, and evidence on their contribution to policy objectives;
  • policy contribution, which combines the findings of the previous two sections to summarise the measure’s contribution to policy objectives and the resolution of policy problems, and identifies the areas in which it might most usefully operate;
  • references.

The standard lists of strategies, objectives and problems are consistent with those in the Decision-Makers’ Guidebook, and are defined more fully there. The standard list of barriers has been updated more recently to reflect current needs. The standard list of areas reflects the differing needs of cities. A further standard list of performance indicators is used in the option generators, but is not shown since it largely reflects the assessment of problems.

For each of these lists a standard scoring scheme is used, which ranges from +5 (shown as five red ticks) to -5 (shown as five black crosses), with a neutral point. The full range is used for objectives, problems and indicators, while only positive scores are used for strategy and area type, and only negative ones for barriers. Care is taken in the quality assurance process to ensure consistency between the scores within and between policy measures. The scores for performance indicators are based on those for problems. It is these scores which drive the option generation facilities described below.

The Policy Guidebook is under continuing development. It currently provides information on 64 policy measures. We are always interested in case studies which can strengthen KonSULT’s database on policy measures. If you have information which you think might be of value, please contact us.

To use the Policy Guidebook, simply click on one of the categories of measure, and choose a measure of interest from the drop-down list. As an alternative, the Measure Option Generator includes a link directly to each of the policy measures which it lists.