Communicating for Influence: Policy and Media Writeshop during 24-25 August 2016 will bring together SUMERNET and other researchers, policymakers and media to help researchers improve their writing and outreach skills to have influence and impact outside the academic world.
In end January 2016, at the SUMERNET 10th Anniversary Meeting, we did a “writeshop” for researchers and partners to produce written products viz. journal articles and book chapters intended for the academic and specific-interest audiences. This 1.5-day Policy and Media Writeshop aims to help researchers improve their writing and outreach skills to have influence and impact outside the academic world.
The workshop aims to:
1. Help researchers to develop understanding and skills on how to analyse and understand policy audiences and the media.
2. Take key messages from your research projects to inform and influence policy makers and the media.
3. Produce two written products: policy briefings and media/press releases (or news stories) for policy and media engagement.
The writeshop develop skills for communications and policy engagement within and beyond the SUMERNET project. The workshop will help participants deliver two outputs that are in line with the mandated products as part of the SUMERNET research project or assessment case study. 1. Policy briefing: A 2-3 page briefing of key findings, recommendations and policy actions that are relevant to your research and policy-making audience (at local, regional or national level) from each project. 2. Press release or news story: A one-page press release or news story (or outline) to inform journalists/media about a significant finding from your project that you think can be a news piece in the media. This can also take the form of opinion pieces or editorial comment written by the researcher about their project. These may be in a format that is useful for printing in a newspaper or as a blog in an online news source.
The writeshop will provide an opportunity to hear from and ask questions of: 1. Policy Engagement Expert from the Mekong Region This person will aim to help participants better understand how policy making is done, how researchers can reach out to policy makers, how we should be looking for timely opportunities, what kind of messages can best communicate the important points of your research, etc. 2. Journalist(s) from the Mekong Region. The media person(s) will discuss how to pick key messages and package information to gain media attention in the region, key ways of attracting press interest about your research or findings, building relationships with journalists, and linking your research to other news events and stories to gain maximum outreach.