Navigating uncertainty: evidence-based policymaking

SEAP panel discussion at the Press Club Brussels

In times filled with challenges like COVID-19 and climate change, making good, sound decisions is not easy. On 29th March 2024, experts gathered at the Press Club to discuss how evidence can guide policymakers through these uncertain times.

Participants of this discussion were Kim Watts (AmCham EU), David Mair (European Commission’s Joint Research Centre), and Sarantis Michalopoulos (EurActiv). They all emphasised the importance of using evidence to shape policies but also acknowledged its limitations.

One key takeaway from the discussion, moderated by our Board member Yiannis Korkovelos, was the need to consider various types of evidence, not just scientific data. Transparency was another topic raised in the discussion. The speakers stressed the importance of being honest about the evidence’s strengths and weaknesses.

During the debate, one participant suggested referring to evidence-informed policymaking instead of evidence-based policymaking. He argued that, ultimately, all decisions based on evidence are political, and therefore there is no absolute right or wrong.

The event also addressed the upcoming European elections and the need for trustworthy policymaking. At the end of the discussion, one thing became clear: evidence-based/informed policymaking is more crucial than ever.