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Developing Policy and Strategy

What makes for good policies and strategies?

Policies set out what a government intends to achieve and how it intends to act. Strategies describe the steps a government will use to implement a policy that is already in place. Getting both right, therefore, is a key step in improving the governance of a country.

SPARC works on four key aspects in developing policies and strategies:

Setting clear targets or outcomes

SPARC works with Nigeria’s state governments to develop policies that specify clear targets and reflect the views, experiences, and preferences of the people that they will affect.

Basing policies and strategies on data

SPARC works with Nigerian decision makers to help them develop targets and strategies that are based on accurate baseline information. Targets based on actual data are more likely to be realistic than those that are not.

Research and testing

SPARC works with Nigeria's government to ensure that it firmly bases its policies on research, as this will help to ensure that they benefit everyone they are intended to. Disadvantaged groups, such as the poor, can easily miss out if research isn't done to ask them what they need and want, and to find the best ways to target benefits.

Research is also important to check that there are no technical reasons to stop the policy being applied. Another reason for doing research is to make sure that the government services that have to apply the policy have the capacity to do so.


SPARC works within Nigeria to encourage the development of policies that conform to national and international guidelines. This means cross-checking to make sure that policies in one sector take into account the effects that they will have in other sectors – the structure of a water policy can have major implications for people's health, for example.

For information on improving, developing and applying policies and strategies please email our team.

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