How to Write a Policy Brief
The aim of a policy brief is to briefly analyze a social problem and recommend a plausible course of policy action. Ideally it will meet three criteria:
1. Be targeted to an audience
It can be very useful to compare your policy proposal in these terms with a competing one and couch it in the language and priorities of the parties who will be receiving the brief.
2. Be comprehensive but short
Tables, graphs, and statistical figures can be an excellent way to be succinct and memorable but make sure they are directly relevant and from a credible source. The reader must come away knowing the core substance of the issue, its main stakeholders, and guidance on what directions the issue is likely to take in future.
An executive summary can provide an even briefer paragraph of the issue for the very time pressed reader. In many cases, this may be all they have time to read anyway, so make it count! Summarize of the content of the paper, briefly describing the issue and highlighting your final recommendations.
3. Be recyclable