Research Institute on Population and Social Policies



REPOPA is a 5-year project funded by the European Union within the Seventh Framework Program (FP7), involving six European countries (Denmark, Finland, the Netherlands, United Kingdom, Italy, Romania) and Canada as an internal evaluator with the aim of studying the relationship between scientific results and decision-making processes in the health sector and, in particular, in physical activity.

Recommendations and policies to promote physical activity have been developed in various countries and also at the EU level. It is recognized that physical activity does not depend only on individual factors and interventions in the health sector, but also on policies activated in other sectors, as well as on social, cultural and environmental factors.

The research is multi-disciplinary and is based on the "health promotion" approach, aimed at fostering collaboration between researchers, experts and politicians and integrating knowledge, priorities and values. The project starts an initial phase of mapping some national and local case studies and ends with the identification of good practices and the definition of guidelines, according to participatory methodologies, with representatives of politics, research, various professional fields, and with citizens and townspeople. In particular, the last phase of the project, led by the IRPPS, led to the development and validation of a series of evidence-informed policy making indicators through an international Delphi study, in which 76 researchers and policy makers from 6 European countries involved in the project and international organizations. The indicators were then contextualized at the national level in each of the 6 countries through national conferences in which the participants identified their strengths and weaknesses and associated them with different policy phases.

The study therefore has a strong operational and experimental component, using, as methodologies, the analysis of the contents of documents, interviews with public decision makers and experts, case study analyzes and qualitative surveys, which include various participatory methodologies.

The objectives of the REPOPA project are:

- study the ways in which research evidence is combined with other types of evidence in the policy making processes of intersectoral policies;
- explore innovative ways to translate research evidence into policy making processes;
- translate research results into evidence-informed policy making indicators, guidelines and recommendations for enhancing the use of evidence in policies in Europe;
- disseminate the results and lessons learned to build structures capable of improving sustainability in the use of evidence in policies.

REPOPA has developed and validated a series of evidence-informed policy making indicators at the international level.