Do multidisciplinary approaches enhance policy implementation?

Published on: 01/04/2020
Last update: 17/01/2022

The legal interoperability team of the European Commission (EC) studied inspiring practices around the world of considering interoperability in policymaking (e.g. by Denmark, the International Committee of the Red Cross, the UN/CEFACT, the Intergovernmental Organisation for International Carriage by Rail, and the World Bank, among others). This study revealed that one of the key elements to enhance interoperability and to create digital-ready and future-proof legislation is to embrace multidisciplinary approaches. More specifically, policymakers should involve, as early as possible, a well balanced multidisciplinary team including those stakeholders who will implement the policy including for instance business analysts, enterprise architects, domain specific experts.

The European Interoperability Framework also reflects the need for multidisciplinarity in its recommendation for a holistic approach by defining four different views of interoperability: legal, organisational, semantic and technical. To translate this into a practical example, policymaking activities involving public services should consider different groups of stakeholders. This could include, among others, lawyers, policy officers, service managers, data scientists, IT architects, engineers, etc. Hence, these stakeholders should be working with the subject matter experts, as early as possible in the policy cycle and involved in shaping the various policy options.

The EC Better Regulation Tool #28 on Digital-ready policymaking acknowledges the importance of  multidisciplinary teams as well, by presenting them as the key enabler of digital-ready policymaking

Our legal interoperability team intended to better understand the characteristics of multidisciplinary teamwork and published the issue paper focusing on the multidisciplinary teams in digital-ready policymaking in January 2022. You can find it here or further below to this page in attachment.

The issue paper considers the added value and challenges that derive from the multidisciplinary teams, analyses the ways to foster your multidisciplinary team and shares best practices and recommendations towards delivering policies that can be smoothly and seamlessly implemented.

We would love to hear about your opinion and experience on this topic. Please feel free to post any examples or good practices of multidisciplinary policymaking activities and share your thoughts on multidisciplinary teams - possibly addressing some of the questions below.


Question 1: Who should be on a multidisciplinary team for digital-ready policymaking?

Question 2: What is the most appropriate and effective model for multidisciplinary team management? How an effective leadership can be ensured in a multidisciplinary team?

Question 3: How to keep everyone motivated and feel valuable in an environment based on multidisciplinary skills?

Question 4: Could there be a policy framework for the definition and operation of a multidisciplinary team and how this could be drawn up?



Sat, 02/05/2020 - 12:29

It is an important topic and I am convinced (business) analysts can add rigour in the requirements elicitation process. For publicly accessible work on the VAT area, I co-authored in which has an ex-post focus, yet many ideas illustrated might as well be relevant ex-ante, that is alongside the regulatory impact assessment.