The Win is Just the Beginning: New brief from ORS Impact on how advocacy can go beyond the win.

The following post is courtesy of ORS Impact

When it comes to policy, most attention is focused on “the win.” But—as so many advocates know—“the win” is just the beginning. Once a policy has been “won,” it moves to the policy implementation phase, where there are innumerable new decisions to make as well as new players, obstacles, and challenges. 

During this phase, advocates have a ripe opportunity to shore up advantages and mitigate against new potential threats. Beyond the Win: Pathways for Policy Implementation explores strategies and tactics that advocates can deploy to navigate and shape this complex environment—and get the outcomes they are looking for.

To begin strategizing, the brief first explores three unique types of advocacy activities where advocates can have impact during the policy implementation stage—administrative advocacy to influence rulemaking within an agency; implementation advocacy to influence activities like granting and contracting, development of advisory boards, monitoring processes; and ongoing capacity maintenance to maintain relationships with stakeholders.

The brief then explores three frameworks and theories to inform the strategies advocates can take across the types of implementation advocacy.

·       Understanding Bureaucracy outlines the unique contexts, motivations, and incentives in bureaucratic organizations to inform strategies for engaging with government agencies and their actors.

·       Understanding Policy Implementation examines the levels of conflict and ambiguity characterizing a policy context to strategize about taking a top-down, bottom-up, or hybrid approach to policy implementation.

·       Understanding Theories of Democracy explores how and when to most effectively engage and mobilize the public in implementation advocacy efforts.

Beyond the Win provides an important contribution to advocates, funders, and evaluators in the less-frequently theorized arena of policy implementation. Not only does the brief provide advocates with a framework for strategy—but it offers a common language for other key stakeholders like funders and evaluators to communicate about and measure the work to assess progress and support course corrections. For more information or to download the full brief, visit