Research and Evidence
CCW has adopted the following pragmatic
definition of research - It is the gathering and analysis of
environmental and socio-economic data or information to examine a
concept or hypothesis. It also includes work which might also be
defined as surveillance and monitoring.
diver, photo ©CCW
Research also includes selected activities to help
knowledge-sharing, such as systematic reviews of evidence.
Evidence is an integrated expression of the findings and the
interpretation of the research and advice generated.
We believe that these definitions are in tune with the approach
adopted by the Joint Nature Conservation Committee (JNCC) and our
sister conservation agencies.
CCW is a research and evidence based organisation.
Building the environmental evidence base is vital for the
delivery of CCW’s remit as an environmental advisor to the Welsh
and UK Government.
It provides us with essential knowledge and tools to contribute
to the conservation and management of the environment as well as
forming a reliable foundation for policy development.
Our evidence work supports our day-to-day operations and core
In particular it is essential for the delivery of the following
- Achievement of Biodiversity Action Plan targets;
- Informs casework practices and decisions;
- Supports our advice to government and other
- Provides monitoring data for conservation site condition
assessments, management and state of the environment
- Contributes to contingency planning;
- Informs selection of conservation sites;
- Helps to deliver the monitoring, management and restoration of
designated sites and the conservation of the wider countryside,
coast and marine environment; and
- Informs the prediction of and adaptation to future
The majority of our research and evidence is managed,
co-ordinated and communicated by the staff within the Evidence and
Advice Directorate, who through their project management roles set
standards for the quality of the research.
CCW has adopted a number of key guiding principles related to
research processes and standards. We are committed to being -
- Outcome focused – CCW carries out survey, research and policy
formulation in order to achieve real changes in the state and
management of the Welsh environment, and in people’s ability to
engage with, understand and care about and for it;
- Outward-facing – CCW evidence work is carried out in a wider
Welsh, UK and international context;
- Aligned – with the statutory requirements of the UK Government
and Welsh Government;
- Customer-conscious – CCW has numerous other relationships with
public sector, voluntary and private sector partners with a keen
interest in the outputs of our work;
- Transparent - CCW seeks to make available as much of its
evidence programme as possible within the constraints of Data
Protection and commerciality. We also actively pursue transparency
with respect to the content and direction of the programme
- Procured - CCW procures much of its technical and scientific
support from the academic and private consultancy world. We do so
using open, competitive and fair procurement processes;
- Capacity building – All CCW evidence work, including when
procured using competitive tendering, aims to assist the supplier,
whether private sector, academic or Third sector, to build their
capacity and expertise as a result of their working with CCW to
become even better at helping us safeguard the Welsh
- Culturally sensitive and sympathetic – CCW aims to meet the
highest standards of bilingualism consistent with the needs for
stringent science, and to have regard to the social and economic
well-being of the communities affected by our work.
Our research and evidence programme is planned and reviewed on
an annual basis as part of our wider corporate planning