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Setting Agendas and Developing Policies


Policymaking can be a complex process with many factors influencing agenda setting, policy development and policy implementation. By enrolling in this course, participants will have a better understanding of when and how to intervene.

Course objectives:

  1. to develop your knowledge about the frameworks and resources available to support health- and social-system policymakers and stakeholders in their efforts to set agendas and develop policies, and to influence agendas and policy development;
  2. to examine the attitudes that are supportive of setting agendas and developing policies, and influencing agendas and policy development; and
  3. to enhance your skills in setting agendas and developing policies and influencing agendas and policy development.

Online only

Online course

Participants are granted access to the online course for 30 days. Access to the course will be provided within 5 business days, following confirmation of payment.

Participants will engage with the full range of course material to meet the course objectives, but also learn the questions to ask about when and how to intervene in the policy process and about being systematic and transparent in finding and using available information to understand agendas, policy development and policy implementation. Additionally, participants will enhance their skills in examining and describing how governments have responded to the unique characteristics of healthcare and the factors that influence agenda setting, policy development and policy implementation, and in communicating the insights gained from analyses of these processes. By filling out the registration information, you're agreeing to our terms and conditions.

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Online and in-class workshops

Custom workshops

Strengthen your team by hosting one of our customized training sessions on how to support the use of evidence, citizen values and stakeholder insights in policymaking. Our training programs build on the experience of Forum Director John Lavis in conducting more than 130 workshops in more than 30 countries. We’ve now trained health- and social-system policymakers, stakeholders, citizens, students and researchers from more than 60 countries.

Each session is tailored by experts at the McMaster Health Forum to meet your organization’s specific needs.

Contact Kaelan Moat at to organize a session for your team.

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Combination of online course and in-person interactive workshop

This format is suitable for organizations interested in offering in–person workshops for their constituents and sponsoring a group of 10 to 40 individuals. The online course is typically a pre-requisite for the in-person interactive workshop. Participants are granted advanced access to the online course for up to 30 days, and then enrolled in an in-person interactive workshop with one of the McMaster Health Forum’s expert staff to further support individuals in working through the material provided in the online course. Workshops can be scheduled for 1-1.5 hours, a half day, one day or two days or five days.

Prices vary depending on several factors inherent in the customization process with online/in-person combination cohorts, such as the length of the workshop, the number of participants, the number of facilitators required,  and location and travel expenses.

The date and venue of the workshop will be selected based on the organization’s needs and the course instructors’ availability. Please contact us at to discuss your interest.

Email to register