What is policy? How do we do or make policy? Where and who with? What is it for, anyway, and what difference does it make? Good questions, though you wouldn’t be asking them if you didn’t already know that answering them isn’t easy. You’ve read and heard a lot of stuff which seems to be called ‘policy’, and some other stuff which seems to be about ‘the policy process’, and you still have these questions. Forgive me, then, for wondering whether questions and answers are going to take us very far. I’d really like to know why you’re asking, because then I think we’d get into conversation. Because we’ve never met, I’m going to have to imagine what you’d say and what I’d say in return. So what follows here is an imagined and implied conversation, in which you tell me the story of your first foray into policy making and I try to make sense of it…

Source: Global Mental Heath: Trauma and Recovery, A companion guide for field and clinical care of traumatized people worldwide, Cambridge MA: Harvard Program in Refugee Trauma