As Nepal passes through a prolonged political stalemate, it faces a lack of assertion of national will in regard to vital policy issues that have immediate as well as long-term implications for the lives of ordinary citizens. As the crisis of legitimacy deepens on the part of the state institutions, it becomes more and more urgent on the part of responsible citizenry to engage in efforts that safeguard public interest. Furthermore, the existing modus operandi of policy-making—involving very limited domestic consultation and engagement—is more than likely to lead to the development and enforcement of policies without enough scrutiny.
Taking note of the present challenges of the policy process in Nepal, ASD has been working with individual policy enthusiast through Policy Fellowship Program and policy researchers/experts through Policy Networks. The aim of the policy program is to develop the capacity of national institutions and repository of knowledge on policy issues, and nurturing of a community of committed individuals and organizations, who could deliberate and contest on policy issues and offer credible alternatives.
ASD started working on public policy issues since 2010. It facilitated the policy network from 2011 and started a pilot policy fellowship program in 2012.