Name : Amy Gresham
Placement host : Forest Resources Policy team in Welsh Government
I recently completed a three-month PhD placement with the Forest Resources Policy team in Welsh Government. The placement was completed online, working from home. I spent most of the placement working on documentation for a public consultation for the National Forest for Wales programme, which is very high-profile policy so was an exciting project to work on, especially as I am based in North Wales. I felt I was able to provide meaningful contributions to policy documents that will be important for the progression of the programme, which was really satisfying. Having never written documents like this before, it was interesting to explore a new style of writing. I had the opportunity to present my work to the wider Landscapes, Nature & Forestry team in Welsh Government, which allowed me to see how my work fitted into the wider context of Forest policy. Another large portion of my placement was spent helping to develop online engagement tools for the consultation, which was another new experience for me. I also attended various online meetings to discuss different aspects of the National Forest and helped to design infographic materials. Being involved in numerous pieces of work surrounding the National Forest programme has allowed me to engage with lots of different teams within Welsh Government, as well as external collaborators and stakeholders.
This placement has allowed me to explore the possibility of working in policy following my PhD and has showed me the processes behind development of evidence-based policy. These will be useful insights for my future career, as well as my PhD write-up. I’ve really enjoyed contributing to such a unique programme as the National Forest for Wales, and I look forward to seeing how it develops in the coming years.