Policymakers are increasingly facing the challenge of scaling empirical insights. This study provides a theoretical lens into the science of how to use science. Through a simple model, we highlight three elements of the scale‐up problem: (1) when does evidence become actionable; (2) properties of the population; and (3) properties of the situation. Until these three areas are fully understood, the threats to scalability will render any scaling exercise as particularly vulnerable. Accordingly, our work represents a call for more policy‐based evidence, whereby the nature and extent of the various threats to scalability are explored in the original research program.
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