The paper argues for a need of rethinking the interaction between social science and socio-economic policy analysis on the one hand and policy making and implementation on the other. The interaction, traditionally conceived as a variant expert-client interaction should rather be conceived in terms of an expert-to-expert dialogue. The inevitable conclusion is that any understanding of the impact of (social) scientific research on policy must understand the cultural context of the interaction. A suggested avenue to incorporate the effects of scientific advice on policy making is seeing such analysis as part of the policy system’s or policy maker’s ‘innovation system’. This view has immediate consequences for the organisation of the science/policy interface.