The Think Tank Initiative have recently published 48 stories of influence to document the changes their work is supporting. This blog (1of2) reflects on the approach used to develop these and other stories of influence.
Monitoring and evaluation
It’s not easy to measure the impact of development research in bringing about positive change. It’s even harder to show how communications efforts, and expenditure, helps to achieve both research objectives, and development outcomes. This section aims to offer key resources and insights to help support better monitoring and evaluation of research uptake activities.
There are many (brilliant and essential) initiatives around better linking academic research and policy such as 3ie, DRUSSA and Research Impact. However it is not just research-generated ‘knowledge’ that does and should inform development policy.
David Olson discusses lessons learned from organizing the second peer virtual learning session for African think tanks in the Think Tank Policy Engagement and Communications Program.
In this blog-post, Henna Mahmood, outlines five improvements achieved to-date by Anglophone African think tanks participating in the Think Tank Initiative’s PEC Program.
James Georgalakis offers insight from a series of workshops in Nepal, as part of the Think Tanks Initiative’s Policy Engagement and Communications Programme, on the development of institutional level engagement strategies.
Sparkwise is an online tool that allows you to create interactive and dynamic dashboards to display all of your website and social media statistics and metrics…in one place and for free!
Learning from one of IDSs latest ‘Practice Papers in Brief’provides some insights from conducting a Qualitative Document Analysis (QDA) on policy documents for the rural water sector.
Alternative metrics tools are a new way to track and measure the social impact of research in real time. Altmetrics tracks research via social media uptake, ciatation counts, mentions or bookmarks, attention in blogs and even Wikipedia posts.
Altmetrics (alternative metrics) are being hailed as a novel way to track the less tangible social impacts of research. Importantly too, altmetrics may provide a powerful tool to remedy the underrepresentation of Southern research in bibliometric data sets.
Universities are leading the formation of an ‘impact industry’ in the UK. After the DESCRIBE Project’s Future of Impact Conference, James Harvey argues that there is a clear case for more dialogue between professionals operating in this area.
In his latest post, Andrew Clappison reflects upon the discussion that took place during the Future of Impact Conference, and encourages us to think about the value of impact beyond the UK’s Research Excellence Framework (REF)
In this post, James Harvey explores some difficult and unanswered questions on research ‘impact’, such as “How deep is our understanding of influence itself?” and “Do we really have the processes in place to detect influence at all?”