There has been a huge increase in the quantity and quality of data, evidence, and analysis about African policy. But despite extensive evidence that development research can improve public policy, experience is showing that it isn’t influencing policy as much as it should.
So what’s going on?
The African Evidence Informed Policy Forum aims to answer that very question.
On 6-7 March in Nairobi, Kenya, the Think Tank Initiative (TTI), supported by the Mastercard Foundation, will examine the African policy landscape and share what has worked to influence policy, and why. Building on previous work, it will bring together top representatives of think tanks, donors, policymakers, young researchers, civil society, the private sector, and other stakeholders to examine the African policy landscape and consider how best to meet this challenge – have a look at the agenda here and join in the conversation as it develops next week.
Development research, done effectively, can improve public policy and help accelerate development progress. However, experience also indicates that in many African countries data, evidence and analysis fail to significantly inform public policy processes. In such cases, how best can researchers, policy makers and other stakeholders bring timely, relevant, and reliable new knowledge to bear on policy decisions in Africa?
The forum brings together big names in the evidence-informed policymaking (EIPM) community to focus on these questions, and look ahead. Ian Goldman, Acting Deputy Director General, Evidence and Knowledge Systems in the Department of Planning, Monitoring & Evaluation of the Government of South Africa will kick things off with the Keynote Address. Session 2 will cover ‘The evolving context for use of evidence in policy-making in Africa’, featuring six great speakers:
- Rasheed Draman, African Center for Parliamentary Affairs (ACEPA), Ghana
- Siziwe Ngcwabe, Africa Evidence Network (AEN), Africa Centre for Evidence (ACE), South Africa
- Hon. Dr. Makali Mulu, Member of Parliament and Chair of the Evidence Informed Policy Caucus, Kenya
- Sarah Lucas, Global Development and Population, William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, USA
- Tausi Kida, Economic and Social Research Foundation (ESRF), Tanzania
Over the rest of the 8 Sessions more than two dozen Africa policy specialists will appear at the Forum. For updates follow R2A here on Research to Action. You can learn more about the event by downloading the conference app – sign up, browse speakers and programme, meet other participants and join the conversation at #AfricaEvidence and @TTI_ITT before and during the event.
About the Think Tank Initiative
The Think Tank Initiative is helping to strengthen 43 policy research institutions in 20 developing countries over 10 years through a mix of core funding and support for capacity development. The result: these organizations are better positioned to deliver high quality research, operate more sustainably, and engage meaningfully with key stakeholders. Follow the initiative at @TTI_ITT on Twitter.
About the Mastercard Foundation
The Mastercard Foundation works with visionary organizations to provide greater access to education, skills training and financial services for people living in poverty, primarily in Africa. As one of the largest private foundations, its work is guided by its mission to advance learning and promote financial inclusion to create an inclusive and equitable world. Based in Toronto, its independence was established by Mastercard when the Foundation was created in 2006. For more information, please visit www.mastercardfdn.org. Follow the Foundation at @MastercardFdn on Twitter.