At IDS, we believe that evidence-based research plays a vital role in bringing about a more equitable and sustainable world. And to achieve this, we…
7 principles for doing meaningful research communications
I am interested in engaging people with research through communication, and also in whether or how this activity can support evidence-based dialogue and decision making. I currently oversee and lead communication and engagement strategy and implementation for the Coalition for Religious Equality and Inclusive Development (CREID) and the Action for Empowerment and Accountability (A4EA) research programme. Communication, marketing and online content development When I begun working on Communications and Engagement work over ten years ago, I was seconded to The Guardian, contributing to the development and launch of its award-winning Guardian Global Development site. Since then I have gained considerable experience in social media engagement and content development, including: Developing materials for and delivering in-house training to staff, students and partners on publishing and promoting blogs, media engagement and Writing for the Web Awarded a CIM-accredited Diploma in Digital Marketing (2013-14). Working on the dissemination and promotion of acclaimed IDS Bulletin New Roles for Communication in Development (2012) Launching and having editorial oversight of the Impact and Learning blog (2011), and leading a team that delivered social reporting for the International Initiative for Impact Evaluation’s seminal Mind the Gap; From Policy to Impact conference in Cuernavaca, Mexico (2011), In 2015, I led on the marketing strategy for re-launching the IDS Bulletin as an open access journal. Launched in 2016, its new website achieved nearly 400,000 downloads in its first year, four times greater than anticipated. Project management in communication output design and production I have project-managed the design and production of the IDS Annual Review (2013, 2014 and 2015) as well as leading on the design of the IDS Strategy 2015-2020 (short version) (PDF). In recent years, I have developed an interest and built my experience in translating research concepts and findings into alternative visual formats such as infographics and animations. Here are some examples of infographics: Precarious lives or why it’s vital to protect the right to food in the face of market volatility (online, interactive research summary) Can the Private Sector Tackle Undernutrition Amongst the Poorest People? Power, Violence, Citizenship and Agency project (PDF) Here are some examples of animations: Time to care (created with Studio Syrup) Empowerment and accountability in fragile, conflict and violence-affected settings (working with an MA student on Media Practice for Development and Social Change) Background I have been at IDS since May 2007 and have been working on communications, engagement and impact from 2010. I was elected as a staff trustee to the IDS Board (from June 2016 to July 2019). Prior to that, I worked for Citizens Advice Scotland on public affairs and social policy in Scotland in the areas of consumer debt, housing and employment rights. I graduated from the University of Edinburgh with a MA (Hons) in Arabic with politics and Middle Eastern history.
Research to Action (R2A) is a website catering for the strategic and practical needs of people trying to improve the uptake of development research, in particular those funded by DFID.
We have structured the site and populated it with material that we think will be immediately useful to this audience, but also to development researchers in general who would like to be more strategic and effective in their communications.
R2A is produced by a small editorial team, led by CommsConsult. We welcome suggestions for and contributions to the site.