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Fair and equitable research partnerships case study: Tom Kariuki

Funding for research in international development often includes a focus on fair and equitable partnerships. Academics from the global North are increasingly encouraged by funders to include academic partners based in the global South and civil society practitioners in their research projects. But achieving this is complicated: partnership and research are both political. This case study is one of a set of resources that has been designed to help academics, NGOs, CSOs, research brokers and funders put principles for fair and equitable research partnerships into practice. The case study explores insights from Tom Kariuki of the African Academy of Sciences (AAS). Tom describes the vision of the AAS and the evolution of the Alliance for Accelerating Excellence in Science in Africa (AESA), an agenda-setting and funding platform. He reflects on the impact of shifting the centre of gravity for African science to Africa, issues of trust which limit funders’ interest in devolving fund management to African organisations, and the importance of investing in institutional capacity to enable sustainable research leadership in Africa.

Ellis-Hadwin Health Legacy briefing

The Health Legacy Theory of Change tests the assumption that the Christian Aid Community Health approach is appropriate and effective for fragile states and supply and resource challenged settings. Expected outcomes of the Health Legacy programme: CA has an evidence based understanding of how to ensure stronger, integrated health services in fragile states and supply and resource challenged settings. CA has an evidence based understanding of how to ensure improved gender attitudes and changed social norms in fragile states and supply and resource challenged settings. CA has an evidence based understanding of how to ensure accountable, inclusive and responsive health systems in fragile states and supply and resource challenged settings. CA staff and partners have the funding and technical capacity and evidence needed to sustain the implementation of the CH Framework. The realisation of these outcomes will fulfil the objective that ‘the Community Health Framework is appropriate and effective for fragile states and supply and resource challenged settings’. The Expected Impact of achieving this objective is that through our programmes in fragile states and supply and resource challenged settings, ‘Citizens are accessing appropriate, effective, quality, timely and affordable health services that are responsive to their needs’. The expected Impact will contribute to an Overall Expected Impact of ‘Improvement in health outcomes’.

Research methodology: guide to process tracing and realist evaluation

Process tracing was first trialled as a new approach within a series of theory-based evaluations of Christian Aid’s governance portfolio in 2015. The aim was specifically to understand and evidence how Christian Aid and its partners’ accountability practices were contributing to building more (downwardly) accountable relationships more broadly in the context of Bangladesh. The evaluation team added elements of realist evaluation to their evaluation design, in order to allow for greater flexibility of the methodology and ‘user-friendliness’ of the findings. ‘Flexibility’ because selection of methodology in this case preceded the final agreement on evaluation questions, and combining the two different methodologies would provide more room for the evaluators to adapt and tailor the approach based on the eventually defined questions; greater ‘user-friendliness’ due to realist evaluation’s focus on potentially more actionable ‘what works where for whom?’ questions that would complement the more theoretical ‘tracing’ of competing explanations through process tracing.  This guide focusses primarily on the steps necessary to conduct process tracing but includes a brief section on how and where to combine this with realist evaluation. There is a list of selected references at the end of the document for those interested in further reading. Related research Bangladesh: accountable governance - a theory-based approach (process tracing)

Sierra Leone - strengthening health systems parliamentary briefing

Discussed during parliamentary debate in 2014 on strengthening health systems in developing countries and development in Sierra Leone and Liberia.