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Rethinking research partnerships: discussion guide and toolkit

This discussion guide and toolkit provides ideas and approaches to enable you to think through your research partnerships; to encourage you to critically engage with issues such as the roles different actors play in partnership; and what types of evidence are valued, used and produced. We intend that it will open up space for more voices, perspectives and knowledge to inform research design, implementation and communication. Christian Aid co-led with the Open University on the production of this resource, drawing from a seminar series that brought together academics and NGO staff to reflect on their experiences of research partnerships. This consortium engaged with questions of participation and the politics of evidence in academic-NGO research partnerships. It was funded by the ESRC and this publication is one of the outputs of the series. We don’t expect you to work your way through the guide, but to dip in and out, using the sections that seem relevant and useful to you. It includes some discussion, insights from that emerged from participants in the consortium / seminar series and participatory tools. Please do get in touch with our research, evidence and learning team if you have questions, suggestions or would like to share how you have used the material.

Resilience framework

Our Resilience Framework sets out how we work with partners to support communities to identify the risks they face, access resources and effectively to achieve sustainable results.

Minimum Standards for Age and Disability Inclusion in Humanitarian Action

Humanitarian actors must respond in a way that considers the needs of all people affected by a crisis.

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)

Intended nationally determined contributions: influencing debate

This toolkit provides an approach on how we can engage with intended nationally determined contribution discussions at a national level.