Event: Lessons from a decade’s research on poverty

16/03/2016 - 09:00 to 18/03/2016 - 17:00

Lessons from a Decade’s Research on Poverty: Innovation, Engagement and Impact Conference

The last decade of development research and practice has been shaped by global agendas such as the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and painstaking work to build a consensus around the new SDGs. The ‘Lessons from a Decade’s Research on Poverty: Innovation, Engagement and Impact’ conference took place from 16-18 March in Pretoria, South Africa to highlight the full breadth of research carried out during the lifetime of the Joint Fund for Poverty Alleviation Research. The conference came at a seminal point in time to reflect and identify key learning and knowledge which could help position researchers to more effectively respond to development policy agendas.

Hosted by The Impact Initiative, the event included those researchers who are supported from the Joint Fund’s 139 projects and their partner organisations, donors, policy actors and practitioners. Attendees shared learning, forged new connections and built a shared vision for the future of development-related social science research. The lessons from this event also speak clearly to the wider development community of the importance of underpinning decision making processes with sound and relevant research.

Session Summaries and Materials

The ‘Lessons from a Decade’s Research on Poverty: Innovation, Engagement and Impact’ conference included researchers who are supported from the Joint Fund’s 139 projects and their partners, donors, policy actors and practitioners.

Attendees shared learning, forged new connections and built a shared vision for the future of development related social science research.

The session summaries contain the lessons from the event and speak clearly to the wider development community of the importance of underpinning decision making processes with sound and relevant research.

[Download PDF 1.13Mb]

Conference materials

A series of short films of top tips on getting from research to impact.

  • Plan for impact from the start
  • Involve stakeholders in the research process
  • Understand the political landscape you operate in
  • Make your research accessible
  • Be flexible and open to change

 

A short film Highlights, reflections and learnings from the conference

Presentations can be downloaded via slideshare

Event photographs are available in the Impact Initiative Flickr album

Conference advisory panel

·        Dominic Glover (chair) – Institute of Development Studies, Brighton
Prof. Patricia Justino
 – Institute of Development Studies, Brighton
Dr Gerry Bloom – Institute of Development Studies, Brighton
Prof. Ana María Ibáñez – Faculty of Economics, University of the Andes
Dr Andrew Long
 – Department for International Development
Dr Nina Marshall -  Economic and Social Research Council
Prof. Gina Porter – Dept of Anthropology, Durham University
Prof. Pauline Rose
 – Faculty of Education, University of Cambridge
Dr Lauren Winch
 – Economic and Social Research Council·  

Plenary speakers

Prof. Ben Cousins (PLAAS, South Africa) about his experience of achieving impacts on policy and practice through his research, with the provisional title ‘“It’s all just politics” – the Role of Research in Development Policy and Practice’

Dr. Rob Hope (Oxford) about ‘Translating research ideas into water security impacts for the poor in rural Kenya’ with a particular emphasis on ‘five years of research innovation’ and ‘reflections from a bumpy journey’.

Prof. Pat Pridmore (UCL Institute of Education) about ‘Increasing municipal governance to tackle the drivers of child malnutrition’ – focusing on engagement with policy and practice.

Key panel discussions framed, challenged and stimulated the dialogue on the lessons from the last decade’s research on poverty. Sessions addressed the co-construction of research with communities; research as political scrutiny and on the informal economy and crisis recovery, and much more. It delved into the challenges and successes of research uptake; exploring the themes of gender, disability, and health and nutrition, and included a session on methods.

Academics and practitioners leading these sessions included Gina Porter (Durham University)Emma Crewe (School of Oriental and African Studies, SOAS), Mungai Lenneiye (Zimbisa, Zimbabwe) and Diana Coates (Development Research Uptake in Sub-Saharan Africa, DRUSSA).