With the adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development came a new focus on identifying and utilizing new forms of data and evidence from new sources to support efforts to track progress and implement policies. This “data revolution”, which we see as an evidence revolution, requires countries to make evidence informed decision making an imperative.
However, the use of new sources of data and evidence needs to be concurrent with the use of existing sources, some of which are at risk due to financing and lack of adequate, human capital. This keeps the benefits of the evidence revolution out of reach for many African countries and put at risk existing sources of data and evidence for decision making.
This practice is particularly interested in studying ways in which evidence informed policy and decision making can become part of the culture of public sector institutions and an expectation of the general public. Accountable and transparent use of evidence, a strong enabling environment for evidence use, sufficient financing for evidence infrastructure and the requisite skilling of the workforce are all key areas the practice will examine across a number of sectors including Agriculture, Health, Energy and Climate Change.
The Extension Support Program provides evidence-informed interventions that help governments and communities address the yield gaps experienced by smallholder farmers. Through projects like the Village Based Advisors, that address the coverage one extension services, and partnerships with inputs companies that ensure new and improved technologies are available, we make it possible to close that gap and address household food insecurity. Learn more.
Strengthening the enabling environment for evidence informed decision making. This aspect of our work aims to supports improvement in policy and regulatory frameworks to support the emergence or strengthening of a culture of evidence use.
Growth in human capital development. Evidence informed decision making as the norm in the public sector requires adequate coverage of skills in accessing using and sharing evidence within the policy life cycle. This aspect of our work supports innovation in capacity building, design of incentive mechanisms, human resource planning and peer networking for the civi service.
Sustainable financing for evidence. While evidence generation, use and dissemination are core to government, the funding for this is in many instances in constant jeopardy. This aspect of our work aims to support efforts to mobilise domestic resources for sustainable evidence collation and knowledge management infrastructures.