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Understanding and addressing the constraints to and information needs for evidence based policy in Ghana

Civil society activism over socio-economic rights issues in Ghana has increased significantly. National-level coalitions addressing gender, water, forestry, mining and broadcast rights for example have emerged. These augment traditional “membership” movements focused on labour, student, disabled, gender and other rights. The success of this surge of activism could transform Ghana 's civic and political culture and accelerate the realisation of the 1992 Republican Constitution.

The collapse of promising coalitions such as “Sisters' Keepers” and the “National Resources Platform” suggest the lack of consistent capacity to plan, implement, monitor and evaluate their campaigns. In addition the use of empirical data to inform these campaigns may, in many cases, be limited leading to problematic policy formulation.

This ‘collaborative project' between Civic Response and ODI aimed to provides case-study material on, and improve ODI's understanding of, the ways in which environmental CSOs in Ghana use research to promote policy and ways in which constraints that they face in doing so can be tackled. Through the action research methods which will be used, this project also aims to engage in capacity building of the CSOs involved.

Cecilia Luttrell