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VakaYiko: building capacity to use research evidence

Hero image description: VakaYiko Logo Image license:Creative Commons

The VakaYiko Consortium was a three-year programme working primarily in Ghana, South Africa and Zimbabwe, led by the International Network for the Availability of Scientific Publications (INASP). ODI was a consortium member and the RAPID team led the South African component of the work.

The programme is based on the assumption that for research evidence to be routinely and effectively used in policy-making, at least three factors need to be in place: individuals with the skills to access, evaluate and use research evidence; processes for handling research evidence in policy-making departments; and a facilitating environment that identifies and responds to research uptake needs.

To address these factors in the three countries, VakaYiko aims to:

  • Build the skills of new and existing policy-makers by developing, delivering and embedding courses in evidence-informed policy-making at the civil service training college in Ghana and in key ministries in Zimbabwe.
  • Develop organisational processes that enable policy makers to articulate their research needs and use research more effectively by adapting tools tested and adopted for use in Whitehall to the more resource constrained environment of South Africa.
  • Build the capacity of consortium members to respond to future research uptake needs.
  • Identify what works, when and why in building capacity for research use in developing countries by piloting new approaches and sharing learning.

Consortium members are: Ghana Information Network for Knowledge Sharing (GINKS), Zimbabwe Evidence Informed Policy Making Network (ZEIPNET), Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC), Overseas Development Institute (ODI) and International Network for the Availability of Scientific Publications (INASP).

The programme is funded by DFID under the Building Capacity for Use of Research Evidence (BCURE) programme.


Louise Shaxson, Caroline Cassidy, Ajoy Datta