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DELTAS Africa Initiative Learning Research Programme

LRT supports a series of research programmes addressing a range of health needs. Photo: © 2011, Charlotte Raymond Photography for International AIDS Vaccine Initiative (IAVI)/Flickr
DELTAS aims to produce world-class scientific research that addresses African health and research priorities. Photo: International AIDS Vaccine Initiative (IAVI)/Flickr
The programme also aims to train the next generation of researchers through programmes that support women in science. Photo: © 2011, Charlotte Raymond Photography for International AIDS Vaccine Initiative (IAVI)/Flickr

The Learning Research Programme (LRP) implemented by AFIDEP is part of wider programme by the  Wellcome Trust known as the DELTAS Africa Initiative.  The LRP aims to investigate how best to train and develop world-class researchers, foster their careers and collaborations and promote research uptake into policy. AFIDEP scientists, in partnership with the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine (LSTM) are focused on producing research-based learning from the DELTAS Africa initiative about how to train and develop world-class researchers, foster their careers and collaborations, and promote research uptake. The role of AFIDEP is to support processes that will ensure that research for socio-economic development is needed and that it is used for policy formulation in Africa.

This approach is based on the background that in Africa, research uptake for decision-making is weak due to supply- and demand-side bottlenecks. Much research is untimely, not pro-poor and irrelevant to knowledge needs of decision-makers and the public because of limited interaction between producers and users of research when conceptualising research questions. Supply-side research is fragmented across many scientific journals and researchers lack skills to synthesise and package it appropriately for decision-makers. Another challenge is that research competes with values, politics and personal interests and hence often fails to inform policy decisions. At the same time, policymakers may lack motivation and skills to access, appraise and apply research findings. Furthermore, there is limited evidence about the most effective strategies for closing the gap between research generation, policies and programmes.

The LRP theme coordinated by AFIDEP will implement the following specific activities:

  • Lead the development of theme-specific work plans, milestones and deliverables in consultation with the Principal Investigator (PI), Deputy Principal Investigator (DPI), advisory board and project partners
  • Draft theme-specific publication strategy, ensuring staggered outputs, in consultation with the PI, DPI and advisory board
  • Assist Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine (LSTM) in the advertisement and recruitment of respective PhD student
  • Provide supervision and technical support to the PhD student attached to this theme, ensuring compliance with all relevant organisational and programme policies and procedures
  • Ensure completion of the theme-specific work plans, milestones and deliverables in accordance with agreed timeframes
  • Ensure completion of theme-specific manuscripts in accordance with agreed review and submission dates
  • Participate in programme level meetings, workshops and dissemination activities and/or provide relevant theme-specific information to programme partners as required

Journal article:

Health Research Policy and Systems
Review of published evidence on knowledge translation capacity, practice and support among researchers and research institutions in low- and middle-income countries.

The Developing Excellence in Leadership, Training and Science (DELTAS) Africa initiative is funded by the Wellcome Trust and the UK Department of  International Development to the tune of £65 million.

The LRP, the component implemented by AFIDEP and the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine is supported with £800,000 to produce research-based learning from the DELTAS Africa initiative

Key Details

Dates: February 2016 to Present
Aim:

DELTAS Africa seeks to support African-led development of internationally competitive researchers working across sub-Saharan Africa, headed by world-class leaders. One of its four objectives is to foster engagement with the public and policy stakeholders.

Where: Benin , Botswana , Cameroon , Côte d’Ivoire , Ethiopia , Gabon , Ghana , Kenya , Malawi , Mali , Namibia , Nigeria , Rwanda , Senegal , South Africa , Tanzania , The Gambia , Uganda , Zambia , Zimbabwe
Project Manager:Rose N. Oronje, Ph.D.

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