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VakaYiko grants

The biggest challenges of the 21st century - climate change, population growth, food security, cyber security, to name a few - require policymakers to access, evaluate and use research evidence from a range of disciplines in the formulation of policy.

The VakaYiko Consortium is a three-year project to build the capacity for use of research evidence by policymakers. Capacity in this context refers to the behaviours, skills and attitudes that enable the use of research evidence to support decision making.

The VakaYiko grants scheme supports practitioners in low and middle income countries to build capacity for research use. We are interested in projects that enhance our understanding of how policymakers can be supported, through practical measures, to make more effective use of evidence. Practitioners in developing countries are better placed to adapt approaches to resource constrained environments, make them relevant to local contexts, and react quickly to political changes. Such practice-based knowledge has an important role to play in the design of interventions to enhance access and use of research evidence in decision making.



Projects supported through VakaYiko grants

ACTS is a leading intergovernmental policy research think tank working on issues of science, technology, innovation and sustainable development in Africa. Its mission is to enlarge the range of policy choices for Africa’s sustainable development. For more information, please see:


About the project

The Kenya Climate Science, Technology and Policy Roundtables project works to help bridge the gap between research and policy making on climate change in Kenya and to strengthen the links between Kenyan climate policymakers, researchers and think tanks. It does this through a series of roundtables bringing together researchers, policymakers and other stakeholders to debate climate policy, and a job-shadowing scheme partnering ACTS scientists with high-level policymakers.


Related publications

Case study: Kenyan roundtables support cross-sectoral climate-change work

News story: Fourth roundtable on climate change in Kenya focuses on climate finance

News story: VakaYiko-funded climate policy roundtable takes place in Kenya

Blog post: Climate- change scien roundtables support open  dialogue for stakeholders and policy makers in Kenya by Winnie Khaemba (ACTS)

The Ateneo de Manila University is a Filipino Catholic Jesuit university that seeks to preserve, extend and communicate truth and apply it to human development and the preservation of the environment. For more information, please see:


About the project                   

The Ateneo is working in partnership with the Union of Local Authorities in the Philippines (ULAP) to deliver training workshops to policymakers working in education at the sub-national government level. These trainings are being delivered in the two provinces of Sama and Nueva Vizcaya, and are complemented through online mentoring. A roundtable at the end of the project will bring the participants together to present their experiences.

Related publications
Case study: Improving capacity for evidence-informed education policy in the Philippines 
Blog post: The politics of evidence in policy making by Ann Lan Kagahastian-Candelaria
Research paper: Evidence for what? Exploring the definition and political value of evidence-informed policy making according to Philippine Mayors. 

The Centre for Public Policy Alternatives (CPPA) is an independent, non-partisan public policy think-tank based in Lagos, Nigeria. CPPA aims to help sub-Saharan African governments, institutions, and businesses create innovative data-driven policy solutions to development challenges. For more information, please see:


About the project                   

The Improving Information Literacy for Urban Service Planning and Delivery (INFO-LIT) project works to build the capacity of policymakers to use evidence at the local government level and improve general information literacy. CPPA is working with the Public Service Staff Development Centre (PSSDC) in Lagos to develop and deliver training on data collection and utilization to staff working in Health, Solid Waste Management, and Sanitation agencies.
Related publications
Case study: Improving information literacy for urban service planning and delivery at local government level in Nigeria 
News story: VakaYiko grant supports use of data in service delivery in Nigeria
Research paper: What is the evidence on evidence-informed policy making? Lessons from the international conference on Evidence-Informed Policy Making 

The Gender Centre for Research and Training (GCRT), Sudan is a pioneering non-governmental institution working to ensure gender mainstreaming in development programmes and government policies. It combines research and training with advocacy and networking in order to raise awareness of gender inequalities and equip Sudanese women with the skills needed to access decision-making structures.


About the project                  

The GCRT is delivering a series of training workshops informed by focus group discussions to policymakers in ministries in order to strengthen the use of evidence and gender mainstreaming in the decision making process. The GCRT will also host public conferences bringing together policymakers, journalists, researchers and civil society organisations to facilitate discussions surrounding the use of evidence in policy making. 

Related publications
Case Study: Capacity building for decision makers to use evidence in policy making in Sudan
News story: VakaYiko grant supports evidence-informed policy making training in Sudan
Photo of the month: INASP's Clara Richards facilitated a workshop in Sudan's capital, Khartoum, with members of the organization Sudanese Women in Science

Jimma University is a public higher-educational institution and Ethiopia's first innovative Community Oriented Education Institution of higher learning. The University trains higher calibre professionals at undergraduate and postgraduate levels through its innovative Community Based Education (CBE). For more information, please see:


About the project                   

Jimma University’s College of Public Health and Medical Sciences is working with the Ethiopian Federal Ministry of Health to build the capacity of policymakers in the Ministry to make effective use of research in health policy planning. Trainings on accessing, appraising, and using research in the development of health policies and guidelines are being delivered and will be followed up by a mentoring scheme partnering policymakers with health experts.
Related publications
Case Study: Increasing evidence use among Ethiopia’s health planners and policymakers 
News story: VakaYiko-funded course improves use of evidence in Ethiopia’s health policies

Politics & Ideas (P&I) is an Argentinian think net. It is a joint initiative of researchers and practitioners to co-produce and share innovative and relevant knowledge linking ideas and politics in developing and emerging economies. For more information, please see


About the project

The project “Leaders of Change” works to develop Latin American policymakers’ capacity to promote the use of knowledge in policy. A six-week online course was developed with guidance from eight senior policymakers in Latin America focusing on developing the technical abilities of participants, as well as how to approach common challenges to strengthening evidence in policy-making institutions.


Related publications
Case study: Online course promotes the use of knowledge and evidence in policy
News story:Scholarship for online course on using knowledge in policy making in Africa 
Research paper: Knowledge into policy: Going beyond "Context Matters" by Vanesa Weyrauch in collaboration with Leandro Echt and Shahinda Suliman 
Blog post: Voices from the ground: Policy makers challenges to the use of evidence by Vanesa Weyrauch and Leandro Echt 
Blog post: Policy makers sharing online spaces: An opportunity to learn and foster a culture of use of knowledge in politics by Vanesa Weyrauch and Leandro Echt
Blog post: Knowledge into policy: Going beyond "Context Matters" by Vanesa Weyrauch
Blog post: Context: Why focus on public institutions and on politics? 
Blog post: Going beyond "Context matters"
Blog post: Framework to get knowledge into policy. Dimension #1: Macro Context: Structural factors that draw clear lines
Blog post: Our focus for context: Government institutions

The Peruvian Alliance for the Use of Evidence hosted by Universidad del Pacifico is inspired by the UK Alliance for Useful Evidence. The Alliance is made up of a group of individuals and organisations interested in promoting debate on the necessary methods, tools and capacities that generate a public culture that prioritises critical use of evidence in policy making.


About the project                   

The Alliance is organising a series of meetings and public events with members of organisations from the public and private sector, civil society organizations and the international community in order to discuss how to use evidence in public policy in Peru.


Related publications

Case study: Creating space for evidence based policy in Peru



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