We are celebrating 5 years of making evidence matter in Africa’s development!
3 March 2016
Author: Rose Oronje

We are thrilled, and at the same time humbled, to be marking five years of making evidence matter in development efforts in Africa.

Established in 2010, the African Institute for Development Policy (AFIDEP) is an African-led, regional non-profit policy think-tank established in 2010 to help bridge the gap between research, policy and practice in development efforts in Africa.

The motivation for the formation of AFIDEP is the fact that research evidence is not optimally used or considered in decision-making. The reasons for this are many, ranging from the fact that research evidence is fragmented in many sources and not well synthesized and packaged for users, to weak capacity and motivation of research users to find and utilise existing evidence for better policy and programme decisions.

Our vision is therefore to make research evidence matter in African-driven development, and we achieve this by translating and enabling utilization of evidence in policymaking, primarily in the fields of population change, sustainable development, and health systems strengthening in Africa.

Over the last five years, AFIDEP has contributed significantly to sustainable development in Africa by enabling the formulation and implementation of policies and programmes that are informed by sound research evidence. Specifically, we have:

  • Conducted rigorous evidence analyses and syntheses that have generated compelling evidence that we have used to galvanise support and the adoption of the demographic dividend concept as the driving paradigm for development efforts in Africa, both at the regional and national levels
  • Designed and implemented an innovative capacity building programme for enabling increased evidence use that has not only increased the commitment and actions of African governments to enabling evidence use, but also built hands-on skills among government technocrats in finding, appraising, synthesising and applying evidence in decision-making
  • Repackaged existing evidence on adolescent sexual and reproductive health challenges in Africa and used the evidence to generate increased political commitment and focus on these issues in Kenya and Malawi
  • Strengthened our institutional structures, systems and procedures to ensure effective and efficient delivery of our programmes, including forming and operationalising a full Board of Directors, and developing and adopting various financial and administrative policies and guidelines.

To check out some of our key dance milestones, click here.

Our Strategic Plan 2015-2019 outlines our key areas of focus in the next five years.

To celebrate this important milestone, we are conducting a number of activities including:

  1. Co-hosting a Science Policy Café on the theme: “˜Unlocking the Demographic Dividend and Power of Youth to Propel Kenya’s Socioeconomic Transformation Agenda’. The Café will be held at the Intercontinental Hotel in Nairobi on Monday March 7, 2016, 7.00am-10.30am. Café will be co-hosted by the United States International University (USIU). Attendance is by invitation only. See more details on the Café here.
  2. Hosting a celebratory dinner on Monday March 7, 2016 from 6.00pm-8.30pm at the Nairobi Serena Hotel. Attendance is by invitation only.
  3. Media commentary on various development issues that we work on. One such commentary titled: New syllabus should focus on skills was published on by the Daily Nation and February 25, 2016 and can be accessed here. More commentaries and TV interviews will be coming up in the next week.

We would like to thank all the African governments whom we have and continue to work with, and development partners who have continued to support our work.

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