To give expression to its business of putting research knowledge at the heart of development, the International Network for the Availability of Scientific Publications (INASP) and its partners in Evidence-Informed Policy Making (EIPM) on Tuesday launched the VakaYiko EIPM Toolkit simultaneously in London, Ghana and Zimbabwe via a webinar.
The EIPM Toolkit is a new resource in the field of evidence use in policymaking. It is an adaptable suite of resources created to support civil servants and parliamentary staff to use evidence in policymaking in developing countries. It focuses on finding, evaluating and communicating evidence as well as developing practical implementation plans.
Also included in the Toolkit is a series of corresponding Practical Handbooks for civil servants and parliamentary staff, as well as some associated promotional resources to raise awareness about evidence use in public institutions.
The discussion during the launch was led by Clara Richards, senior programme manager, INASP and Director of the VakaYiko consortium, with Emily Hayter, programme manager, who led the development of the Toolkit, Annelise Dennis, INASP’s in-house Capacity development approach expert and Kirchuffs Atengble, programme coordinator, Ghana Information Network for Knowledge Sharing (GINKS), who piloted the Toolkit with Ghana Civil Service Training School, as discussants.
Speaking on experiences of implementing the EIPM Toolkit in Ghana, Kirchuffs Atengble, said the Civil Service Training Centre (CSTC) in Ghana has added EIPM training course to the training of all civil servants in Ghana.
According to him, GINKS has had three training sessions at the CSTC for 67 civil servants from 22 Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs). One important component of the EIPM training in Ghana, he noted, was the involvement of external speakers with rich experience in the areas of research and policymaking to share their knowledge with participants.
In her presentation, Annelise Dennis mentioned that “we have tried to ensure materials avoid excessive jargons and focus on practicality. Content can be very complex but it’s very practical. In some ways the EIPM Toolkit functions more as a workshop than traditional training course.”
She further noted that the pilot EIPM Toolkit “shifts from trainer-driven to learner-centred training, and training of trainers (ToT) support facilitators. Active engagement of participants is encouraged throughout the process. Participants also contribute to the learning of their fellow learners.”
For her part, Emily Hayter said different people, outside the initial target group, were interested in the EIPM Toolkit.
She said: “EIPM Toolkit had already been used in Ghana, Uganda, Zimbabwe and Sudan. We’ve drawn on experiences of all partners in piloting this resource.”
According to her, the EIPM Toolkit includes training manuals, practical handbooks and other resources (posters, online sources, leaflets) that could be used in many combinations.
Rounding up the discussion, Clara Richards said the EIPM Toolkit was one part of a broader suit of capacity-building interventions from the VakaYiko project.
Source: ISD (Jotie N. Sule)