Knowledge translation for childhood poverty Nicola Jones, PhD. Cairo, Jan 2009.

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  • Knowledge translation for childhood poverty

    Nicola Jones, PhD. Cairo, Jan 2009

  • Overview: Knowledge translation principlesChild-sensitive knowledge translation Four case studiesConclusions

  • Tackling the invisibility of childhood poverty

    Childhood poverty is routinely marginalised in debates on development and poverty alleviation

    Persistent knowledge and awareness gaps of ways macro development and poverty-reduction policies directly and indirectly affect childrens experiences with poverty, and contribute to life-course and inter-generational poverty

    However, childhood poverty/ vulnerability is not only more severe than that of adults, but also conceptually distinct

  • Policy engagement based on best practice in knowledge translation

    Key principles of knowledge-development policy interface: Non-linear and dynamic processResearchers and development intermediaries need intent to promote pro-poor change Evidence needs to be robust and policy-relevant in design Knowledge needs to be distilled and framed in context-sensitive Context resonant framing of messages are key Communicative or argumentative approaches to policy advocacy can be taken

  • Knowledge to action cycle

  • But policy engagement also needs to be child-sensitive and requires:

    an understanding of the specificity, multi-dimensionality and dynamic nature of childhood poverty

    an appreciation of direct and indirect effects economic as well as social policies can have on childhood poverty and conceptualising target audiences accordingly

    a recognition of childrens particular depth of voicelessness and the importance of monitoring commitments towards children

    a commitment to supporting childrens participation through extensions and supplements (White, 2007)

    an appreciation of the relational nature of childhood poverty and the often close linkages between gendered poverty and childhood poverty

    a recognition of weakness of child-related govt agencies and a commitment to capacity building and partnership to overcome this

    Photo credit: Jeff Knezovich, ODI: http://www.flickr.com/knezovjb*The hard evidence of many cases supports the claim that intent matters. It matters precisely because the confusions, tensions and accidents of the policy process itself turn out to be so complicated and unpredictable Research will only have a reliable influence on policy if it can survive (ONeil, 2005: 762).

    (Source: CHIP Policy Engagement . Available at: http://www.childhoodpoverty.org/index.php?action=policy

    Understanding of policy making as non-linear and dynamic, as well as the importance of acknowledging and adapting research to differing socio-political and cultural contexts in developing countries as changes arise.

    Examples of these in practice will be explored later with case studies of policy engagement in Kyrgyzstan and a more detailed example of a policy influencing strategy in Ethiopia

    Two defining types of interaction for policy engagement and dissemination of evidence: Argumentative interaction. Critical or combative strategies to build alternative actor networks [and...] dislodge dominant positions and their associated networks (Keeley and Scoones, 2003: 30). Communicative interaction. Attempts to build participatory, consultative partnerships involving research networks, community groups and NGOs, and national and local government stakeholders. A diversity of values, perspectives, and goals are reflected and negotiated (Ibid: 31).These policy engagement strategies will change depending on the specific political and social climate of a given country.

    Positive action at different levels and simultaneously in a range of policy areas Attention to policy implementation as well as policy content Targeting key fora and institutions/departments who make and influence policy Strategically opting for a communicative or argumentative approach to research-informed policy advocacy

    *As described in the article Knowledge Translation at the Canadian Institutes of Health Research : A Primer the idea of a knowledge creation "funnel" conveys the idea that knowledge needs to be increasingly distilled before it is ready for application. The action part of the process can be thought of as a cycle leading to implementation or application of knowledge. In contrast to the knowledge funnel, the action cycle represents the activities that may be needed for knowledge application.

    The idea of a knowledge creation "funnel" conveys the idea that knowledge needs to be increasingly distilled before it is ready for application. The model stressed the importance of synthesis to contextualize and integrate the findings of an individual research study within a larger body of literature. Synthesis can use quantitative or qualitative methods and may take many forms: a literature review; a systematic review following the methods developed by the Cochrane Collaboration; a realist review; a consensus conference or the results from an expert panel. Synthesis is important to be able to create knowledge tools (i.e., provide the data content for incorporation in practice guidelines); it can be used to determine best practice (that needs to be implemented) and to create a context for and establish an evidence base for the knowledge to be translated. Furthermore, it is important to consider and report on the types of evidence used in a synthesisit establishes the credibility and generalizability of the evidence base of the knowledge to be "translated" (Figure 1).

    The steps in the action cycle surrounding the knowledge creation funnel were derived from a theory analysis of planned action theories (Graham, Logan, Harrison, Tetroe, & the KT Theories Research Group, 2007). In this analysis, the researchers searched for planned action modelsthose specifically designed to be used to bring about changein order to explore the theoretical underpinnings of knowledge translation. They excluded classical implementation theories, because, by definition, they are passive and used to retrospectively understand change.(Source: CHIP Policy Engagement . Available at: http://www.childhoodpoverty.org/index.php?action=policy

    equal employment rights: maximising womens human resources for national development, strengthening Korean industry; male protection laws

    Easy for govts in name of national good to endorse childrens rights but not follow up

    Understanding of policy making as non-linear and dynamic, as well as the importance of acknowledging and adapting research to differing socio-political and cultural contexts in developing countries as changes arise.

    Examples of these in practice will be explored later with case studies of policy engagement in Kyrgyzstan and a more detailed example of a policy influencing strategy in Ethiopia

    Two defining types of interaction for policy engagement and dissemination of evidence: Argumentative interaction. Critical or combative strategies to build alternative actor networks [and...] dislodge dominant positions and their associated networks (Keeley and Scoones, 2003: 30). Communicative interaction. Attempts to build participatory, consultative partnerships involving research networks, community groups and NGOs, and national and local government stakeholders. A diversity of values, perspectives, and goals are reflected and negotiated (Ibid: 31).These policy engagement strategies will change depending on the specific political and social climate of a given country.

    Positive action at different levels and simultaneously in a range of policy areas Attention to policy implementation as well as policy content Targeting key fora and institutions/departments who make and influence policy Strategically opting for a communicative or argumentative approach to research-informed policy advocacy

    *

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