This is a list of my publications, conferences and events:
Contribution Tracing for organisational-wide planning, improved collaboration and evaluative thinking
30th July 2021, “Evaluation. The international journal of theory, research and order practice” by SAGE
In 2015, The Wellcome Trust launched a new strategic approach to its work and created a framework to measure success. This article focuses on a particular dimension of this framework: research impact linked to the Trust’s pool of research award holders. This article describes why contribution tracing was chosen as an evaluation approach for portfolio-level analysis. It also describes how it was used in innovative ways to handle a large number of cases with potential for impact and develop an organisation-wide evaluation plan that makes the most out of data science techniques while increasing understanding of evaluation and facilitating collaboration and joint planning with colleagues across the organisation.
Reflections on emerging thinking in evidence, implementation, policy and politics from the Multi-Donor Learning Partnership
30th March 2021, Evidence and Implementation Summit 2021
Member of a panel alongside Stacey Young (USAID) and Kerry Albright (UNICEF Office Of Research-Innocenti), with Chris Collison (Knowledgeable Ltd) as moderator. We talked about what our organisations are doing related to
a) Generating and implementing rigorous policy and practice-ready evidence; b) Translation, adaptation and transportability of evidence across people, place, culture and systems; c) Core competencies for evidence synthesis, translation and implementation practice and science; d) New approaches to utilising and implementing evidence require innovation in design, synthesis, research, evaluation and scale-up and e) evidence and implementation science driving systems changes required to address these complex global issues.
25-26th Feb 2021, Global online conference
Co-creator of this conference, member of its organising committee as well as moderator and guest speaker. The aim is to discuss best practice in this field, to question the suitability of frameworks as a way of connecting strategy to practice, and discuss their real world implementation and use to assess health and social impact and changes in society. Conference was sponsored by research funders around the world.
Click here to see my welcome address video for this conference.
25th Jan 2021, AMRC’s impact coffee club session
The Association of Medical Research Charities (AMRC) is a membership organisation dedicated to supporting medical research charities in saving and improving lives through research and innovation. I was invited as guest speaker at one of the monthly impact coffee club sessions they organise, where I shared my experience in building MEL functions – with a focus on the work I have been doing at the Wellcome Trust, one of the largest private philanthropic foundations in the world.
October 2020, The Wellcome Trust. Co-authored paper
An organisational review on the way The Wellcome Trust funds science. Based on broad consultation with people working in research, funding, industry and policy in several countries around the world.
Data from another organisational-wide project I lead (The Wellcome Success Framework) was instrumental in this review. Additional contribution included designing a research plan to test new ideas that were put forward for the new strategy.
January 2020, The Wellcome Trust. Co-authored paper
Responsible for the Wellcome Success Framework, which brings together the broad range of activities through which we achieve our mission. It helps us evaluate different forms of success, be that transformative research, new health interventions, better policies and practices, or effectively engaging people with health research. This report presents some of the evidence from 2012 to 2017 and the plans for its improvement.
March 19th and 20th, 2018 – London
As member of the organising committee, I was responsible for helping organise the London conference in 2018 – including selection of speakers and learning agenda. Also participated as guest speaker, presenting an innovative evaluation approach involving data science tools.
27th November 2019, Barcelona
Invited as guest speaker to discuss evidence-based approaches, using data and analytics to inform action and measure impact for strategic decision-making.
Monitoring research uptake and policy influence – Roundtable discussion. Oversees Development Institute (ODI).
12th November 2018
Invited as guest speaker to discuss the following questions:
- What kind of research impact should programmes aim for and what should they be accountable for?
- How can programmes build plausible cases of the contribution of their research?
- How can programmes support and incentivise learning about research uptake and policy influence?
Media for improved reporting on environmental and natural resources in Central Asia – regional assessment report
16 September 2016
Media for improved reporting on environmental and natural resources in Central Asia is a project funded by the European Union and implemented by Internews in five countries – Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan and Tajikistan – whose aim in to improve the quality of information available to policy makers and citizens around environmental and natural resource issues in the region.
Research was conducted in order to better understand: a) who are the main media outlets in each of the target countries, b) whether any of the main media outlets publish information related to environmental and natural resources issues and what their proportion is compared to overall content output and c) what is the quality of reporting around environmental and natural resources issues.
Internews, lead by the Senior Monitoring and Evaluation Manager – Yulye Jessica Romo Ramos – designed the approach as well as provided technical support and supervision to SIAR Research & Consulting, a company based in Bishkek (Kyrgyzstan), whom executed this research. Media monitoring, content analysis, key informant interviews as well as literature review were the main methodologies used for this research.
The main findings demonstrate low availability and quality of information on environmental and natural resources issues in the region, with common characteristics shared between target countries – for more details please consult full report. These findings helped identify recommendations to fine-tune the intervention, particularly around capacity-building of media beneficiaries, and will also serve as baseline for the project.
Rockwell Automation global webinar: “Gender & Inclusion”
5 April 2016
A talk around gender issues, providing a perspective on its multi-dimensions, using statistics and case studies to illustrate key ideas. Suggestions were given to participants should they be interested in exercising agency around gender issues.
Science and technology for development in Bangladesh and Nepal: Key topics, challenges and opportunities
24 March 2015, SciDev.Net
For this report I talked to senior science communicators, policymakers, scientists, academics and NGO officials in Bangladesh and Nepal; finding that there are similar development priorities where S&T play a key role. The main differences, compared with the developed world, are around access to information and services, higher vulnerability to shocks and natural disasters, and limited financial resources. Recommendations include a more-holistic and long-term approach to development related to science and technology, with multistakeholder and multidisciplinary teams collaborating to tackle complex issues more effectively, while placing a greater focus on gender relations, rural populations and young people.
Commonwealth Scholarships conference: “Connect and communicate: academic engagement with modern media”
13-15 March 2015, Cumberland Lodge (Windsor, UK)
On 14 March I gave a talk focused around communicating research to media and policy stakeholders in order to increase its use for development and poverty reduction. I also presented ideas for facing long-term challenges and discussed collaboration opportunities with other disciplines as well as with the private and third sector.
Workshop at Planet Earth Institute 2nd UnConference: ‘Africa’s Scientific Independence & the Big data challenge’
18 November 2014, Hub Westminster (London, UK)
I lead a workshop at the conference which explored big data as a concept as well as analysed trends and main players. participants were then encourage to assess what big data and the data revolution really means for Africa, what type of development interventions fit the description and work around challenges.
- For a video summary please click here.
Science and technology for development in Sub-Saharan Africa: Key topics, challenges and opportunities.
10 October 2014, SciDev.Net
In March 2014, I organised focus group discussions in Ethiopia, Kenya and South Africa to use as the basis of a report on science and development in the Sub-Saharan Africa. Participants included senior science communicators, policymakers, scientists, academics and NGO officials.
Topics discussed included creating the right environment for science and innovation, and how best to ensure the dissemination and uptake of evidence and research results for equitable development and poverty reduction. Participants also helped generate insights into emerging trends and capacity building needs within their areas of specialisation.
30 July 2014, Global Science Advice
This article summarises issues and opportunities around science advice for policy globally but particularly in the developing world. Formal spaces for participation and input for policy development are key yet largely missing as well as research that is multidisciplinary and therefore more relevant for policy. The agency of a well-informed public is also essential and should be developed in order to tackle transparency and accountability issues.
23 July 2014, SciDev.Net, Co-authored with Dina Najjar
In November 2013, I organised focus groups in Algeria, Egypt and Tunisia to use as the basis of a report on science and development in the Middle East and North Africa. Participants included senior science communicators, policymakers, scientists, academics and NGO officials. Topics discussed included creating the right environment for science and innovation, and how best to ensure the dissemination and uptake of evidence and research results for equitable development and poverty reduction. Participants also helped generate insights into emerging trends and capacity building needs within their areas of specialisation.
- Arabic version here.
- Arabic article covering one of the events by the Tunisian Economic Forum can be found here.
- Arabic article covering one of the events by Scientists Kids (a Tunisian organisation) can be found here
9 July 2014, Planet Earth Institute
Insights around science and technology for development in Africa. It puts forward strategic recommendations and offers some detailed information about key activities that support those strategic dimensions, to name some: creating an enabling political environment and focusing on innovative approaches and partnerships for research, policy and science communication.
17 March 2014, SciDev.Net
Highlights from a conference marking the halfway point of the Development Research Uptake in Sub-Saharan Africa (DRUSSA) project. It is a five year scheme, funded by DFID, that aims to provide direct support to 24 selected universities from Eastern, Western and Southern Africa as they work together to improve research uptake capacity.
Talk at ‘Development Research Uptake in Sub-Saharan Africa (DRUSSA) 2nd Leadership and Benchmarking Conference’
12-14 March 2014, Cape Town (South Africa)
I was invited to give a talk on how to mainstream evidence for policy and development, with a particular focus on how academic institutions and research individuals can better prepare to engage and interact with policy makers and media – this includes having development issues as research goals to increase relevance and usage. The idea of building a culture of science forms the basis of my contribution at this conference, which was attended by 30 senior representatives from 22 member universities from across Sub-saharan Africa.
18 December 2013, SciDev.Net
* Only available in Spanish.
Report based on the focus group discussions I organised and facilitated in Latin America regarding science and technology for development with senior policy makers, development practitioners, media specialists and researchers.
El propósito de las discusiones fue buscar opiniones relacionadas con la ciencia y la tecnología para el desarrollo, divulgación científica, necesidades de capacitación regional y opiniones relacionadas con los obstáculos para el uso de la CyT.
- An article by a specialised media outlet in Bolivia was published here based on an interview I gave regarding these focus groups.
30 October 2013, London School of Economics (London, UK)
Dr Luisa Massarani, speaker for the event, invited this author and Mićo Tatalović (news editor at SciDev.Net) as guest speakers. Dr Massarani presented analysis from Latin American and the Caribbean (LAC) responses as part of a global research project I did on behalf of SciDev.Net did in partnership with the London School of Politics and Economics (LSE) and Museo da Vida in 2012 on science journalism around the world. I presented comparisons between LAC results with that of other regions, also sharing relevant insights from focus group discussions I organised and facilitated around the world for SciDev.Net.
26 September 2013, SciDev.Net
This report combines qualitative and statistical data from three research projects. The projects focus on the use and impact of SciDev.Net material as reported by a self-selected sample of readers, freelance reporters and contributors of opinion pieces. The response has been overwhelmingly positive but the analysis focuses on mapping and categorising the evidence submitted on types of research uptake and impact rather than on quantifying the estimated impact of all SciDev.Net content.
- An editorial article by Anita Makri quoted some findings from this report: Cultivating a voice outside academia has tangible benefits (23 September 2013).
- Spanish version here.
Workshop at Planet Earth Institute Conference ‘Africa’s Scientific Independence: How do we get there’
11 July 2013, Hub Westminster (London, UK)
I lead a workshop at the conference based on focus groups organised in West Africa earlier that year (see the below report). My aim was to demonstrate that Africans know exactly how science and technology can help them develop and that perhaps, particularly the international community, should support those national priorities for long-term success. More details here.
- See video here for highlights of the event and quotes by workshop leaders like this author on the subject.
17 July 2013, SciDev.Net – Co-authored with Moussiliou ALIDOU
* Only available in French
L’objectif des groupes de discussion est d’échanger et d’analyser avec les décideurs politiques, les chercheurs, les membres d’organisations non-gouvernementales (ONG), les communicateurs et autres journalistes, afin d’identifier les besoins, notamment les thématiques les plus pertinentes en matière de science et technologie (S&T), genre et développement, et de tendances régionales en matière de communication, recherche et formulation de politiques scientifiques pour le développement, et d’apprécier la couverture et les formats utilisés pour les services de SciDev.Net.
- An article called Science et technologie en Afrique de l’Ouest was published on 13 April 2013 based on an interview I did for the Senegalese newspaper Le Soleil, regarding the focus groups in West Africa.
26 June 2013, Research to Action & DFID newsletter
A blog about making research accessible and influential in policy and development spheres around the globe. Based on global research projects engaging policy makers and development stakeholders, as well as others working in the media, private and academic sector – reaching in total around 4000 people mainly from the developing world/global south.
01 March 2013, SciDev.net – Co-authored with Dr. Luisa Massarani.
This report studies one of SciDev.Net’s regional desks, Latin American and the Caribbean, demonstrating effective science communication. The report covers key factors of success and lessons that can be learned when building scidnce communication networks. All of this can be applied in other regions and used by other, similar, organisations.
- Spanish version here.
01 March 2013, People & Science – Co-authored with Martin W Bauer, Sue Howard, Luisa Massarani and Luis Amorim.
Forty years ago, science journalists were described as being more missionary than scientists themselves. This mood is changing now. Recent studies of science writers in the United States, Canada and Europe have found staff cuts, pessimism, and standards being threatened by increased workloads, time pressures and risks of journalists churning out news stories from press releases (‘churnalism’).
But is this predicament universal? Between June 2009 and April 2012, we asked close to 1000 science journalists in 88 countries about their conditions and views of the profession. Our data was collected on-line in English, French, Spanish, Portuguese and Arabic and we found that the situation differs around the world.
1 January 2013, SciDev.Net – Co-authored with Martin W Bauer, Sue Howard, Luisa Massarani and Luis Amorim.
SciDev.Net partnered with the London School of Economics (LSE) and Museu da Vida (Brazil) to examine science communication around the world: journalists’ background, workload, and opinions on science communication, work environment and capacity building needs.
We also investigated the climate of opinion among science journalists and found no evidence for a global sense of crises in science communication— contrary to the evidence presented by a feature published in Nature (Brumfield et al., 2009).
Articles referencing this report:
- Upbeat findings on science journalism in the developing world (17 January 2013) by Imogen Mathers, SciDev.Net
- Optimism about Science Journalism in the Developing World (19 January 2013) by the World Federation of Science Journalists
- Science journalism’s great divide: Study finds pessimism in the West, optimism in the Global South (21 January 2013) by Curtis Brainard, Columbia Journalism Review
- From pages to screen (2013) by Kendal Powell, Nature
1 November 2012, SciDev.Net
I studied the different contextual settings within which policymakers, the private sector, NGOs, media organisations and the research community operate to better understand how to mainstream more science and technology evidence for development and poverty reduction purposes.
This report presents findings from a series of research projects that were commissioned in order to create a robust picture of the context and opportunities for mainstreaming evidence, helping develop the next set of SciDev.Net strategic objectives (2013–2017).
- An editorial article by Nick Perkins was written based on this report: Showing decision-makers the value of science (19 September 2013).
1 September 2012, SciDev.Net
I organised and facilitated a series of focus groups in Fiji, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Thailand (June 2012). Participants included senior science communicators, policymakers, scientists, academics, NGO officials, as well as professionals coming from the private sector.
Topics discussed included setting the right environment for science and innovation, to dissemination and uptake of evidence and research results for development and poverty reduction. Participants also helped generate insights into emerging trends and capacity building needs within their areas of specialisation.
- An editorial article by Nick Perkins was written based on this report: Global priorities, local context: a governance challenge(19 September 2013).
An Evaluative and Monitoring Framework for High-level Decision Making – Towards more participative governance and development models. Case Study: United Kingdom
September 2010 – The University of Winchester
The paper analyses United Kingdom (UK) upstreaming and participatory practice, revealing performance issues – common to most countries – and identifies ways to tackle them. Facilitation of participation throughout the policy-making process is recommended as an ideal scenario and a long-term goal. As a short to medium term measure, a framework has been developed and presented here. It promotes wide participation, adequate training for facilitators as well as evaluative and monitoring mechanisms that aim to improve practice whilst creating transparency and accountability.
The core value of this research rests in its capability to mainstream evaluation & monitoring practice at high levels of decision-making whilst promoting the transition towards more participatory governance and development models at the same time.
Hugo Chávez: nueva figura política (a new political figure)
November 2006 – University of Monterrey
* Only available in Spanish
This paper analyses the form of government that Hugo Chávez developed for Venezuela, with the view of assessing whether it was a new form of democratic model or not, and argued that it could indeed be a new democratic model.
Eight years since this paper was written, history has demonstrated that Chávez’s approach in practice did not live up to the rhetoric provided, which on its face sounded promising to this author. However the idea that a new type of democratic model could come out of Latin America is still worth considering.