Knowledge intermediaries in Africa

December 8, 2008

‘Is Information the solution’ is an article on intermediaries inspired by the Power of In-between conference. It was written by Richard Humphries, an independent consultant who works on knowledge initiatives in Africa.

Knowledge intermediaries, he suggests, “possess much power to shape development discourse” by constant scanning, sifting and aggregation of perspectives. He asks what more can be done to promote the strength of knowledge intermediaries in Africa?

You can read the full article commissioned by Inter Press Service (IPS) here.

Also check out Richard Humphries blog which highlights issues in the African knowledge and networking field.


How do research brokers and intermediaries contribute to evidence based policy making? Revisiting the hypotheses

July 22, 2008
Closing plenary session - Jane Ireri (AMREF), James Nguo (ALIN), Ananya Raihan (DNet)

Closing plenary session - Jane Ireri (AMREF), James Nguo (ALIN), Ananya Raihan (DNet)

I always enjoy the closing session of a conference. As I’m reflecting on what I’ll take away it’s good to find out if it’s the same – or the complete opposite – of the other people in the room. Here are some of the things that they were thinking.

  • being an information repository is not enough – intermediaries are part of the knowledge flow
  • intermediaries can’t be fully neutral – but this isn’t the end of the world
  • intermediaries can (should?) have influence at all levels – how are we connecting at the grassroots?
  • more work is needed on monitoring and evaluation – we’re putting all this work in but how do we judge our impact?
  • policy makers make decisions on the fly with a lot of information in their heads – how can we make sure that research is one of these things?
  • people were encouraged by the fact that funders had taken the time to come to the conference – it shows that there is a real interest in what we’re doing?
  • this was an invaluable networking opportunity

Read the rest of this entry »


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