Evidence into Policy and Practice

IDS has pioneered approaches to linking up the supply of inclusive research with the demand for evidence from governments, donors, international development agencies, and civil society. It has also helped shape the concept of the politics of knowledge and current understandings of the relationship between evidence, policy and practice being social, political and interactive.

We have significant experience of mobilising knowledge in response to urgent humanitarian crises, and also provide tailored development knowledge services to governments and donor agencies as well as centres of excellence for knowledge sharing and engagement.  Our research staff and knowledge specialists bring particular experience and expertise in the following areas:

Evidence into use –research design that integrates knowledge exchange and policy engagement mechanisms from the start.

Research communications – high quality accessible products designed for maximum engagement

Digitally-enabled knowledge exchange – making evidence more available and accessible with the thoughtful use of technology.

Monitoring, evaluation and learning – facilitated learning around research impact and the development of theories of change.

Capacity building and mutual learning – through research programmes and tailored training and strategy support for institutions and individuals working at the interface between research evidence and policy and practice.

Programmes and centres


Recent work

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Showing 337–348 of 358 results

Journal Article

China and the Global Terms of Trade

IDS Bulletin 37.1

The terms of trade have dominated development thinking since the early 1950s when Singer and Prebisch produced analyses of price trends, which suggested that there was a secular trend towards a fall in the commodities–manufactures terms of trade (Prebisch 1950; Singer 1950). The...

1 January 2006

Journal Article

How to Identify the Trade Impact of China on Small Countries

IDS Bulletin 37.1

China’s explosion onto the world trade and trade policy scene is the product of its size, recent dynamic growth and entry into the World Trade Organization (WTO). The first two factors determine the volume of goods and services being produced and consumed by China, while the third restricts...

Christopher Stevens
Jane Kennan

1 January 2006

Journal Article

Increasing Aid for Poverty Reduction: Rethinking the Policy Agenda

IDS Bulletin Vol. 36 Nos. 3

This article addresses the nexus between aid and poverty reduction. It challenges the conventional wisdom that enhanced aid is central to poverty reduction. There is a rich literature reviewing the impact of aid on poverty.It is now generally accepted that unless aid flows are located within a...

Rehman Sobhan

1 July 2005

Journal Article

Neo-patrimonialism and Policy Processes: Lessons from the Southern African Food Crisis

IDS Bulletin Vol. 36 Nos. 2

In the 1990s economic liberalisation replaced state support for agriculture across much of Southern Africa. As well as reducing costs, it was assumed that liberalisation would ensure food availability and access to food through positive effects on production and trade incentives and on incomes....

Elizabeth Cromwell
Allan Chintedza

1 April 2005

Journal Article

The Chimera of Success

IDS Bulletin Vol. 35 Nos. 4

One of the many myths that populate the field of gender and development is one that claims that gender has been so successfully mainstreamed into development policy that there is now little need for women’s projects and programmes, or indeed for women’s policy units. The job of creating...

Maxine Molyneux

1 October 2004


Immersions for Policy and Personal Change

Senior staff in aid agencies are involved in daily decisions about policy and practice which have direct impact on the lives of poor people. But in a rapidly changing world, how can they be sure that they are basing those decisions on up-to-date information about what poor people want and would...

1 January 2004


Ideas in Practice. Enquiring into Participation in Sida

How can a development agency working in a rapidly evolving policy and practice environment develop its responsive capacity? How can development professionals forge effective and influential relationships with key partners? Ability to reflect and learn in action are neglected but critical...

1 January 2004

Journal Article

7. Refining Performance Assessment Systems to Serve Sustainability, Poverty Outreach and Impact Goals: The Case of the Small Enterprise Foundation in South Africa

IDS Bulletin Vol. 34 Nos. 4

The Small Enterprise Foundation (SEF) is a nonprofit microfinance organisation (MFO) based in South Africa that works towards the elimination of poverty by fostering sustainable income generation, job creation and social empowerment. SEF achieves this by creating a supportive environment for...

Kate Roper

1 October 2003

Journal Article

Livelihood Dynamics: Rural Mozambique, South Africa and Zimbabwe

IDS Bulletin Vol. 34 Nos. 3

Rural people in southern Africa make a living in diverse ways, often in harsh physical and economic environments. Such contexts are fast-changing requiring shifts in livelihood strategies and mixes of activities. This article explores both the vulnerability contexts and livelihood strategies...

1 July 2003