Enabling adolescents to achieve positive outcomes depends on our research influencing policy and programming. This is why stakeholder and policy engagement has been an essential part of everything we do and involves all staff and partners from early career researchers to directors and academic leads.
We are continuously consulting with governments, donors, agencies and most importantly adolescents to explore their needs and challenges, and the questions they want us to research.
Adolescents want services designed for them. Governments want robust evidence about what works, cost-effective interventions, and programme scale-up. Agencies want smarter interventions which target many outcomes. These needs have been built into our research and guide continued conversations with stakeholders.
We are continuously consulting with governments, donors, agencies, and, most importantly, adolescents themselves to explore their needs and challenges, and the questions they want us to research. See some of our recent highlights below.
COVID-19 global health security
In response to the sharp rise in caregiver loss and COVID-19-associated orphanhood, our team has co-led a new multi-agency group – the Global Reference Group on Children Affected by COVID-19 – in partnership with the WHO, CDC, USAID, World Bank, UCL, UCT, and Imperial College London. We have led high-level advocacy to support family-based care, including informing South Africa’s new cash programme to support families caring for orphaned children and the World Bank’s Social Response Program to address the caregiver crisis.
We have led policy engagement with various policymakers to support girls’ education and prevent school dropout across sub-Saharan Africa. For example, we are currently working with South Africa’s Department of Social Development to support return to school for pregnant learners and adolescent mothers. Our evidence on education has also been shared with the Nigeria’s Ministry of Education, Ethiopia’s Ministry of Health, UNICEF, UNFPA, and through Girls not Bride’s international CRANK network.
We have built strong partnerships to end violence against children and adolescents. Our evidence on violence prevention was featured in the 55th session of the Commission on Population and Development (CPD55), the End Violence Solutions Summit, and the Southern African Development Community (SADC) SRHR scorecard workshop. In response to increased violence during COVID-19 lockdowns, our team also worked on evidence-based positive parenting guidance with UNICEF, USAID, WHO, UNODC, WWO, CDC, the Internet of Good Things, and the Global Partnership to End Violence Against Children.
Building on over a decade of research on social protection, our team has advised leading development agencies and coalitions, including UNAIDS, ILO, WFP, UNFPA, UNICEF, and the Inter-agency Task Team on HIV-sensitive social protection. For example, we recently worked with WFP Regional offices in Southern and Eastern Africa to define the bi-directional relationship between food security and HIV in the region, and the role of social protection in mitigating these risks.
Sexual health and rights
Our evidence on SRH was featured in the 24th International Aids Conference, International Conference on Family Planning, and the African Union’s 5th Calestous Juma Executive Dialogue. In partnership with UNICEF and the Global Fund to End HIV, TB, and Malaria, we are also leading policy engagement with the governments of Eswatini, Lesotho, Kenya, Mozambique, and Lesotho to prevent and respond to the rise of HIV cases among adolescent girls and young women.
Browse our featured resources to identify how you can use our work to inform yours.
A quasi-experimental study 2002-2013
In high-conflict settings such as South Sudan, evidence-based parenting programmes can be highly effective in reducing the use of harsh discipline and improving positive parenting...
Authors: Susan D Hillis, H Juliette T Unwin, Yu Chen, Prof Lucie Cluver,Prof Lorraine Sherr, Philip S Goldman, Oliver Ratmann, Prof Christl A Donnelly, Prof Samir Bhatt, Andrés Villaveces, Alexander Butchart, Gretchen Bachman, Laura Rawlings, Phil Green, Prof Charles A Nelson III, Seth Flaxman