In December 2016, Research-into-Use leaders from each of the four CARIAA consortia converged on the Oxfam headquarters in Oxford for two days of sharing, reflecting and planning toward ensuring that the strong research work coming out of CARIAA influences policy and practice.
There are many ways to think about, plan for, and pursue Research-into-Use. Meeting participants reflected on their experiences of the first 2.5 years of CARIAA, and shared the lessons that they had learned along the way about how to do things better. From the high mountains of the Himalaya to the semi-arid grasslands of Africa, they learned about the practical challenges and successes of the teams’ efforts to bring research results into practical use.
One of the outcomes of this meeting was a two-page Guidance Note that summarises the collective wisdom of CARIAA consortia about what Research-into-Use is, and what they have learned so far about the keys to success in such a large program.
This note is just the beginning of a dedicated effort to ensure that the rich learning that is being generated through these activities is captured, shared, and that it transforms not only our own practice in the program itself, but also more widely as we make these lessons available. The group agreed to convene twice each year to ensure that the conversation continues, and that learning is nurtured and acted upon.