The themes of the EVIDENCE conferences remain Engage, Understand, Impact and this year’s satellites all aim to do just that. There are eight sessions planned, all happening on Tuesday 25 September 2018, and hosted by some of the most innovative and exciting organisations on the frontlines of evidence-informed decision-making in Africa. Expect a full day of engagement with the sessions starting at 09:00 and closing at 17:00, with plenty of time to network between and after sessions.

SATELLITE SESSION 1A-1B: Evidence value chain: showcasing the dimensions of evidence from projects undertaken by the Research Use and Impact Assessment (RIA) unit of the Human Sciences Research Council (Human Sciences Research Council)

Based in South Africa, the Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC) aim to share the experiences of and mechanisms for interacting with the evidence value chain of their Research Use and Impact Assessment unit. The session will detail the ten different approaches used by the RIA to support the evidence value chain in Africa, with examples from their work shared with session attendees. An additional objective of this session is to establish collaborative links with other research organisations and individuals interested in the work the RIA undertakes.

SATELLITE SESSION 1C: Measuring evidence-use: the value of contribution tracing (International Initiative for Impact Evaluation)

Attendees of this session offered by the International Initiative for Impact Evaluation can look forward to hearing about the Initiative’s pilot of applying contribution tracing to monitor and measure evidence uptake and use of 3ie-supported studies and reviews. Sharing the improvements this has made to the Initiative’s monitoring function, attendees of this session will be invited to apply contribution tracing techniques with the aim of developing testable evidence use claims and data collection strategies to measure evidence-use. A valuable and practical session for anyone wanting to explore ways to measure evidence-use.

SATELLITE SESSION 1D: Exploring synergies between evidence maps and rapid response services to support evidence-informed policy-making: towards collaboration and shared learning (Africa Centre for Evidence/Department for Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation)

Are evidence maps and rapid response services complimentary in supporting evidence-informed decision-making? The team at the Africa Centre for Evidence and the South African Department for Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation think they might be. In fact, this session promises to share practical next steps for how these methods can be used to institutionalise evidence-informed decision-making in government. Colleagues from within government are especially encouraged to attend this session.

SATELLITE SESSION 2A: Strengthening evidence use in Uganda: what’s working and what’s next (International Initiative for Impact Evaluation)

If you are hoping for an interactive satellite session, make sure you attend the International Initiative for Impact Evaluations’ (3ie) talk show style session. The speakers in this satellite will share their experiences of evidence needs and uses in Uganda, and what has – and what has not – worked in getting that evidence used. Come and join a conversation with speakers that is contextualised in terms of the importance of promoting evidence-use at a country level.

SATELLITE SESSION 2B: Invisibility and evidence: time’s up for evidence that doesn’t consider gendered drivers of inequality (International Initiative for Impact Evaluation)

The International Initiative for Impact Evaluation aims to illuminate the causes and many manifestations of the systemic challenge of gendered inequality and explore the role evidence can play in addressing it. By sharing the challenges of promoting more gender- and equity-responsive research and evidence use encountered by participants and their attempts to overcome these, this session hopes to instill attendees with a sensitivity to the gendered nature of inequality and evidence-use that can be exercised throughout the course of EVIDENCE 2018.

SATELLITE SESSION 2C: GESI Network needs assessment (EPPI Centre)

The session will build on the results of the GESI Network needs assessment and will aim to work with Network members attending the session on potential solutions to answer these needs or to draft a list of what needs to be done to answer these needs through collaboration with other Network members and supported by GESI Secretariat.

SATELLITE SESSION 2D: A peer learning network for government policy-makers to advance evidence-use in Africa: an emerging strategy (Results for All)

Attend this session if you would like to participate in feedback on the strategy and structure of a global evidence network that would collaborate with existing structures like the AEN to deepen support for evidence-informed decision-making. Through a collaborative and consultative process with government officials, Results for All will present in this session their proposed peer learning network for policymakers in government, whose aim it would be to amplify the value of evidence-use within government and strengthen institutional capacity to use evidence in decision-making.

SATELLITE SESSION 3A-3C: Citizen evidence and evidence-informed policy-making: whose knowledge counts? (International Development Research Centre)

Do citizens’ voices have a place in evidence-informed decision-making? And if so, what is the best way to ensure they are heard? This innovative session by the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) will explore current practices for incorporating citizens’ voices into evidence-informed decision-making in the hopes of identifying potential collaboration for future action. In addition to exploring stories of successful integration of citizens’ voices, this session aims to support attendees with how to navigate the power dynamics inherent in including citizens in the evidence-informed decision-making process.

SATELLITE SESSION 3D: Capacity development to use evidence in decision-making: working toward partnerships and building space to use approaches that work (AEN / International Initiative for Impact Evaluation)

In this 90-minute session, panellists will take the dialogue forward in short presentations about how they are working to address the short-comings and dysfunctions in capacity development in the region. We will be introducing efforts that look at making systemic improvements in training and education by agreeing on standards and harmonising approaches. The audience will engage with the discussion. There will be group work to focus in more detail on identified areas for improvement, and recommendations for how to address them will be shared in the feedback.