An international conference is being hosted this week by the Canada-based United Nations University – Institute for Water, Environment and Health. The focus of the 60 experts from 20 countries: “How to better mobilize knowledge and maximize its usefulness.”
Worldwide, billions of dollars are spent each year to help advance knowledge of interest for the public good. Too often, however, those who could benefit, including policy makers and the general public, never learn about much of the information.
Policymakers in developed and developing countries alike are hampered by the need to respond rapidly to pressing concerns, and rely on the actions of intermediaries to help them interpret complex information. Both in developed and developing countries, intermediaries broker knowledge into policy and practice. Working with civil society organisations, NGOs, the private sector and academia, these intermediaries help ensure that the best available knowledge is used to make effective policies.”
—Louise Shaxson, a Research Fellow at the UK’s Overseas Development Institute, and Vice-Chair of the Conference
The following are some of the challenges the attendees hope to address:
- Practitioners in one sector unaware of relevant work going on elsewhere
- International donors who find it difficult to assess the policy impact of their research funding
- Policymakers who need access to authoritative resources for decision-making
© Tony Leininger and IT for Good 2012. See sidebar for full copyright notice.
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