Co-production of Research Evidence and Development of Knowledge Management Platforms to Guide Policy Actors in the Use of Evidence to Inform Health Decision-making in Kenya

In 2018, the Kenya Medical Research Institute (KEMRI) conducted a baseline survey in six pilot counties on how research evidence is accessed, analyzed and used to inform decision-making. One of the key findings from the survey was that whereas county staff members were aware and appreciated the value of using research evidence in decision making processes, adoption and adaption was identified as the weak link towards full realization of the benefits of using evidence. This was partially attributed to a variety of factors such as lack of central e-repositories to house county specific-health related publications, non-actionable research findings recommendations, and inability of staff to effectively develop and communicate actionable evidence-based briefs. According to empirical studies, this phenomenon is referred to as the “know-do” gap. Through the Heightening institutional capacity for government use of health research (HIGH-Res) project led by AFIDEP, the KEMRI Knowledge Management Unit addressed the gaps identified from the baseline survey. The mandate of KEMRI Knowledge Management Unit is to provide evidence synthesis to the Kenya Ministry of Health (MoH) in response to priority policy and programme issues. The intervention to address the gap was developed in partnership with selected research champions and monitoring and evaluation (M&E) officers from pilot counties.