NomadIT Conference Suite

DSA, 2019: DSA2019: Opening up Development

Open University, Milton Keynes, 19/06/2019 – 21/06/2019


Strengthening the skill set of health and education practitioners in Sub-Saharan Africa [paper]
Date and Start Time [TBD] at [TBD]
Sessions [TBD]


  • Claire Hedges (Open University) email
  • Allison Littlejohn (Open University) email
  • Ellen Scott (The Open University) email
  • Thomas Power (The Open University) email
  • Cathy Lloyd (The Open University) email
  • David Ndetei (University of Nairobi ) email
  • Aravinda Meera Guntupalli (The Open University) email

Mail All Convenors

Short abstract

This panel will highlight health and education practices located in different communities, focussing on the successful initiatives in both research and evidence-based practice. We invite papers that consider innovative practice at the local level, the lessons that can be learned and how these can be replicated in future projects.

Long abstract

Opportunities for skills development for local health and education practitioners have remained elusive due to their complexity, the need to engage with a full range of actors within a system, the diverse factors that influence practice and the length of time required to support change. These challenges are found across the board, in both research and education, and have often ignored the importance of local knowledge. Indeed it is only recently, in DFID’s 2018 education policy that the centrality of teachers to improving children's learning has been acknowledged. For health improvement, the importance of skilling up the local workforce, transferring existing expertise and understanding the importance of evidence-informed practice, in addition to changes in policy or funding, are barriers that are not always overcome. Too often attempts to build capacity are based on simplistic cascade training models and can be overly theoretical, rather than learner-centred and focused on key knowledge gaps and issues prioritised by practitioners themselves.

We would welcome papers that focus on 1) research that informs local health and education practice in different communities, 2) the opportunities for ‘scaling’ across a system, 3) the factors that support meaningful change in practice, 4) different methodological approaches for conducting research that can inform practice, and 5) lessons learned from successful initiatives.

This panel is closed to new paper proposals.


The panel has no papers to display. Only accepted papers will be shown here.

This panel is closed to new paper proposals.