Building Capacity to Use Research Evidence (BCURE)
The effective use of research and evidence can play a crucial role in making policy more successful. While policymakers in low- and middle-income countries often lack the capacity to effectively access, appraise and apply research when making decisions, capacity is just one element of a tapestry of factors that block or disincentivise evidence-informed policymaking.
This was the headline finding from Itad’s three-year realist evaluation of the Building Capacity to Use Research Evidence Programme (BCURE), a £15.7 million initiative funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID) from 2013-2017. BCURE aimed to increase the capacity of policymakers to use research more effectively, through building the skills, incentives and systems required to access, appraise and apply evidence in decision making.
We found that, across all the BCURE contexts, there was a genuine need to build technical skills in evidence access, appraisal and use. However, while there is a problem when civil servants don’t understand statistics or how to weigh up which evidence sources are reliable, fixing these problems won’t help improve policy if there is no political space to bring evidence into decision making, and no incentives for senior decision makers to care about evidence. You can find all our reports and findings below.
BCURE Findings and Publications