Maternal Health Burkina Faso.

A study from Uganda shows that midwives with proper training successfully can replace medical treatment for abortion and miscarriage. The study, published in the Lancet, was supported by Sida. The picture is taken at a health clinic in Burkina Faso.

Photo: Jerome Sessini / Magnum Photos

sida research

What we support

Updated: 30 September 2015

The research cooperation at Sida has a wide mandate in research support, encompassing capacity building, support to global, regional and national research as well as support to innovation. The aim is strengthened research of high quality and of relevance to poverty reduction and sustainable development.

The research cooperation is guided by the Strategy for research cooperation 2015-2021 from the Swedish government. The activities in the context of the strategy are intended to contribute to strengthening research capacity and research-based knowledge to tackle poverty-related problems, primarily in low-income countries.

Weak national systems for research lead to fewer opportunities to identify, adapt to, and make use of new knowledge in a country. Sida works long term to support the development of capacity at universities and research organisations for research, research management and dissemination of research results. Through a system of support for PhD and master programmes in low-income countries, combined with core support to universities and research institutes, research capacity is built up on the national and regional level. Rather than giving grants to researchers to study at PhD programmes abroad, this model allows for development of viable national research institutions. Students who complete their PhDs at home move on to become lecturers and professors, and improved management and facilities improve the quality of research. By "teaching the teacher" research support allows national and regional research institutions to grow in a sustainable manner. It also has the potential to create a "critical mass" of highly educated individuals who can use their skills for the benefit of their communities.

High-quality research of relevance to low-income countries as well as innovation are other priorities of the strategy for research cooperation, aiming at increased production of research of relevance for development, more networks and cooperation between different actors, reinforcement of the universities contribution to innovation processes, and greater impact of gender equality perspective.

In the Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness 2005, enhanced by the Accra Agenda for Action in 2008, and in Busan in 2011, Sweden and other countries agreed to make development cooperation more effective with increased consideration for partner countries' priorities, systems and procedures. Accordingly, Swedish research cooperation aspires to align with national plans and structures for research, and to coordinate research support in collaboration with other donors. In line with this, Sida will direct resources to national and university/institutional capacity in partner countries for the negotiation of conditions for support from Sida as well as from other funders and development agencies.

The Paris Declaration has furthermore accelerated efforts among partner countries and donors to work together to improve management for results. A focus on results is important for ownership, credibility, accountability to internal and external actors, internal learning by all parties involved in a programme and for use as information for decision-makers. On request from the Swedish Government, Sida has developed a strategy for increased results orientation within research cooperation. This states that, as a donor organisation, Sida must be clear about the results that its contributions are intended to achieve. Intended results should be unambiguously formulated in agreements, and continuously reviewed in dialogue with partners. The cooperation partner and Sida should know if intended results are actually achieved, and reporting on results should be clearly described and transparent.


Page owner: Research Cooperation Unit

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