Exploring Partnerships between Academia and Disabled Persons’ Organisations: Lessons Learned from Collaborative Research in Africa

Maria Kett, Mark T. Carew, John-Bosco Asiimwe, Richard Bwalya, Anderson Gitonga, Boakai A. Nyehn, Joyce Olenja, Leslie Swartz, Nora Groce
Volume 50 Issue 1
Published: 10 June 2019
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.19088/1968-2019.106

In this article, we discuss how our academic research on disability and international development in five African countries has benefited hugely from active collaboration with advocates, practitioners, and policymakers, ultimately ensuring that research evidence is used to inform policy and practice. Whilst building such partnerships is seen as good practice, it is particularly important when working on disability issues, as the clarion call of the disability movement, ‘nothing about us without us’, attests. This is not just a slogan. Without the active and critical engagement of disabled people – as researchers, participants, advocates – the evidence gathered would not have the same impact. This article discusses experiences from research in Liberia, Kenya, Uganda, Sierra Leone, and Zambia. It highlights the challenges and opportunities such partnerships can bring in achieving the goals of leaving no one behind and doing nothing without the active engagement and inclusion of persons with disabilities.

Online article


From Issue: Vol 50, No 1 (2019) | Exploring Research–Policy Partnerships in International Development