News, Blogs and Events

Consultancy opportunity: Mid-term review of the Sanitation Learning Hub

The purpose of the mid-term review (MTR) is to conduct a formative evaluation and independently assess the relevance, efficiency, effectiveness and sustainability of the programme. The evaluators shall use the OECD DAC evaluation criteria for these 4 areas.

The MTR will highlight successes and challenges since the current project funding phase began in 2019 and will seek to measure the progress towards the intended outcomes and objectives of the programme.

'Education is freedom' - turning the rhetoric of inclusion into action

Paulo Freire is often quoted as saying education is freedom. Education in general has changed drastically in the 100 years since he was born, yet questions remain as to whether these changes are moving us all closer to the freedom that Freire envisaged or whether some people continue to be left behind. To better understand the positive actions that are needed to drive change and deliver freedom, we must examine inclusive approaches to education and pedagogy much more closely.

Assessing our own gender equality and social inclusion credentials

Earlier this year, the Sanitation Learning Hub team published a call for applicants to undertake a gender equality and social inclusion (GESI) audit of the programme to identify how GESI issues are addressed in our activities and internal organisation processes. Over April and May, a team of gender and social inclusion experts from the Water for Women Fund reviewed publications and internal policies, undertook interviews with partners and facilitated the team through a GESI self-assessment tool.

All the data collected was then shared with the team through an online validation, reflection and action planning workshop. The self-assessment tool has now been published for others to use. This blog outlines our experience of the process.

Watch again: Action-oriented forms of participatory research

This session introduced the main themes of the section action-oriented participatory research methods from the new SAGE Handbook of Participatory Research and Inquiry.

Each speaker introduced their participatory research chapter, focusing on how action is used as a way of knowing/learning/doing research. A facilitated fishbowl discussion will then took place where audience members can come in and out of the fishbowl to discuss with the authors.

This was the penultimate event in our Participation Research Week series which forms the launch of the new SAGE Handbook of Participatory Research and Inquiry.


  • Mary Brydon-Miller, Department of Educational Leadership, Evaluation and Organizational Development, University of Louisville
  • Alfredo Ortiz Aragón , Associate Professor | Dreeben School of Education, University of the Incarnate Word

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Watch again: Mixing and mashing participatory with other research methods

How can one combine well-established research methods using numbers (such as statistics) or narrative methods (in-depth interviews) with visual participatory methods (e.g. body mapping, painting, and social mapping)?

The presenters will present how they combined participatory methods and principles with academic rigour presenting large-scale work from India on bonded labourers and work with sexual minorities in Vietnam. They will show that the final combination of methods and tools they used depended on the research question. Each type of evidence requires a different methodology and tools and techniques for collection and analysis, some of which may be participatory while others are not.


Pauline Oosterhoff, Research Fellow, IDS

Panel speakers:

Tu Anh Hoang, CCIHP, Vietnam: Mixed participatory and formal methods in studying violence towards men who have sex with men in Viet Nam

Praxis – Institute for Participatory Practices, India: Building in complementarity in participatory mixed methods in research, monitoring and learning in Modern Slavery in India

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Watch again: Digital technologies in participatory research

The migration to digital participatory research methods has been dramatically accelerated by the pandemic as research methods have migrated online. The global pandemic has forced many of us to take seriously both the potentials and pitfalls of mobile, online, and digital tools in participatory research. Until 2020 participatory research literature has justifiably focused primarily on the face-to-face practices of participation.

This webinar focuses on the chapter taken from the newly published SAGE Handbook of Participatory Research and Inquiry and makes the case for a parallel focus on the digital technologies of participation which have been under analysed.


Watch again: Participatory monitoring, evaluation and learning

In the context of today’s uncertainty and global crises – such as the Covid 19 pandemic – debates about how evaluation serves decision making, what evidence matters and how it informs policy are ‘fundamental issues’ of our times. Long standing debates about whose voices count when generating evidence, and how equity in outcomes might be understood and achieved are taking centre stage again. This event is organised as part of Participation Research week and co-hosted with the Centre for Development Impact (CDI).

Watch again: Global launch event of the Handbook of PR&I

In case you missed it, join the editors of the first ever SAGE Handbook of Participatory Research and Inquiry that provides the most comprehensive source of contemporary, cutting-edge approaches to participatory research methods and design, as well as the foundations of participatory research and critical practice issues. Including 71 chapters by 150 authors from a wide variety of disciplines the handbook covers the tools for inclusive, action-orientated research for social change and new ways for researchers and social activists globally to engage the most marginalised.

This was the first event in our Participation Research Week series of events from running from 20 to 24 September.


Peter Taylor, Director of Research, IDS