Addressing HIV and nutrition linkages: from evidence to impact

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Presented at RENEWAL’s Satellite Session "Nutrition Security, Social Protection and HIV: Operationalizing Evidence for Programs in Africa" at the XVIII International AIDS Conference. By Scott Drimie

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Addressing HIV and nutrition linkages: from evidence to impact

  1. 1. Addressing HIV and nutrition linkages: from evidence to impact Scott Drimie International Food Policy Research Institute Regional Network on AIDS, Livelihoods and Food SecurityNutrition Security, Social Protection and HIV: Operationalizing Evidence for Programs in Africa XVIII International AIDS Conference , Vienna 18 July 2010
  2. 2. Objectives• Focus on the challenge of translating this emerging evidence into large-scale action, and ultimately better impact.• Discuss the pathways for policy influence when dealing with such complex interactions.• Highlight some of the lessons from nine years of RENEWAL activity in eastern and southern Africa.
  3. 3. Science – Policy Interface• Interface not well understood, and is often assumed.• At least three distinctive perspectives: – a linear and logical approach; – an iterative and incremental approach; and – an approach centered more on discourse.
  4. 4. Moving in the Divided Space RENEWAL Research Improved Policy“Evidence” Multi-Directional Dialogue
  5. 5. Malawi MOA Capacity Strengthening NAC: 2008 Irish Aid: 2009 MOA: Ext Services HIV and Agriculture Task Force Strategy – based on Capacity limitations scientific evidence RENEWAL / Bunda SADC VAC training on HIV/FSScience Modules for MOA FAO Funding Sam Bota RENEWAL Malawi
  6. 6. TB and HIV in Mbekweni, South Africa Community engagement Policy “dialogue” with NAC, DoHZAMBART Research RENEWAL National Fora Project MSc degrees, publications Collaboration – build on strengths Feedback Meeting: “march on the councilors”
  7. 7. Working as a network: lessons• The nature of politics and political engagement: – peculiar politics of HIV&AIDS – labyrinthine departmental politics – focus on sustaining relationships
  8. 8. Working as a network: lessons• The maintenance of integrity of interactive research: – adherence to principles of science whilst maintaining close relationships with those with political authority – ensuring accountability to the communities within which the research is conducted. – To “reach-in” to what individuals and organisations share rather than to focus on differences.
  9. 9. Working as a network: lessons• Selecting and nurturing ‘champions’ in government and scientific organisations: – senior officials regularly move to new posts – scientists have a ‘natural’ reticence against use of their research in different forms and ways – Need to engage in critical commentary and interpretation with different ‘non-science’ parties
  10. 10. New Ways of Working• The “U-Process” in Mamelodi, South Africa: – Urban-rural links research • Urban epidemic • Urban informal settlements have double the HIV prevalence of urban formal areas in South Africa • Risk factors (Weiser et al) • Mobility and spatial connections
  11. 11. Sickness and HIV:if the individual in Johannesburg becomes toosick to work, the majority will return back home 54 % 67% Urban livelihood Support Importance of that supportsanother household food Burden on the household back‘back home’ would be affected. home.
  12. 12. The “U-Process”: Phase 1“ Co-Sensing Phase 1: Co-sensing Co- “learning to see… the Realizing first schooling” – Nietzsche Activities: foundation workshops, learning journeys. Output: Documented shared understanding Co-Presencing of reality.
  13. 13. The “U-Process”: Phase 2“ Phase 2: Co- Co-presencing Retreat Sensing and Reflect Co- Getting in touch with own Realizing relationship to the system, ‘inner knowing about it. Activities: Innovation retreat, Wilderness solos Output:: Clarity and commitment about what Co-Presencing to do to create new reality
  14. 14. The “U-Process”: Phase 3“ Phase 3: Co- realizing – bringing Co- the new reality into Sensing existence Co-Realising Activities: Implementation of innovations with potential to change the system, prototyping, piloting, learning by doing Co-Presencing
  15. 15. Working as a network• The seemingly interminably slow process of influencing policy requires a long-term perspective: – Need to be persistent, to adopt an informed, supportive, flexible and adaptive approach. – gradual strengthening of networks allows trust to be built while securing diverse representatives as a key source of legitimacy and, hence, influence.

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