Knowledge Platform on Inclusive Development Policies

INCLUDE, the Knowledge Platform on Inclusive Development Policies aims to facilitate a better understanding of how to make growth and development in Africa more inclusive. High growth figures in many African countries have not yet led to sufficient employment growth and poverty reduction. By developing a focused research and knowledge agenda, the Platform contributes to understanding why this is the case in order to establish more knowledge and evidence-based development policies.

Mission of INCLUDE

The Knowledge Platform on Inclusive Development Policies was established in June 2012. In the Knowledge Platform researchers from the Netherlands and African developing countries work together with the private sector, NGOs and government. At the first meeting, the Platform agreed on its overarching theme: Making Development in Africa More Inclusive. The Platform aims to expand its knowledge network and activities for sharing knowledge on inclusive development in Africa. Its members emphasize that there is already a wealth of knowledge; the challenge is to make that knowledge ‘work’ for policy-makers and practitioners.

Knowledge Agenda of INCLUDE

While most African countries have registered high growth in the last decade, this does not yet translate sufficiently in poverty reduction. Productive employment is the key to ensure that vulnerable and poor groups, especially young people and women, benefit from growth. This requires policies for economic transformation and inclusive employment policies. However, such inclusive policies can only be realized if they are supported by coalitions of strategic actors across the state and society that can overcome resistance to change among the ruling political and commercial elites.

To promote policy relevance, there is a strong focus on country-specific research that embeds dialogue between researchers, policymakers and practitioners right from the outset. The Platform has established a research programme, for which calls for proposals have been published by NWO. Each call focuses on a key aspect of inclusive growth and elimination of extreme poverty in African partner countries:

  1. Promoting productive employment. The objective is to support research on promoting productive employment in Sub-Saharan African partner countries and a research-supported dialogue on employment promoting policies and policy implementation.
  2. Identifying and supporting strategic actors for inclusive development. The objective is to investigate the role that (coalitions of) strategic actors can play, or can be encouraged to play, in the implementation of policies that favour long-term   inclusive development in Sub Saharan African partner countries.
  3. Social Protection. The objective of this call is to enhance insight in the cost-effectiveness of social protection interventions in achieving inclusive growth, compared to other social policies that aim to achieve the same objective.

Structure of INCLUDE

In the Knowledge Platform researchers from the Netherlands and African countries work together with the private sector, civil society organizations and government. The Platform consists of an equal number of African and Dutch professionals.

The Steering Group of the Knowledge Platform is composed of African and Dutch experts from knowledge institutions and the Dutch government. The Steering Group is responsible for guiding the daily organization of the Knowledge Platform and decides on the Platform’s research agenda, based on discussion and views expressed by Platform members.

The Secretariat of the Platform is hosted at the African Studies Centre (ASC) in Leiden and is a consortium of the African Economic Research Consortium (AERC), the International Institute of Social Studies (ISS/EUR), The Broker and the ASC.

For more information visit the website www.includeplatform.net or contact the Platform secretariat: info@includeplatform.net.

Photo by UN Women Gallery via Flickr

About this knowledge platform

INCLUDE, the Knowledge Platform on Inclusive Development Policies, aims to facilitate a better understanding of how to make growth and development in Africa more inclusive. High growth figures in many African countries have not yet led to sufficient employment growth and poverty reduction. By developing a focused research and knowledge agenda, the Platform contributes to understanding why this is the case in order to establish more knowledge and evidence-based development policies.

Website: www.includeplatform.net