Intermediary innovation, evaluation and collaboration – I-K Mediary workshop report

Earlier this year, I had the opportunity to participate in the I-K-Mediary Network Workshop which was held in Savar, Bangladesh, and jointly hosted by the Development Research Netwrok (D.Net), Bangladesh and the Institute of Development Studies (IDS), U.K.

The I-K-Mediary Network is an emerging global network of organisations that play a knowledge and information intermediary role in development with an aim to increase access to and use of research in development contexts by providing portals, gateways or reporting services. The I-K-Mediary Network aims to enhance and enable the positive impacts of information and knowledge intermediary work by increasing the effectiveness of I-K-Mediary Network members and creating a more enabling environment for their work.

4th I-K-Mediary workshop, January 2011, Savar, Bangladesh

4th I-K-Mediary workshop, January 2011, Savar, Bangladesh

Being the 4th I-K-Mediary workshop, this workshop gathered 35 research intermediaries from 21 organisations in 15 countries to share experiences, learn together and discuss future collaboration. The workshop addressed the use of theory of change and outcome mapping tools in intermediary work. It also aimed at capturing the lessons learned in different aspects of intermediary work, based on the different experiences of the participating organisations, including: designing and developing portals, working with the media, capacities and skillsets needed to be an effective intermediary and web 2.0. The workshop also explored ways in which intermediaries can demonstrate their value to stakeholders, and looked at new technical tools and initiatives.

4th I-K-Mediary workshop, January 2011, Savar, Bangladesh

4th I-K-Mediary workshop, January 2011, Savar, Bangladesh

A report capturing the thinking and learning that emerged from the workshop and entailing its sessions and events has just been published. The report outlines the key learnings from the workshop as follows:

  • Demonstrating the value of intermediary work can help lead to more effective relationships with stakeholders
  • The Network has a key role to play in capturing lessons learned for intermediary work
  • Using Theory of Change and Outcome Mapping tools in conjunction can be useful for exploring the impact of intermediary work
  • Collaboration and innovation between intermediaries remain central to the Networks’ objectives

Finally the report outlines seven collaborative activities that the network will be working on together: mapping of intermediary services, online skills sharing, theory and principles of knowledge intermediation, exchange visits, intermediary events on behalf of the I-K-Mediary Network, an M&E toolkit/framework/methodology, and a translation tool.

You can download the workshop report and learn more about the I-K Mediary activities on the network website at www.ikmediarynetwork.org.

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