At the PEGNet Conference 2009 the first PEGNet Best Practice Award for effective cooperation between research and practice was granted to the project submitted by: Veronica Amarante and Andrea Vigorito from the University of Uruguay and her colleagues at the Ministry of Social Development in Uruguay.
The Best Practice award committee consisted of two researchers and two “practitioners”:
Rainer Thiele, founding member of PEGNet and senior researcher in the “Poverty Reduction, Equity and Development” Group at the Kiel Institute for the World Economy,
Michael Grimm, Professor of Applied Development Economics, International Institute of Social Studies,
Rita Tesselar, from the Policy and Operations Evaluation Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the Netherlands,
and Gerhard Ressel, from the Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development in Germany.
The criteria for assessment were:
The relevance of the research questions: Does research address the right questions in the policy/project context?
The design of the link between research and practice/policy-making: Do the processes ensure that research findings find their way into policies/projects?
Quality of research: Does the research use state of the art scientific techniques?
Capacity building and sustainability of partnership: Are the partnerships between researchers and practitioners, as well as those between North and South (where applicable) designed to be sustainable?
Originality of dissemination: Are there original efforts to disseminate research findings (a) to specific user groups e.g. within administrations and/or (b) to a wider public or community?
Based on these criteria, the committee decided to award the first PEGNet prize for best practice in the cooperation between research and practice to the project submitted by:
Veronica Amarante and Andrea Vigorito from the University of Uruguay and her colleagues at the Ministry of Social Development in Uruguay.
This project convinced all committee members and impressed in particular by the quality of cooperation, its direct link between research and policy-making and the quality of the capacity building component which was, in addition, South-South and not, as so often, North-South.