Developing a Sustainable Nutrition Research Agenda in Sub-Saharan Africa - Findings from the SUNRAY Project

Lachat et al. (2014) full text summary PDF

For which topic were research priorities identified?

nutrition

In which location was the research priority setting conducted?

Africa

Why was it conducted at all?

Despite considerable economic growth in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), undernutrition rates have not improved compared to other parts of the world. In addition, diet-related noncommunicable diseases have emerged as a public health issue in SSA. Emerging threats, including climatic and demographic changes, affect the nutritional status of populations in SSA and will require effective and innovative mitigation measures. At the same time, there are concerns that scarce resources for actions to improve nutrition are not focused on the interventions with the highest effectiveness. International commitment to address malnutrition has increased, partly because of global food insecurity concerns, academic consensus on effective actions, and the inclusion of nutritional indicators in the Millennium Development Goals. In 2010, the European Commission called for projects to help establish research priorities, strengthen commitment, and identify resource needs, synergies, and coordinated research efforts on a European and global level to tackle malnutrition. The SUNRAY (Sustainable Nutrition Research for Africa in the Years to come) project was selected for funding.

What was the objective?

to define priorities for research themes and actions to create an enabling research environment from the perspective of stakeholders in nutrition in sub-Saharan Africa

What was the outcome?

a list of 3 research areas

How long did the research prioritization take?

No information provided.

Which methods were used to identify research priorities?

workshop

How were the priorities for research identified exactly?

Step 1: literature reviews. Step 2: workshop: 3 regional workshops: plenary presentations on current nutrition research, small group discussions: participants asked to collect research priorities, small group discussions to identify criteria to rank topics, participants then asked to rank topics, plenary presentations of rankings, group discussion on steps needed to achieve research on priorities, external stakeholders were involved to help build research agenda

Which stakeholders took part?

Researchers, policymakers, government officials, UN agencies, NGOs, bilateral donors, private sector. 117 participants.

How were stakeholders recruited?

No information provided.

Were stakeholders actively involved or did they just participate?

Stakeholders were mere participants of the research prioritization process; they were not actively involved in the process.