I recently learned about the work of the Partnership for Economic Policy (PEP), a non-profit which supports economists in low- and middle-income countries in doing policy-relevant research. They’ve got a massive list of interesting projects. Most strikingly, according to the conference presentation I heard about them, nearly 30% of their completed projects have been shown to have some policy influence. (Whether this is high or low I’m not quite sure, since most research firms don’t try to measure policy impact so precisely, but it’s certainly striking given the general difficulties of connecting research to policymakers.)
One thing PEP is doing really well is telling the stories of how their research came to be incorporated into policy. For the researcher in a hurry, their impact page has a series of short stories about research uptake. Going into more depth, their policy briefs also document how researchers worked with policymakers, as in these examples on cash transfers in Nigeria and taxes in Cameroon. And for conference presentations, they’ve got useful posters on the same themes, such as these on women’s employment in Senegal and microfinance in Nigeria, as well as the example above from Benin.