CCAFS team looked at the East Africa impact pathway in order to discuss how KMC can be built in. Impact pathways can be seen as a planning tool; a more structured way to achieve goals.

Key question: in terms of comms + KM, what do we need to achieve a milestone? An Outcome?

CCAFS East Africa Impact Pathway:
Milestone: national position on evidence: CCAFS to change the way they do research, MoA/E ministers. Activities: scientific evidence. Output: NAP/NAMA.
Outcome: Regional and International positions based on evidence and national positions & IARC to change the way they do research
Impact: enabling policy environment, integrated policy environment

One: Strategy on how you communicate evidence to effect change: the actual way you present information, the amount of information you present, the types of data (balance between data evidence and case studies)

Information needs study of MoA, MoE, MoT ministers - if we are going to provide demand driven information, we need to understand what the demand is.
  • what type of evidence they need
  • the level of detail
  • the format
  • medium

Two: Strategy on how to convince change-agents and next-users to listen to and collaborate with CCAFS

  • Understand their attitudes and behaviors now, identify challenges to collaboration with CCAFS, identify reasons why people would collaborate with CCAFS, develop a communication strategy which identifies key messages that will help trigger collaboration, and messages/themes/tones to avoid workshops with informed CCAFS staff
  • convince countries to work with CCAFS: understand why they wouldn't want to work with CCAFS, why they would, so we can focus our communications around cues which trigger their tendencies to collaborate with CCAFS - rather then trigger barriers (governments) communication challenges and strategies to overcome those challenges
  • convince partners of CCAFS strategies to enhance outreach: again we need to understand partners, identify drivers and barriers, focus on drivers (MET agencies, private sector, donors, farmer orgs, NGOs) - change agents

Challenge number one: turning activities into outputs

Challenge number two: Start with multiple outputs and then synthesize to create a common strategy or output, possibly three outputs with very strategic themes - rather than bombarding with multiple outputs and multiple messages
  • getting the themes to go through the EA team in order to make synthesis possible BUT all the teams have their own change-agent contacts so they go directly to them - this is a challenge for 'Engaging/ Influence type' communication but not for the 'Promoting CCAFS' type communications

Challenge number three: integrating communicators and researchers

Communication process to integrate researchers
  1. Communicators and researchers spending time together to identify roles, responsibilities
  2. Communicators and Regional Leaders spending time together to understand change-agent needs and identify demand - communication objectives
  3. Communicators and researchers spend time together to develop key messages that naturally fall out of the research - also using business plans, etc
  4. Communicators bring together the needs of change-agents and messages of researchers to create a communication strategy
  5. Communicators and researchers spend time to identify priority activities and outputs annually which will meet that demand - communication products (synthesis products, knowledge sharing, bringing region and change agents together)

  • Every region needs a strategy about how you communicate to effect change
  • Evidence priorities need to determine communications messages

  • Demand-driven IARC requires us to work out what the demands are AND for regional leaders to promote CCAFS' communication services (as a communication department we need to clearly communicate our capacities and our desire to get involved to regional leaders - do we need some case studies how communications can help, catalogue of communication capacities, include the map of communications collaborations, develop some info-graphics to show how social media impacts research output) WHAT WE CAN DO TOGETHER. WHAT CAN BE DONE IN COMMUNCIATIONS - not what we can do for you

Action points
  • Determine when and how does the communications team participate in the development of the impact pathways, will vary by region - what role does the CU communicators play, what role do all the theme communicators play in the regional impact pathways?
  • Integration of communication into the impact pathway process - how and when
  • Meeting for each region, with regional communicators and all theme communicators. Responsible: Region communicators
  • Together with CRP Water Land and Ecosystems, create a tool to document and share the "Unique Selling Point" of Knowledge Management and Communication for achieving CRP impact. Goal 1) develop a shared understanding of what it is we are trying to do; 2) get buy-in from senior management on importance of KMC for achieving impact. Lead: Vanessa coordinate the development of the presentation and the development of supporting materials. together with Michael Victor (WLE) with inputs from members of CCAFS keycomms
    • Includes: case studies of success stories and catalogue of different communications capacities (infographics, collaboration map)
    • Evidence for different of communications tools
    • Create a plan of how to communicate that (communications session into science week? - what can communications do to facilitate partnership development and the communication of cutting edge scientists)
    • Get successful case studies from CCAFS, CPWF, and partners (e.g. Commission report). Explore opportunities to have a scientist or a next-user to present what tools worked to influence him or her; also consider a session that puts scientists in communicators shoes
    • Sample communications plan overlaid onto impact pathways to demonstrate to regional leaders why and how the comms team should be involved in the impact pathway development: inspired by DRAFT PROPOSAL developed for CRP on Roots, Tubers and Bananas
  • All communicators to inform science leaders that they are coming to the science meeting; Vanessa can provide some bullet points to help people make their cases.
  • Torben to ensure there is space in the 2014 Science Meeting to discuss communications