Utafiti Sera is a dedicated and well thought out scheme that supports, builds and enhances a community of researchers and policy actors working together to ensure that appropriate and negotiated policy actions and uptake occur either through programmes, legislations, high quality policy debates, policy design or administrative and other forms of civic actions around issues for which there is either research evidence or rigorous synthesis of available knowledge.
We use the concept of a house to represent a place, forum and a vehicle for shared knowledge and experiences to enhance research evidence uptake. The houses provide resources, facilitation and support in generating research evidence geared toward influencing policy change. As a ‘process’, Utafiti Sera involves a sequences of activities that enable the building of a community of interests and practice from where existing and new ideas, as well as evidence flow from members of the community resulting in collective action and interventions to improve policy design and implementation. As a ‘place’, Utafiti Sera provides a space for key stakeholders with interest, power, capacity and motivation to act in diverse ways to ensure that research evidence becomes available and is used to make informed policy decisions and take appropriate actions. As a ‘forum’, Utafiti Sera it provides a non-partisan platform for knowledge engagement, ‘outreach’ and ‘in-reach’ by different members of the community irrespective of theoretical and ideological differences. This is in order to build bridges and work together to establish a common ground to pursue agreed upon goals. As a ‘vehicle’, Utafiti Sera constitutes motor and pathways, transmission belts or/and channels for shared knowledge (common areas on which there are agreements and consensus), and experiences to enhance policy uptake