EVIPNet Europe train-the-trainers workshop
From 14 to 17 October 2014, a year after its pilot launch, the Evidence-Informed Policy Network (EVIPNet) Europe, held its second multi-country meeting; a train-the-trainers (TTT) workshop on using research evidence for policy-making (EIP) in Bled, Slovenia. EVIPNet Europe builds country capacity to develop evidence-informed policies on health systems, and support the implementation of WHO’s European policy framework Health 2020.
Objectives of the workshop
18 participants from the EVIPNet Europe country teams and the Heads of the Country Offices gathered from 12 Member States. The main purpose of the workshop was to exchange experiences and lessons learned, and to increase knowledge and skills in facilitation techniques for participants to become future facilitators of EVIPNet workshops.
The objectives of the EVIPNet Europe TTT workshop were to:
- enhance participants’ skills in acquiring, assessing, adapting and applying research evidence;
- learn the fundamentals of how to prepare evidence briefs for policy and organize policy dialogues (materials are referenced below); and
- train participants to become facilitators for future EVIPNet Europe capacity building events.
The three and a half day workshop covered three major components. It began with introductory presentations on EIP as well as EVIPNet Europe's mandate, methods and current activities. This was followed by a rich and vibrant exchange of experiences and lessons learned from pilot countries, mainly Slovenia, the Republic of Moldova and Tajikistan, which have embarked on a situation analysis of national EIP landscapes and opportunities.
The workshop proceeded with technical sessions on EIP, presentations, practical group work and hands-on exercises through which participants were familiarized with specific EIP approaches; learned how to find and appraise research evidence; and apply EIP tools such as the evidence-brief for policy and policy dialogues. Finally, the workshop focused on teaching methodologies and facilitation techniques.
Strengthening of the regional EIP network
Participants left feeling empowered as EIP champions and future workshop facilitators. One of the participants stated in plenary that, "This has been the best training. I was able to learn from the facilitators and get motivated and energized from the other participants, which is necessary for us to keep going.” This experience was echoed by other participants.
The opportunity to meet face-to-face with other EVIPNet Europe champions was invaluable and indispensable to increase capacity and it has also allowed members to build close ties, share resources, information and mutual support. The EVIPNet Europe Secretariat continues to work closely with its Member States to strengthen this network of excellence and roll it out to other countries in the Region.