AO: Early efforts by IDRC learned that linking and sharing information did not necessarily translate into collaboration and synthesis (3). Analyses found the “importance of participation, context-specific structures, committed donor support, and leadership. While the networks were successful at linking individuals, and moving toward collaborative research, there were questions about sustainability, capacity require- ments, and higher costs (Willard and Creech 2006). Furthermore, it became evident that linking around a common theme or purpose does not automatically lend itself toward the desired outcome of collaboration and synthesis.” (3)
AO: “synthesis is viewed as a process whereby knowledge from a variety of sources is summarised and critically appraised, and was envisioned as including a broad array of activities and research outputs. Synthesis outputs include academic papers, policy briefs, blogs, videos, maps, conference panels, and media articles.” (4)
AO: The analysts describe the importance of (1) responsive funding, (2) the use and facilitation of collaborative spaces, (3) pro- grammatic leadership, and (4) being strategic in order to strengthen the enabling environment for collaboration and synthesis.
AO: The analysts hold that “Being strategic, and clearly communicating that vision, ensures that individuals involved are aware of why the topic and audience have been selected and the intended purpose” is very important as well as “critically reflecting about potential collaborative synthesis, rather than pursuing it as a good in and of itself.”
AO: The analysts mention the importance of strengthening the way that collaborative spaces are facilitated, and enlivening spaces where individuals are better able to interact, know one another identify mutual interests and then develop collaborative projects. (9).