Afrobarometer has successfully concluded its Round 10 Planning Meeting in Ghana, setting the stage for the network’s next series of surveys expected to be conducted in 40 African countries. The weeklong gathering brought together high-profile policy makers and thought leaders as well as the network’s national partners, board members, and International Advisory Council.
Participants formulated strategic plans, exchanged practical insights, and engaged in spirited discussions to enhance Afrobarometer’s impact in Africa. The event brought together a diverse range of voices and expertise, highlighting a shared dedication to empowering African citizens in shaping policies that promote sustainable development.
Key highlights and takeaways
In her keynote address opening the meeting, former Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, a member of Afrobarometer’s International Advisory Council, emphasised the importance of continuous capacity building for research, analysis, and communication across Africa.
“Investing in research and building the capacity of African researchers and policy makers is crucial for evidence-based decision-making and sustainable development in our continent,” she said.
Afrobarometer CEO Joseph Asunka added, “If democracy is indeed a government of the people, by the people, and for the people, then the people’s voice and lived experiences must count in policy and development decisions that affect their lives.”
The memorable opening ceremony featured a compelling conversation between the co-founders of Afrobarometer, professors E. Gyimah-Boadi, Robert Mattes, and Michael Bratton. The trio took the audience on a journey, recounting their decision, more than two decades ago, to merge their respective research projects and the remarkable progress made since then.
Days 2 and 3 of the meeting were dedicated to hands-on work on the survey questionnaire and implementation planning, beginning with a debriefing of Round 9 and an overview of the latest innovations. Participants reviewed and refined new modules for the Round 10 questionnaire and provided valuable insights for country-specific questions. Other highlights included:
Empowering data-driven analysis: Afrobarometer’s director of analysis led discussions on data analysis and publications. Participants explored innovative approaches to unlock the potential of data-driven research, enabling evidence-based decision making and driving positive change in African societies.
Leveraging communication channels: A session was dedicated to harnessing the power of communication, particularly through social media platforms, to amplify the voices of African citizens. Participants explored ways to effectively disseminate research findings and engage diverse stakeholders to drive meaningful dialogue and inform policies.
Commitment to quality control: Led by Afrobarometer’s head of data management, participants analysed and prepared for quality-control measures to strengthen the data collection process. Upholding the highest standards, Afrobarometer remains committed to delivering accurate and reliable findings that policy makers and stakeholders can trust.
Recognition and networking: The Round 10 Planning Meeting provided an occasion to honour long-serving Afrobarometer staff and national partners.
Members of the Afrobarometer International Advisory Council also convened under the chairmanship of US Ambassador Johnnie Carson to discuss Round 9 survey findings, explore strategies for enhanced global exposure, and share recommendations for the launch of Afrobarometer signature products and events.