The research-practitioner divide: Why we are still optimistic

Researchers and development practitioners don’t often team up to co-lead large global projects for a number of reasons. They have different audiences, timelines, and motivations, making collaboration, let alone co-management, challenging. Researchers tend to design and test innovations and work at the global level with a long-term perspective. Practitioners, on the other hand, tend to scale innovations, work on local livelihood improvements, and focus on the present. But even though this type of partnership isn’t very common, we each need the other to be able to solve seemingly intractable global problems like hunger and poverty.

Photo: Marc Charles Wanume