Stakeholder analysis for health research: case studies from low- and middle-income countries.
Hyder A., Syed S., Puvanachandra P., Bloom G., Sundaram S., Mahmood S., Iqbal M., Hongwen Z., Ravichandran N., Oladepo O., Pariyo G., Peters D.
OBJECTIVES: Future Health Systems: Innovations for Equity (FHS) is working in six partner countries in Asia and Africa, focusing on strengthening the research-policy interface in relation to specific health system research projects. These projects present an opportunity to study the influence of stakeholders on research and policy processes. STUDY DESIGN: Qualitative stakeholder analysis. METHODS: Stakeholder analysis was conducted in each FHS country using a structured approach. A cross-country evaluation was performed concentrating on six key areas: chosen research topic; type of intervention considered; inclusion/exclusion of stakeholder groups; general stakeholder considerations; power level, power type and agreement level of stakeholders; and classification of and approaches to identified stakeholders. RESULTS: All six countries identified a range of stakeholders but each country had a different focus. Four of the six countries identified stakeholders in addition to the guidelines, while some of the stakeholder categories were not identified by countries. The mean power level of identified stakeholders was between 3.4 and 4.5 (1=very low; 5=very high). The percentage of classified stakeholders that were either drivers or supporters ranged from 60% to 91%. CONCLUSION: Three important common areas emerge when examining the execution of the FHS country stakeholder analyses: clarity on the purpose of the analyses; value of internal vs external analysts; and the role of primary vs secondary analyses. This paper adds to the global body of knowledge on the utilization of stakeholder analysis to strengthen the research-policy interface in the developing world.