IDEAS – Informed Decisions for Actions in Maternal and Newborn Health


IDEAS is a measurement, learning and evaluation project based at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (LSHTM). The project aims to find out “what works, why, and how” for maternal and newborn health in three low-resource settings in Nigeria, India, and Ethiopia. The IDEAS team includes 20 research and professional support staff, living in Abuja, Addis Ababa, London, and New Delhi, who have been working since 2010 with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (the foundation) and with the foundation’s implementation partners.

IDEAS contribute to the evidence base by using standardised approaches to evaluate maternal and newborn health programmes across multiple projects and countries.

  • Studying the scale-up of innovations in maternal and newborn health.
  • Testing the theory underlying the foundation’s maternal and newborn health strategy.
  • Strengthening capacity in measurement, learning and evaluation.

You can learn more about findings and knowledge from the first seven years of the project in the Informed Decisions for Actions in Maternal and Newborn Health 2010-2017 Report and on the IDEAS project website.

This summer IDEAS will be hosting a seminar series scheduled for July to October 2018 to present methods and results of IDEAS Phase 1 looking at the following six areas of research:

  • Characterising complexity in maternal and newborn health innovations in Nigeria, Ethiopia and India. Ms Krystyna Makowiecka
  • Do innovations enhance interactions between families and front-line health workers in Nigeria, Ethiopia and India? Dr Tanya Marchant
  • Understanding behaviour change in maternal and newborn health in Ethiopia and Nigeria. Dr Zelee Hill
  • How and why does scale-up happen? Dr Neil Spicer
  • Improving local health decision-making through the Data-Informed Platform for Health. Dr Bilal Avan
  • Evaluation of Community-Based Newborn Care in Ethiopia. Dr Bilal Avan and Dr Della Berhanu

For more details see our events page.