UNiTED has been implementing scientific research activities since early 2010. We do this in cooperation with various educational institutions. Students from these institutions apply for a position at UNiTED. Topics are based on the needs that are presented by local authorities, communities and organizations. Once a student, the education and UNiTED agree on cooperation, the preparation phase starts. Every research starts with a design based on literature research. This serves as a guide for research implementation. With the design UNiTED seeks approval from the relevant authorities in the area. After approval the implementation phase starts.
The student comes to Ghana to implement the research design. Data are collected in the field using various methods like semi-structured interviews, surveys, focus group discussions and desk research. We aim to use visual tools (see picture) in the implementation of the methods. All collected data are handled with great confidentiality. This means no personal information is recorded or used. Data remain the possession of UNiTED and will not be distributed without the necessary approval.
Qualitative research was conducted on:
- Health needs
- Health education needs
- Maternal health needs
- Maternal health care services
- Newborn health
- HIV / AIDS
- eHealth in maternal care
Each research is concluded with a focus group discussion, presentation and report. These tools are meant to communicate the results back to the various stakeholders, to discuss possible solutions and activities, and to discuss further actions. In many cases research has led to the review of an existing project, or the design of a new one by the UNiTED team. With all the valuable information gathered through qualitative research, UNiTED's projects have a strong foundation that respond to community needs. In our current strategic plan the focus lies on quantitative research with the aim to assess the impact of UNiTED's projects.