Poor sexual and reproductive health is a source of enormous suffering for millions of the world's poorest people. High levels of mortality and morbidity as a result of sexual and reproductive health problems compromise efforts to reduce poverty. Yet in many countries the issues remain invisible and taboo. Despite two decades of sustained effort, sexual and reproductive rights are poorly understood and articulated and progress on improving sexual and reproductive health indicators is slow.
We aim to respond to these challenges, using research to raise the profile of sexual and reproductive health and rights in developing countries and working in partnership to find innovative solutions.
New Realising Rights Research Synthesis on population, fertility and family planning with a focus on Sub-Saharan Africa (pdf, 1MB)
Summer 2010 Realising Rights newsletter (pdf) or online
Coundown to 2015: joint RPC conference report
New briefs on marital rape from APHRC
>> Marital Rape and its Impacts: A Policy Briefing for Kenyan Members of Parliament (pdf)
>> The reality behind the words: An information resource about marital rape in Kenya (pdf)
New research briefs from
>> Men's health matters (pdf)
>> SRH concerns of Bangladeshi Males (pdf)
>> Sexuality and power (pdf)
Countdown to 2015: Challenging orthodoxies related to SRH and HIV
17 & 18 May 2010
Realising Rights were one of the four DFID-funded Research Programme Consortia (RPC) who jointly organised this international conference. All four RPCs involved work on sexual and reproductive health (SRH) and HIV and AIDS and are concerned with difficult, controversial and sometimes neglected issues.
>> What happened at the conference
>> Conference programme (pdf)
>> Conference report (pdf)
New APHRC policy briefs
>> Protecting in-school adolescents from HIV/AIDS, STI's and unwanted pregnancy (pdf)
>> The maternal health challenges in poor urban communities in Kenya (pdf)
Man trouble? Working with men on gender, power and violence
A seminar at IDS in March led to a lively debate on these issues.
>> Read the write up
Realising Rights project shortlisted for a British Medical Journal (BMJ) award
Realising Rights Research Programme Consortium have been working as part of SHHEP to understand how to encourage decision makers to use their findings. This work has been shortlisted for a BMJ award.
>> Read about SHHEP in the BMJ news (pdf)
New! Realising Rights affiliates launch a website on sex work
To mark International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers the Paulo Longo Research Initiative have launched a website designed to make research on sex work more accessible.
>>Read more about the PLRI website on sex work
>>Go directly to the PLRI site
New! ID21 insights
As part of our research into the policy process we have worked in partnership with ID21 and the other DFID funded Research Programme Consortia exploring HIV, AIDS and sexual and reproductive health to produce an issue of insights.
>> Read about the insights on the DFID Communications Corner
>> Find out more about our work in this area and view the presentations from our meeting in Liverpool
>> Check out an online copy of insights on the Institute of Development Studies website
Winter 2009 newsletter
Now availiable as a pdf or online
Realising Rights in the News
Colleagues from the James P Grant School of Public Health, BRAC University hosted a workshop on promoting sexuality and rights issues in society in relation to HIV/AIDS.
Participation in the EURONGOs annual conference
Hilary Standing of IDS made a presentation on the economic costs of unsafe abortion at the EURONGOs meeting, “Investing in Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights in Times of Economic Crisis”.
How can we get research into policy and practice?
We have been working with the other Research Programme Consortia focussed on sexual and reproductive health and HIV/AIDS to review the ways we have communicated our work to influence policy and practice.
>> Watch videos, read reports and view PowerPoint presentations that tell you more about our research into influencing policy and practice
APHRC in Health Exchange news with an article on innovations in health research
The UK All Party Parliamentary Group on Debt, Aid and Trade, the Institute of Development Studies Sexuality and Development Programme and the Realising Rights Research Programme Consortium are co-sponsoring an event in the House of Commons. Attendance is open to all.
>> print the invite (pdf)
>> read more
Realising Rights newsletter
Our Spring edition is now availiable online or as a pdf.
London School of Hygeine and Tropical Medicine wins 2009 annual Gates award for Global Health.
>> read more
STIs and HIV in Pakistan
A recent study from Realising Rights published as a special issue in the journal Sexually Transmitted Infections seeks to understand the drivers of sexually transmitted infections in Pakistan.
An article written by Rose Oronje from APHRC explores why sexual and reproductive health rights remain an issue of controversy and misunderstanding in Africa and what can be done to address this.
>> read the article
John Cleland awarded CBE
John Cleland, Realising Rights researcher from London School of Hygeine and Tropical Medicine was awarded the CBE in the recent Queen's Birthday Honours for services to Social Science.
Can someone tell me how babies are made?
New article from Realising Rights Kate Hawkins
We have a new US Administration
Read an article on this from Realising Rights member Kate Hawkins on the Steps Centre blog, The Crossing.
Realising Rights held their annual planning meeting in Accra, Ghana hosted by INDEPTH Network.
>> read newspaper article
UK Parliament hearings into maternal morbidity
UK All Party Parliamentary Group on Population, Development and Reproductive Health held their hearings on maternal morbidity this week. At the hearings the Department for International Development announced their decision to draft a strategy on sexual and reproductive health and maternal health.
>>Realising Rights evidence to the enquiry
>>London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine evidence to the enquiry (pdf)
Ghana partners in the news
Coverage of our workshop 'Enforcement of Reproductive rights Laws and Policies' was picked up by Ghanaweb. In the article Nana Oye argues that legal abortion and family planning should be factored into the National Health Insurance Scheme to reduce the maternal mortality rate in Ghana.
Painful Tradeoffs: Intimate partner violence and sexual and reproductive health and rights in Kenya
IDS Working Paper paper now available.
>>Download the Working Paper (pdf)
'Metaphors we Love By' makes an impact
Work by our partner African Population and Health Research Center suggests that analysing the metaphors young people use while talking about sex can provide valuable insights into the ways in which youth understand sex, sexual behaviour, and sexual relationships.
>> Talking about sex: Using youth language in sexuality education
>> Read about it on the Communication Initiative website
>> The Joyfulmamilsa blog picked up the research
Rethinking Sexuality and Policy
This publication from the Institute of Development Studies in the UK explores the link between sexuality and the norms that are set for sexual relations by policies and politics, including social norms and gender dynamics, national policies and international relations.
Focus on access to basic services
Our colleagues in Kenya have been featured in a number of news stories on sanitation and access to healthcare in urban areas.
>> Interview with Dr. Alex Ezeh on water and sanitation problems in slums, Inter-press Service News Agency
>> Interview with Dr. Eliya Zulu on Healthcare hurdles in Nairobi slums with IRIN news
>> Article Published in Kenya’s Daily Nation on Disease Burden among the urban poor
Reproductive health issues in the news in Kenya
Rose Oronje from the African Population and Health Research Center placed an article with the Inter Press Service News Agency - 'Women's Choices Change Cities'.
Africa faces daunting challenges in improving its population well-being
Research from our partners in Kenya and the Population Reference Bureau shows that even as African women use family planning more and bear fewer children, the continent’s youthful population will fuel the continent’s growth for many decades to come.
>> Read the 2008 Africa Population Data Sheet (pdf)
>> Media briefing available (pdf)
Engaging civil society on maternal and child health in Ghana
INDEPTH Network was represented at the Annual Health Forum of Civil Society Organizations in Health by Ayaga A. Bawah. He presented on mapping health outcomes and what civil society could do to prevent maternal and child deaths.
John Cleland, from our partner London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, was featured in the Nature podcast
Blogging on the Millennium Development Goals
Realising Rights have entered into the debates around maternal health on the UN blog to accompany the High Level Event on the MDGs.
Briefing on masculinity
Gender inequalities are shaping how the HIV epidemic evolves and in order to engage men as ‘part of the solution’ we must deal with issues of male power. Read Men, Sex and HIV: Directions for Politicising Masculinities (pdf).
New journal article
Our colleague from Kenya, Joanna Crichton, has been published in Health Policy and Planning writing on family planning content within national health policy.
Monograph from BRAC now available to download
Learn about the practices and restrictions surrounding menstruation, concerns surrounding infertility and its causes and the patterns of health seeking behaviour of Bangladeshi women to treat their
menstrual illnesses. (pdf)
Unsafe abortion the cause of an estimated 15% of maternal deaths.
Take a peek at some of the PowerPoint presentations or view Realising Rights PowerPoint presentations on slideshare.net
12 million people are infected with syphilis each year despite the means to prevent onward transmission and the existence of screening technologies and inexpensive treatment. This factsheet explains how policy makers can help tackle syphilis as part of their work on reproductive and maternal health. (pdf)