At the interface between the formal and informal, the actual and the real: a realist study protocol for governance and accountability practices in urban settings focusing on adolescent sexual and reproductive health and rights

Research output: Contribution to journalA1: Web of Science-articlepeer-review

2 Downloads (Pure)


Background: This paper presents the protocol of a study that aims at exploring how different multi-level governance arrangements impact on sexual and reproductive health of adolescents living in informal settlements. The overall objective of this study is to contribute to a better understanding of the causal chains underlying accountability in sexual and reproductive health for adolescent girls and young women living in urban informal settlements in low-and middle-income countries.
Methods: The overarching methodology is realist evaluation. The study adopts a case study design, through which governance and accountability practices in Mumbai, Delhi, Cotonou and Kampala will be examined. Different social science methods to develop and test a programme theory will be used. Heuristic tools for the analysis of the account- ability ecosystem and mapping of governance arrangements, drawing from contextual political analysis and critical realism, will be developed in order to identify the intervention-context-actor-mechanism-outcome configurations.
Discussion: The methodological approach is geared towards building robust case-based explanation with due attention to context and the roles of different actors. The combination of different social science methods will lead us to a better grasp of the inherently political nature of social accountability.
Keywords: Accountability, Local governance, Sexual and reproductive health and rights, Urban health, Local health system, Realist evaluation
Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal for Equity in Health
Issue numberSuppl.1
Pages (from-to)40
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - 2022

Cite this