This paper documents the way in which the “Stamp Out Sleeping Sickness” (SOS) Campaign in Uganda made use of research knowledge to have large-scale impact on the livelihoods and health of rural people in its target area. The SOS campaign mobilised private and public resources to control the deadly disease of human sleeping sickness, using mass treatment of cattle to destroy trypanosomes, the parasites that cause human sleeping sickness but also live in cattle, and insecticidal spraying of cattle to control the tsetse flies that are vectors of both human sleeping sickness and the related disease of trypanosomiasis in cattle. The research knowledge used to create the SOS campaign was communicated through a variety of formal and informal channels, within a web of institutional and personal connections between the main actors. This paper provides a detailed description of the SOS Campaign in order to consider the complex ways in which research knowledge can be put to policy use, and the complex factors that facilitate or encourage that process.
RIU Discussion Paper 8, 43 pp.