Institute for Global Health


QCN Evaluation

How does a multi-country, multilateral network focused on specific health care improvements evolve and what shapes its ability to achieve its goals?

Project Summary 

To tackle a shared low- and middle-income country need for improved labour, childbirth and newborn care, the World Health Organisation and global partners are pursuing a 'global network' approach called The Network for Improving Quality of Care for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (QCN).

Their aim is for countries to learn from each other about which approaches to improving quality of care may work best in which circumstances to achieve shared health outcome goals. The QCN aims to promote coordination between partners while emphasising country ownership and leadership, and shared learning. 

This project seeks to evaluate the emergence, legitimacy and effectiveness of this multi-lateral multi-country purposefully created implementation-focused network to improve the quality of care for maternal, newborn and child health.

We will study the QCN global level, and national and local levels, as well as the global-national and national-local level, in three case study countries: Bangladesh, Malawi and Uganda. 

The overall aim of this research project is to examine and improve the QCN theory of change (currently the role of the network is not articulated) and to explore how country level impacts are created. As a result, we aim to develop a generalizable theory of change to improve the operation of the QCN and similar global networks. 

Via a multi-disciplinary mixed methods programme of work, this research will draw on theories concerning: network organisation and structure, emergence and effectiveness of networks, the policy process (agenda-setting, formulation, decision-making, implementation and evaluation), the nature of power and agency in relation to structure, and diffusion of innovation.

Links to other research

Other research from the Centre for the Health of Women, Children and Adolescents

Other research from IGH on Maternal Health, Newborn Health, Health Care and Health Systems

Other research from IGH in Bangladesh, Malawi and Uganda