Evidence to Action

How can we enable healthy and equitable cities in which young people can flourish?

An exciting collaboration between the Melbourne Centre for Cities and the philanthropic organisation Fondation Botnar is supporting the development of an Evidence to Action (E2A) Framework - a learning and evidence-building framework to guide the evaluation of urban programming, towards enhancing the wellbeing of children and young people in secondary cities of the Global South.

Phase one of this project entailed an evidence review and interviews with leading urban practitioners. It resulted in a discussion paper on key principles to inform an equitable and transformative process of building evidence and action, which supports young people’s wellbeing. It outlines a value-driven approach which seeks to harness the power of digital transformation as well as ‘mundane innovations’, through processes which are inclusive, equitable, and empowering for young people.

In Phase two the project delivered a comprehensive E2A Framework and Summary Guide. This Framework outlines the fundamental principles and key strategic actions for mobilising evidence at the programmatic level to foster collective, citywide action which enhances young people’s wellbeing. Grounded in the voices of young people across secondary cities, expert practitioners in the Global South, and informed by examples of meaningful participation and deep partnerships across diverse urban stakeholders, the E2A Framework aims to shape learning and action on issues of child and adolescent wellbeing in urban environments.

In Phase three, the E2A Framework was launched globally, through a four-part dialogue series. This virtual seminar session brings together established youth experts and practitioners, with emerging leaders and activists, to discuss key thematic areas of the framework: empowered youth and communities; equitable partnerships; effective city systems; and transformative innovation.


Fattah, K., Marathe, R., Butcher, S., Das, J. (2021), Evidence to Action Dialogue Series: Young Peoples’ Wellbeing in Southern Cities. University of Melbourne. Online resource.

Butcher, S., Das, J., Dam, J., Fattah, K., Hausmann, S. (2021), Evidence to Action (E2A) Framework: A Participatory Approach to Action Learning - Summary Guide. University of Melbourne. Online resource.

Butcher, S., Das, J., Dam, J., Fattah, K., Hausmann, S. (2021), Evidence to Action (E2A) Framework: A Participatory Approach to Action Learning. University of Melbourne. Online resource.

The Evidence to Action for Young People’s Wellbeing in Southern Cities was a four-part dialogue series organised by the Connected Cities Lab at the University of Melbourne and Fondation Botnar - a Swiss philanthropic foundation with a mandate to promote wellbeing of young people across cities in the global South.

Taking place between April and July 2021 these dialogue sessions were facilitated by global youth leaders and will feature voices from international development practitioners, youth experts, academics, policymakers, and city officials.

The aim was to engage in an intergenerational dialogue around learning and evidence building on effective approaches, strategies, principles, and actions for empowering young people, establishing meaningful partnerships, sustainable transformations of city systems, and fostering innovations towards making cities fit for young people.

The dialogue series was designed to reflect the themes of Fondation Botnar’s E2A Framework.

Project Team

Project partners