About our research team

Sightsavers’ research team was established in 2010 to generate high-quality evidence to inform our programmes and advocacy work in Africa and Asia.

Watch our video to see what we do (2 mins)

We conduct research into eye health, neglected tropical diseases, inclusive education and social inclusion to ensure our projects are robust, efficient and effective.

Our researchers are experts in a range of quantitative and qualitative methods, including community-based participatory research, surveys, geospatial and economic analysis, focus groups and in-depth interviewing.

We carry out independent research and collaborate with partners on research studies and publications. Our evidence gap maps highlight where further eye health research is needed, to help inform policymakers and funders. Through our work, we’re proud to have built strong partnerships with governments, philanthropic foundations, universities and organisations of people with disabilities.

As one of the only international NGOs with Independent Research Organisation status, we’re eligible for grants from the seven UK research councils, including the Medical Research Council and the Economic and Social Research Council.

Sightsavers’ research strategy governs everything we do

Our research approach

How our research changes lives

Two women embrace in the foreground. One is an elderly woman, and the other is a young woman. The elderly woman kisses the younger woman on the cheek. The background is a building with a straw roof.

Improving eye health in Mozambique

We conduct rapid assessments of avoidable blindness to help us understand the scale and type of visual impairment. Our data shows that the prevalence of blindness in Nampula province fell by more than a third after Sightsavers helped to establish the eye department at Nampula Central Hospital.
Read the blog on our main website

A teacher in Kenya assesses a young child's learning development.

Making education inclusive in Kenya

We’re working with Sightsavers’ inclusive education team and partners to improve inclusive approaches to education. Our research is informing the adaptation of an assessment tool that can be used to measure the early learning and development of children with disabilities.
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Where we share our work


Our research is published in respected academic journals, such as Lancet Global Health, PLOS and Ophthalmic Epidemiology. In 2022, we co-edited two special issues in International Health focusing on our research in eye health and neglected tropical diseases. We follow global best practices for authorship, and we prioritise fairness and transparency.



We regularly present our research at international conferences, including American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, The Coalition for Operational Research on Neglected Tropical Diseases, What Works Summit, Comparative and International Education Society and Health Systems Global.

Interested in working with us? Email us

[email protected]

Key funders

  • The Audacious Project
  • Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
  • British Academy

  • Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office
  • Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ)

  • Irish Aid
  • Task Force for Global Health
  • Sightsavers protects sight and fights for disability rights

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