This is the report of an evaluation of Swedish development bilateral research cooperation activities that aim to strengthen research capacity in Mozambique, Tanzania, Bolivia and Nicaragua, thus increasing their access to knowledge in areas of central importance for poverty-reducing development. The programmes in the four countries focused on capacity building of individual staff members, research infrastructure and, to a lesser extent, improvements in research management. Some key lessons learnt include that while research activities supported were of developmental relevance, results of the Sida/SAREC research projects do not easily find their way to outside users in the public or private sectors. These research programmes also hardly interface with Sida projects and programmes in the countries. It was recommended that research capacity building should be incorporated into teaching programme. A long-term commitment, with a clear vision and a focused approach, should also be adopted to sustain of the benefits of the Sida/SAREC bilateral research cooperation.