CORE research seeks to understand the socio-economic impacts of the pandemic, improve existing responses, and generate better policy options for recovery. In order to maximise the learning generated across the research portfolio, in parallel to leading their research activities, CORE partners have been actively engaging governments, civil society, and the scientific community, primarily at the national and regional levels.
Below are some examples of the engagement activities CORE partners have led in recent weeks. Such engagement efforts are as crucial as ever as we now enter the third year of living with Covid-19.
National and regional engagement
The Overseas Development Institute (ODI), which leads the ‘Shaping the macro-economy in response to Covid-19: A responsible economic stimulus, a stable financial sector, and a revival in exports’ project has been actively engaging national policy actors with emerging findings in several countries. This includes parliamentary and government ministry engagement in Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. In Kenya, ODI and partners are targeting national media and a brief was sent to the National Treasury in time for budget preparations. In Tanzania, the team led discussions with ministers and central bankers.
The Cambodia Development Resource Institute (CDRI), which leads ‘The impact of Covid-19 on inclusive development and democratic governance: Rapid and post-pandemic assessment in the Mekong subregion’ project, recently participated in the Ponlok Chomnes National Policy Forum, which brought together think tanks, practitioners, and policymakers to discuss emerging issues and solutions under the theme ‘Cambodia’s Covid-19 Recovery Pathway’. The team also led local engagement activities to present project findings. CDRI and partners are planning to organise a regional policy forum later this year.
As part of ‘The impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on livelihoods in Africa’ project, the African Economic Research Consortium (AERC) is setting up a new knowledge centre, online courses, and a new learning system in order to better communicate with their key audiences. AERC’s December biannual plenary brought into sharp focus the opportunities and challenges that the Covid-19 pandemic has brought in the areas of growth, poverty, redistribution, and social inclusion in Africa. AERC’s biannual plenary is a highly regarded forum which has been attracting world class development economists and experts on African economies for over three decades.
Partnership for Economic Policy is currently hosting a series of online roundtable discussions on ‘Lessons for more effective and inclusive policy responses to the Covid-19 crisis in the Global South’. This is part of the ‘Simulations and field experiments of policy responses and interventions to promote inclusive adaptation to and recovery from the Covid-19 crisis’ project. In this series, local researchers and national government officers share and discuss findings from their projects on the effectiveness of early or potential public policy responses to mitigate the impacts of the Covid-19 crisis, particularly for the most vulnerable populations in the Global South.
Supporting essential economic activity
The Sustainable Development Policy Institute’s (SPDI) twenty-fourth Sustainable Development Conference (SDC), with the theme ‘Beyond the Pandemic: Leaving No One Behind’, held in early December, included attendees and speakers from government, ministers, and the World Food Programme (WFP). SDPI’s Executive Director has been appointed as the convenor of the National Committee on Agricultural Transformation Plan which will work closely with the Prime Minister of Pakistan. As a result of SDPI’s high-level engagement, there is now a strong demand for their research to inform Pakistan’s response to the pandemic. SDPI lead the ‘Supporting small and medium enterprises, food security, and evolving social protection mechanisms to deal with Covid-19 in Pakistan’ project.
Women in Informal Employment: Globalizing and Organizing Limited (WIEGO) organised a webinar in December entitled ‘There is no recovery without informal workers: The view from 2021’ to share new global data from its ‘Informal Workers and COVID-19: Evidence-Based Responses to the Crisis at the Base of the Economic Pyramid’ project.
Centro Latino americano para el Desarrollo Rural (RIMISP), which leads the ‘Sowing Development: Small Scale Agriculture and Food Security Resilient to Covid-19’ project, has been convening face-to-face multi-stakeholder dialogues with researchers, policy actors and practitioners in Colombia and Chile.
As part of the ‘Promoting resilience in Covid-19 in MENA: Building inclusive and effective social protection and safety nets’ project, the Arab Reform Initiative (ARI) is organising stakeholder dialogues and planning to convey findings to stakeholders at regional and national level in the next few months. ARI has also recently launched the ‘Arab Hub for Social Protection from Covid’ website.
Southern Voice held their third Southern Voice Research Conference which profiled multiple CORE projects. They are also organising national policy dialogues.
Global engagement opportunities
CORE has also been leading engagement efforts at the global level. For instance, ODI has been presenting findings from the ‘Shaping the Macro-Economy in Response to Covid -19: A Responsible Economic Stimulus, a Stable Financial Sector, and a Revival in Exports’ project in global platforms including the Southern Voice supported engagement with UN-WIDER.
Last year, the CORE Knowledge Translation team co-organised an independent Food Systems dialogue in the lead up to the UN Food Systems Summit. The sixty-sixth session of the Commission on the Status of Women in March is another key opportunity for the CORE cohort to engage a wide range of stakeholders on gender issues.
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