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Equitable partnerships


Progress towards the global goals will be faster and more effective if we work together.

The IGSD team is committed to the establishment of equitable, meaningful and enduring partnerships and we value cultural, gender and epistemic diversity. In our pursuit of such partnerships, we recognise that that equitable can mean different things to different people. Moreover, we understand that we do not always get it right, so we invest time in exploring ideas and having conversations about how we can work together to develop research that is structured in an equitable way. This page includes some links to documents that we thought others involved in research might find useful. Please do share with us anything you feel we should add

UKRI funded a project by the Rethinking Research Collaborative that produced a report and recommendations to UKRI entitled Promoting Fair and Equitable Research Partnerships to Respond to Global Challenges. It contains a set of 8 principles and 4 recommendations to UKRI for implementing the principles. It has a useful section on what works in research partnerships and what doesn't.

The UK Collaborative on Development Science (UKCDS) also produced a report in 2017 entitled Building Partnerships of Equals: The role of funders in equitable and effective international development collaborations. While the majority of the report examines the role of funders in shaping equitable partnerships, the third chapter on challenges and learning provides an interesting summary of the barriers to participation of researchers from the South. In particular, section 5 of this chapter highlights potential challenges that go beyond the PI.

The NIHR Equitable Partnerships Guide is a great resource bank full of useful links to documents on equitable partnerships. Information is split in to four sections on Building equitable research partnerships, Evaluating and improving established research partnerships, Resources for capacity strengthening and Further reading and background information on equitable partnerships.While some documents are general in nature, there are many that specifically address the challenges related to equitable partnerships in a health context.

This policy and practice briefing from Ecosystem Services for Poverty Alleviation (ESPA) provides a clear and concise appraisal of the challenges it has encountered and observed between institutions in the global North and global South. It provides a useful account of lessons it has learned along with five key messages. Challenges are all ones that we recognise, including research design, money, trust and differences in academic incentives and rewards.

The Global code of conduct for research in resource-poor setting provides some important guidance regarding the things that researchers based in high-income countries should consider when forming research partnerships and designing research. It is all good stuff, but we particularly like the first section on fairness.

This resource is co-written by Sustainable Futures in Africa researchers from Uganda, Botswana, Italy, Malawi, Canada, Bangladesh, and Scotland. Drawing on experiences of international, interdisciplinary and cross sector projects it explores the elements of partnership that determine the nature of the practice and outcomes of research. This thought provoking guide asks some important questions about equitable partnerships. From approaches to money, time and language, this guide is an essential read for anyone developing research projects with partners in the global South.

Identifier: DOI 10.17605/OSF.IO/DJTN4

Picture credit: Gordon Johnson, Pixabay