Consortium for Development Policy Research (CDPR): Summary for proposed activities, November 2015– October 2016
CDPR is a non-profit association of independent researchers/policy advisors based in Pakistan. It aims to consolidate resources for informed debate on key policy issues. Its participating organizations include the Center for Economic Research Pakistan (CERP) and the Institute of Development and Economic Alternatives (IDEAS). The Pakistan office of the IGC is a sponsor of CDPR. Many leading Pakistani economists at LUMS, Lahore School of Economics and other institutions contribute to and participate in our events.
Pakistan’s inclusive growth and development challenges require policy design and implementation to be grounded in empirical evidence. Evidence based policy research has to meet the highest standards to influence the policy debate domestically and in the international arena. This is demanding both in terms of academic research and policy engagement and the resources needed are beyond the capacity of any one of the several established think tanks and research organizations. It points to the need for creating an association of independent researchers/organizations. The Consortium for Development Policy Research (CDPR), with a governance structure for pooling resources, responds to this need.
The activities that will be carried out in the coming year (November 2015– October 2016) will further CDPR’s goals. The following will be undertaken:
- CDPR will be creating and implementing a communications strategy that will not only improve existing methods of dissemination but also add new ways to bring research in the public domain. This strategy includes a weekly newsletter, which circulates research conducted by its partners to a large audience that includes academics, policymakers, donors, private sector and the media. CDPR will also make efforts to engage the news media to bring relevant policy issues to the masses. This will involve building a relationship with identified journalists within Pakistan. Another part of the communications strategy is to use social media as a tool to engage with a wider audience inside and outside Pakistan. For this purpose, CDPR has started its Twitter and Facebook account and plans to continue working on it and expanding its outreach.
- CDPR will continue to produce quality policy notes and briefs focusing on relevant policy themes. In this phase, CDPR plans to formulate policy briefs on issues surrounding trade, energy and urban growth. The policy briefs based on these themes will be disseminated through the CDPR platform, placed on its website and circulated through its weekly newsletter. The CDPR website will also be further enriched with databases and data sources relevant to the new themes CDPR adds to its repertoire. Energy and cities will be particularly focused on.
- The consortium will use existing knowledge from research projects to organize dissemination events in Lahore and Islamabad/Karachi on firm capabilities. The discussion/presentations would focus on formulation and implementation of policies to improve different sectors of industry. This event will be particularly useful for practitioners, policymakers, and other academics interested in pro-poor growth issues. These events will be used to spread learning from already completed or in progress research projects by the partner organization to create an environment where policy debates are based on evidence. They will further promote the CDPR knowledge centres and disseminate existing research.
- CDRP plans to expand its outreach to cities other than Lahore such as Islamabad and Karachi. This would mainly be done through forming partnerships with likeminded organizations to produce quality output under the CDPR umbrella. In the previous phase, CDPR has partnered with Adam Smith International to formulate advocacy material on issues of critical importance to the economy (revenue generation, public expenditure, energy and urban development). Further efforts will be made to incorporate more organizations into the consortium, particularly in Karachi.
- The consortium also plans to partner with more local and international leading economists and researchers. This will be in the form of inducting Fellows and Affiliates who can contribute to CDPR activities and help CDPR build a worldwide network for dissemination. This process has already started.