Lessons learnt about setting research priorities in LMICs during health crises: New GloPID-R report highlights best practices for funders

GloPID-R is pleased to announce the publication of a new report about research prioritisation during health crises. “Lessons Learnt from Developing and Applying Research Priorities during the COVID-19 Pandemic” builds on the experience of funders, offering practical recommendations and a solid framework to inform research priority setting during future outbreaks.

Developed by the Research Prioritisation Sub-group of the GloPID-R Working Group focusing on research in low-and-middle income countries (LMICs), the report provides guidance for research prioritisation that will be particularly useful for funders of scientific research in low-resource settings. It supports decision-making about what and how to fund in a context of epidemic and pandemic response and preparedness research.

“The GloPID-R report underscores the importance of strategic priority setting in driving impactful research,” said Titus Divala, Research Lead, Epidemics & Epidemiology, Infectious Disease, Wellcome Trust. “It’s a joy to see funders learning from the pandemic and setting a robust framework for future decisions.”

To produce the report, the working group engaged with researchers and research funders to talk about key lessons learnt from applying research priorities locally, regionally and globally. “The GloPID-R Research in LMICs Working Group and researchers have shared their experiences in setting priorities for research during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Emilia Antonio, GloPID-R Research & Policy Officer. “We are grateful to them for their contribution to the identification of key recommendations for best practices in research prioritisation during disease outbreaks.”

The recommendations are complementary to existing published guidance on best practices for health research prioritisation and will be especially useful for funding research in low-resource settings where it is essential to set research priorities to make optimal use of limited resources.

In addition to practical guidance, this work provides a basis for discussion within the GloPID-R membership to take actions that support research prioritisation among funders. “This report is a game-changer,” added Titus Divala. “It’s a must-read for all stakeholders committed to making a difference in future disease outbreaks.”

The GloPID-R Research in LMICs Working Group, chaired by Charles Wiysonge of the South African Medical Research Council (SAMRC), was formed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. With a special focus on broader preparedness and response in LMICs and to address specific challenges for funders, it established the Research Prioritisation Sub-group chaired by Alice Norton, Head of GloPID-R Research and Policy Team.

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The GloPID-R Secretariat is a project which receives funding from the European Union’s Horizon Europe research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 101094188.