Dr Nisha Arunatilake Calls for Greater Involvement of Researchers in Policy Discussions

4 June 2021

Director of Research at IPS Dr Nisha Arunatilake flagged the need for more meaningful involvement of researchers from the Global South in development policy discussions to improve the effectiveness of research on policy impact at the Annual Conference of the Partnership for Economic Policy (PEP). This year’s theme was ‘Power in proximity: For greater participation of local researchers in development policy debates.’

Dr Arunatilake noted that a recent survey suggests that resident researchers are better placed to influence policies as they know: WHO to target for WHAT policies, HOW to package research depending on the policy context, and WHEN to showcase research findings.

She pointed out that research must be conducted according to national priorities. “When we find an urgent research need, we struggle to find the resources to conduct that research. Most of the low and middle-income countries do not invest in research so local researchers often have to depend on foreign grants. As a result, they may not have space to conduct research that they identify,” she explained.