Call for Proposals: Establishing Research Chairs on Forced Displacement in the Middle East and East Africa

Deadline: 3-Aug-21
The International Development Research Centre (IDRC) is pleased to announce a call for proposals to establish research chairs working on issues of forced displacement in two regions, the Middle East and East Africa.

  • To help address this gap, IDRC is launching this call for proposals to localize and institutionalize research on forced displacement in the Global South by establishing research chairs on forced displacement at universities in the Middle East and East Africa. The aim is to:
  • empower local institutions to define research agendas
  • lead on practical, gender-transformative solutions that promote the social, economic, political, and health rights of forcibly displaced persons and host communities
  • amplify the voices and perspectives of forcibly displaced persons and host communities in local, national, regional, and global arenas.

Focus and Approach

  • Critically important across these intersecting themes are commitments to:
  • supporting robust gender analysis and gender transformative approaches
  • supporting inter-disciplinary and multi-sectoral approaches
  • promoting localized agenda-setting and the amplification of local perspectives, including refugee voices, in local, national, regional, and global fora
  • linking humanitarian and development approaches in contexts of displacement

Note: In identifying the thematic entry point(s) for the research chair, proposals should also present concrete ways to implement such approaches within the host university and throughout the research chair’s work. Proposals should present initial ideas about how research chairs will develop and strengthen a community of practice by linking research to host and forcibly displaced communities, and about how to connect the chair’s work to policy processes at the local, national, and global levels.

More specifically, it is envisaged that the research chairs will:

  • support timely, innovative research in contexts of forced displacement that scales up learning from best practices to local, national, regional, and global levels and provides evidenced-based policy recommendations
  • identify and target from the outset potential research users and ensure that recommendations and outputs are designed to be accessible and relevant to these groups
  • promote policy dialogues and inform public debates that help shape discourses on forced displacement at local, national, regional, and global levels based on local knowledge and practice, and that help define future research agendas
  • use their platforms and partner with others to amplify local voices, including those of forcibly displaced communities, in the design and implementation of sustainable and gender-transformative solutions
  • identify and implement sustainability strategies for the continuation of the research chairs beyond initial funding
  • mentor and supervise early-career scholars and scholars in forced displacement studies
  • engage with an emerging network of research chairs established in the other regions by collaborating and exchanging shared learning agendas

Funding Information
Grants of up to CA$600,000 will be issued per university. The project duration will be an estimated 60 months, including all research activities and final reporting.

The newly established research chairs will:

  • conduct research
  • mentor and supervise early-career scholars
  • work with relevant stakeholders to conduct outreach with communities, refugee-led initiatives, and civil society
  • advocate with policy stakeholders at the local, national, regional, and global levels.

More specifically, research chairs are intended to:

  • commit to excellence in research and teaching on forced displacement, including mentoring and supervising early-career scholars
  • be demand-driven and responsive and reflect specific thematic and sectoral, as well as sub-national, national, and regional priorities and capacities
  • complement IDRC strategic priorities
  • ensure an inter-disciplinary, multi-sectoral and gender transformative approach to studying forced displacement
  • ensure a strong linkage with community research, policy influence, and programming initiatives, including refugee-led responses
  • ensure that the research conducted has a strong connection to policy processes — from the local level to national, regional, and global debates
  • collaborate with research chairs in other regions, including those supported by IDRC, to reinforce the collective impact of localized knowledge production on forced displacement

Eligibility Criteria

  • This Call is targeted to universities in low- and middle-income countries in the Middle East and East Africa with a strong track record in research as well as community and policy outreach.
  • For the purposes of this call, eligible countries in East Africa are Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Sudan, and South Sudan. Eligible countries in the Middle East are Lebanon, Jordan, West Bank and Gaza, Iraq, and Egypt.
  • Applicant organizations are considered to be those that have:
  • legal corporate registration in an eligible country: IDRC enters into agreements with legal entities only
  • demonstrated institutional capacity to host a research chair on forced displacement
  • demonstrated institutional expertise and commitment to advancing knowledge on forced displacement
  • commitment to gender equality, inclusion, and equity
  • Only proposals that meet the eligibility criteria above will be considered.

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