ICTD’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic

Date:
News

Due to the unprecedented challenges and risks posed by the global spread of COVID-19, the ICTD – like other international research organisations – has been working to establish new ways of working for our own staff, and to review the implications of the crisis for the projects that we fund.

ICTD staff

All our core staff are now working from home, and all in-person meetings and work-related travel are suspended. We are fortunate that our work is relatively amenable to moving online. With the exceptions of restrictions on travel and in-person meetings, activities are proceeding largely as normal, and you can anticipate the same support and engagement as is usually the case.  We are firmly committed to providing additional support to partners who may need it in light of the crisis and are exploring new strategies for sustaining engagement with the broader network despite expanding restrictions on travel and in-person meetings.

ICTD events

We have postponed our in-person events until further notice. However, we are exploring ways to engage with the tax community virtually through online conferencing platforms. Follow us on Twitter or subscribe to our mailing list to be notified of any events we may host in the future.

ICTD research projects

We remain open for research proposals. That said, our current process for funding research projects has been adapted to reflect the risks posed by the Covid-19 pandemic. We will be guided by three broad principles in considering proposals:

  1. Presumption of caution: We will continue to consider all funding proposals – including those requiring face-to-face data gathering. However, we will generally presume that research activities requiring face-to-face data gathering, such as in-person surveys or focus groups, cannot presently be carried out, and that the timing of their resumption remains uncertain. As such, our ability to fund certain projects may depend on the evolution of the crisis in the months ahead. Where necessary we encourage partners to consider alternative research strategies that do not require face-to face data gathering. We will also consider making project preparation grants.
  2. Adherence to local public health guidelines: We will consider requests for exceptions, in order to allow for some face-to-face data-gathering, where any such exceptions are (a) essential to the research activity, (b) clearly consistent with public health guidelines, (c) and involve clearly defined strategies for mitigating health risks and risks of disruption.
  3. Explicit contingency planning: Before full review all research projects will be asked to provide a clear statement of potential risks – to health, of disruption, or to the validity of findings – resulting from Covid-19, the implications of those risks for the project, and potential responses to those risks. So, for example, a project requiring face-to-face data gathering, would need to explain any risks of disruption, the implications of any such disruption for the feasibility of the research, and possible adjustments that could be implemented. We are committed to working with partners – and particularly our partners in Africa and South Asia – collaboratively in seeking to manage these uncertainties.

New and revised proposals should ideally refer explicitly, even if briefly, to Covid-19 risks, and possible implications, in order to facilitate project review. We will regularly review this policy. More information on submitting a proposal here.

If you have any questions, please email info@ictd.ac.