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New projects address socio-economic impacts of COVID-19 on vulnerable populations

September 21, 2020
Which programs are most effective for protecting informal workers in Latin America from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic? Which stimulus packages will help African countries build back more inclusive and greener economies? Which interventions will ensure the safety of Rohingya refugees and nearby communities in Bangladesh during and after the pandemic?  
Joba Akter works as a fruit vendor in Dhaka, Bangladesh. She is wearing a mask to avoid the spread of COVID-19.
UN Women/Fahad Abdullah Kaizer

These are just a few of the many research questions addressed in the COVID-19 Responses for Equity initiative. Its 21 new projects — with research happening across 42 countries — seek to understand the socio-economic impacts of the pandemic, improve existing responses, and generate better policy options for recovery.

This three-year, CA$25-million rapid support initiative focuses on the most affected populations and regions while seeking to advance gender equality and address the ways the COVID-19 pandemic has deepened existing vulnerabilities. 

The research will centre on economic policies to mitigate impact and enhance recovery; efforts to protect informal business, small producers, and women workers; and democratic approaches to promote accountability, inclusion, and civic engagement.  

Through this initiative, IDRC will also offer opportunities to build capacity where needed, promote peer learning among research partners, and provide support for knowledge translation. This support will strengthen efforts to reach relevant actors in governments and other sectors who can put the necessary measures in place to protect those who are suffering most and to ensure equity and sustainability during the recovery period.

The world’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic must ensure gender equality, rights and inclusion, and environmental sustainability and resilience. Evidence-based responses can support these efforts and contribute to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. 


Visit the initiative’s website.