Supporting a tool for tracking and prioritizing global research funding for pandemic preparedness and response
The COVID-19 pandemic exposed significant problems with traditional funding and research structures in a pandemic response context, leading to slow research activation and duplicate efforts globally. The urgency and scale of research needs have been difficult to respond to and coordinate. Further, the global distribution of COVID-19 research funding and activities has been uneven, with the majority of research projects taking place in high-income countries despite the heavy health and socio-economic burden that the pandemic has placed on low- and middle-income countries (LMICs).
The need to map research funding to global and regional prioritization strategies was identified early in the pandemic. A COVID-19 Research Coordination and Learning Initiative (COVID CIRCLE) was established to align and strengthen research response in, with and for LMICs. A key success of COVID CIRCLE was the COVID-19 Research Project Tracker, a live database of funded COVID-19 research projects that aim to help funders and researchers identify gaps and opportunities and inform future research investments or coordination needs.
Building on that success, this new project seeks to develop and run a tool and associated analytical capability on global funding data for a wide range of epidemic-prone diseases and broader epidemic and pandemic research preparedness activities on an ongoing basis. This will support coordination of research preparedness and research responses during new epidemics, especially across LMICs.