Strengthening think tank networks
The Think Tank Initiative’s (TTI) Phase 2 capacity development strategy focuses on strengthening policy research institutions to ensure long-term organizational sustainability. TTI sees the formation of public policy networks as a viable way for think tanks to collectively contribute research to the national, regional, and global development agenda, while strengthening the position of network members as contributors and influencers of public policy. Over the past three years, several groups of TTI-funded institutions have come together to collaborate on common issues and challenges.
Each of these groups recognized the value of partnering as a way to leverage financial and other resources, to shape the policy environment within which they function, and to disseminate their work. Several new collaborative networks have emerged as a result. The degree of formality and type of institutional membership of these networks has varied, as have the drivers behind their creation. What is common between them is the opportunities they offer for TTI to provide support to strengthen these groups’ research and advocacy capacities as an additional contribution to the long-term sustainability of TTI partners.
To date, TTI has provided some one-off support to the Latin American Research Initiative for Public Policies (ILAIPP), Southern Voice, and the West Africa Think Tank Network. However, these networks require further support to ensure that they have the financial stability to become self-sufficient and sustainable. This project, coordinated by Ecuador-based Grupo Faro, will help sustain the governance and managerial functions of these networks. This will enable the networks to develop, build, and deepen research expertise to support their credibility as centres of excellence on key research topics. It will also help them strengthen their outreach and advocacy efforts to leverage TTI investment and attract other sources of funding.
The Think Tank Initiative (TTI) is a multi-funder program dedicated to strengthening independent policy research institutions, or think tanks, in developing countries. The program aims to enhance their ability to provide sound research that informs and influences policy. This second TTI phase (2014-2019) will fund 43 institutions, helping them consolidate their role as credible development actors in their countries, and in some cases, regionally and internationally.