Background of Research:
The project aims to create an information data-loop to inform and influence public policies and state responses on Covid-19 related relief, recovery and resilience measures. Based on a representative household panel of marginalised groups in Bangladesh, the project tracks their understanding of and demands for healthcare policies and responses and put emphasis on discerning the heterogeneity of the marginalised communities and determine their interests by deploying empirical data attempting to inform policy making decision from a humane centric approach. This project builds on the ongoing research initiative of the Centre for Peace and Justice, Brac University on Covid-19 pandemic. The aim of the study will be more exploratory rather than predictive. It will serve as the amplifier of the voice of the marginalised population for responsive and inclusive policy formulation.
Using five determining characteristics of marginalisation – a) economic opportunities, b) gender, c) living in remote areas with low access to health services, d) ethnic and religious background, and e) disability; this project focuses on five marginalised groups, namely – a) economically disenfranchised, b) women, c) slum dwellers, d) indigenous communities and e) people with disabilities (PWD).
The study will follow a mixed method approach to collect data related to the research
objectives. A household sample survey of representative panels of the marginalised communities (three surveys in three quarters in year 2021) will be conducted. The qualitative data will be collected through key informant interviews (KIIs) and focus group discussions (FGDs) in a staggered manner. Under the panel survey at household level, response will be solicited over a digital platform using customised and user-friendly mobile phone apps. An analytical engine at the backend will analyse data in real time across specified granularities. A public facing frontend (web page) will report the findings and trends through data analytics and info-graphics. Descriptive as well as analytical statistics will be used in analysing quantitative data while qualitative data will help qualifying and clarifying significant trends and changes.
Outputs and Dissemination:
The project plans to analyse and communicate findings using an innovative technique – “Policy Clinic”. The proposed Policy Clinics are envisaged to be the forum to identify appropriate policy response to fill gaps in policy formulation and thereby support inclusive policy response. The Policy Clinics will have participation from policy makers, academics, professionals as well as members from networks and coalitions representing marginalised communities. CPJ will convene and facilitate the policy clinics to ensure consensus emerge on prioritising policy responses. Outcomes from the policy clinics will be widely circulated through traditional medium and social media.
Outcomes: The project expects to achieve two specific outcomes –
Outcome-1: By establishing effective and inclusive feedback loops, this ensures that public policies and responses to Covid-19 are adequately informed by the needs, aspirations and perceptions of communities at the margins of power and influence.
Outcome-2: By creating credible and open channels of communication between the state and citizens, a virtuous trust building cycle is set in place and accountability, transparency, inclusivity and responsiveness can be at the heart of relief and recovery from this pandemic.
Partners: Institute of Development Studies (IDS), Sussex University, UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO)
Timeline: February 2021 to February 2022
Funding Details: The project is a collaboration with the Institute of Development Studies (IDS), Sussex University, UK under COVID COLLECTIVE platform funded by Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO).
Muhammad Badiuzzaman, Lead Researcher and Research Coordinator, CPJ, Brac University
Nahida Akter, Qualitative Researcher and Research Associate, CPJ, Brac University