Strengthening Capacity of Civil Society for Promoting Research Evidence into Policy Development in Georgia

Strengthening Capacity of Civil Society for Promoting Research Evidence into Policy Development in Georgia
The idea of initiating the project was prompted by aggressive health and insurance market oriented reforms focusing on hospital sector privatization and financing of health care services through the private insurance companies. Implicit risks posing this campaign and fast pace of implementation needed to be mitigated through effective and evidence informed policies and regulations.

The project aims to achieve development of policies that are: a) evidence informed; b) tailored to Georgia’s social, economic and cultural context, and c) responsive to public interest. Curatio International Foundation intends to contribute to achieving this goal by allying two distinct networks of NGOs and strengthening their capacity in delivering evidence into policy process. The alliance gathers experts in their own operations field, been active as watchdogs for health sector reforms on one hand and focusing on mental health issues on another hand.

Curatio International Foundation embarked on a strategy of using evidence-informed advocacy as an essential ingredient in the policy development process. The Evidence to Policy is viewed through institutional lens rather than individual, therefore it focuses on interventions on institutions and on strengthening the links between institutions within and outside of the NGO networks through trainings of NGO staff and establishing Information Exchange Platforms. Training topics were informed from the assessment of capacity needs undertaken prior to project launch.

As a result of this project it is expected that:

* The capacity of NGOs involved in the network will be increased in accessing, acquiring and communicating available evidence to policy makers;
* NGOs will develop better capacity to identify policy relevant research evidence and use the means of communication to effectively influence the policymakers;
* NGO and stakeholder understanding about how they could engage with each other will improve “bonding” and “bridging” ties that link researchers, policy makers and NGOs involved in evidence informed policy making.

NGO networks involved in alliance are:
1. Network of NGOs already active as watchdogs and advocacy groups for health sector reforms:
a. Georgian Young Lawyer’s Association (GYLA)
b. Transparency International Georgia
c. Open Society Georgia Foundation (Soros Foundation national chapter)
d. Association of Young Economists of Georgia (AYEG)
e. Economic Policy Research Centre

2. Network of NGOs focusing on mental health issues:
a. Georgian Association for Mental Health (GAMH)
b. Mental Health Coalition
c. Association of People in Need of Special Care (APNSC)
d. The Georgian Association for Psychosocial Aid “Ndoba”

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