Background and Objectives

Background to the meeting

The volume of research conducted in low and middle-income countries is rapidly growing. This development is welcome, but brings with it a number of new challenges for research institutions and government departments responsible for research in those countries. In particular, experience suggests that in some cases northern institutions proposing to either collaborate with or commission research from southern institutions, insist on a number of preconditions that disadvantage southern institutions. As a result, the necessity for LMIC institutions to have access to the legal resources and capacities to negotiate fair partnerships with their funding partners has become more important than ever. This meeting, which takes place from 22 to 26 October 2012 at the Rockefeller Foundation’s Bellagio Centre – aims to address this challenge.

Objectives of the meeting

COHRED, through its Fair Research Contracting initiative, is developing model contracts and contracting guidelines to support LMIC institutions and governments engaging in research for health with northern partners. These guidance documents will address the following issues: data and sample ownership, post-study benefit sharing, finance & administrative (indirect) costs, institutional frameworks and policies, intellectual property rights, capacity building/transfer and relevant legislation for governing contracts. The project will culminate in an interactive space on COHRED’s Health Research Web (HRWeb) where guidance on process and content is available to countries and institutions negotiating research contracts.

The Bellagio meeting is aimed at developing model contracts and contracting guidelines to support LMIC institutions and governments.

Many different stakeholder groups will benefit from more equitable research contracts.

  • Institutions will share a greater proportion of the benefits that result from their work, enabling them to build a more effective research base;

  • Southern institutions have the potential to become the primary recipients in securing research grants. The issue is then how to empower and capacitate them as the main contractor to negotiate fair sub-contracts with their northern partners, and to manage these contracts effectively;

  • Countries will benefit from research that strengthens rather than weakens national systems;

  • Research sponsors will benefit from the stronger research capacity available in countries in which they operate; and

Society in general will benefit from more rapid access to new evidence based services and interventions that have the potential to avert morbidity and mortality.

Agenda: Click here to download the agenda to the meeting.