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Research Capacity Building for International Social Science Research

a PSC Small Fund Research Project

Investigator:   Prem B. Bhandari

This is a proposal to seek funding to support international social science research capacity building program. Specifically, the goal is to strengthen social science research capacity of the Institute for Social and Environmental Research-Nepal (ISER-N), PSCs long term collaborating institution in Nepal, through training its research staff on survey research methods.
Since the inception of the institute, PSC and ISER-N are jointly running the Population and Ecology Research Laboratory (PERL) to carry out research, education, and institutional capacity building in Nepal. Thus, all PSC’s programs of research and training conducted through the PERL heavily rely on research infrastructures at ISER-N. Recently, the scope and volume of PSCs programs on research, education and institutional capacity building has been substantially increased in Nepal. While PSC researchers have been successful in obtaining grants for large scale social and environmental research, a growing number of researchers are interested in and have submitted research proposals for possible grants. In addition, ISER-N has been a training venue for providing developing country field research experience to PSC researchers and students. ISER-N’s research staff in Nepal has been instrumental in providing such trainings. Therefore, there is a need to develop and strengthen field research capacity at ISER-N through regular trainings.
ISER-N’s field research supervisors--who are actively involved in supervising field research activities but have never participated the summer training—will be brought to Ann Arbor in the summer of 2010. This staff will take basic research methods training including data collection methods offered by the Summer Institute. The staff will also work with PSC researchers and staff on data management and will get opportunity to get exposed to the state-of-the-art survey facilities at SRC. Upon the completion of the training, they will return to ISER-N, get involved in the field research activities, and will provide training to the other research staff in Nepal. Dr. Prem Bhandari, Assistant Research Scientist, will co-ordinate this program. The proposed research capacity building program will ultimately help improve the quality of PSC’s program research in Nepal as well as strengthen and reinforce ties between the Population Studies Center and its collaborating institution in Nepal.

Funding Period: 02/01/2010 to 06/30/2011

Country of Focus: Nepal

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