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Research Vision

IDEAS strategy has evolved from the key opportunities that democratic transition has opened up in Pakistan. In this new context what is required is a new policy and research center that engages with the plurality of players who now have influence under greater democracy, and that addresses the broader range of issues confronting these actors under devolution. IDEAS seeks to capitalize on the new opportunity offered by changing political environment by taking advantage of the greater plurality in the political sphere and by the salience given to provincial and local governments on key policy issues. An important feature of the vision is the commitment to evidence-based research that uses rigorous mixed methods approaches as tools for analysis and to evaluate the impact of interventions and reforms. The research vision places great emphasis on understanding the incentives of politicians and other public policy actors and their accountability to different interests. This is because of the realization that the failure to undertake effective reforms is not a result of poor technocratic solutions but on account of political economy and accountability failures. IDEAS’ explicit vision on establishing a vibrant and tolerant democracy in Pakistan drives its selection of issues for research and advocacy. The four research clusters at IDEAS and the projects under each cluster have been selected on this basis.