Partnerships for Enhanced Engagement in Research (PEER)

Federal Science Agencies, such as the National Science Foundation (NSF) and National Institutes of Health (NIH), make major investments to support high caliber scientists primarily in the U.S. who are conducting research in developing countries, including all USAID-presence countries.  Yet, these same agencies are limited in their ability to directly fund developing country partners of these U.S. scientists.  Therefore, USAID partners with these agencies to fill this gap and support collaborative research projects that help USAID achieve their development objectives.

By empowering scientists and engineers in developing countries through this program, USAID is leveling the playing field on which global research occurs.


The initial program – Partnerships for Enhanced Engagement in Research (PEER) – is a joint program between USAID and NSF.  The PEER Program supports developing country scientists conducting research in collaboration with NSF-funded scientists on topics related to local development issues like agriculture, water, biodiversity conservation, and disaster mitigation.

PEER proposals have been submitted by developing country scientists from more than 79 countries and competitively reviewed based on the merits of the science and development impact.  PEER awards, which are made directly to the developing country institutions, will build capacity and engage developing country researchers to address key global development challenges, while leveraging U.S. scientific expertise and building long-term scientific relationships.

This program helps USAID to address the local and global development challenges it faces; build capacity in the countries it serves since they now have the money and connections to build their own research programs; and strengthen the global research network and make it more inclusive for developing country scientists who bring innovative approaches to solve the world’s toughest development problems.

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PEER Health will directly fund developing country scientists who collaborate with NIH-funded researchers on projects that support improved implementation of health interventions in areas of particular interest to USAID and NIH.

The purpose of PEER-Health is to:

  • Leverage  medical research funded by NIH through collaborative research partnerships with developing country scientists to advance development goals;
  • Enhance sustainable research capacity within developing countries; and
  • Strengthen the linkages between USAID Missions and NIH field researchers and trainees to enhance the impact of research on Mission and country specific health goals.

Stay tuned for more information. 

Last updated: August 17, 2012

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