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Research capacity strengthening in South Asia: based on the experience of South Asian Hub for Advocacy, Research and Education on Mental Health (SHARE)

  • M. Sharma (a1) and B. Razzaque (a2)

Abstract

The South Asian Hub for Advocacy, Research and Education (SHARE) was a five-year National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)-funded program that aimed to stimulate the research base for task-shifting mental health interventions to address the mental health treatment gap in low and middle-income countries. During its 5 years (2011–2016) SHARE made notable accomplishments, including providing 20 studentships for short courses and ten fellowships to conduct mentored study, developing a new humanitarian research training course, implementing distance learning courses, creating an online repository of training materials, creation of a network of public health researchers at different career stages in South Asia, strengthening of partnerships amongst institutions of SHARE network and supporting its member's to produce peer reviewed publications. Furthermore, additional research capacity building and research grants leveraged on SHARE network were secured. The salient lessons learned in the 5-year program were that research capacity-building opportunities need to be tailored to the local context, as SHARE sought to develop and support courses that can build the capacities in specific areas identified as weak in the South Asian region. Mentoring was recognized as a critical component for which innovative and effective models of mentoring in the region need to be developed. Diverse platforms and mediums ought to be utilized to deliver the research training programs. Finally, research capacity-building program requires collaborative efforts of multiple stakeholders working locally, nationally and globally to attain the maximum impact in a region.

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Copyright

This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution licence (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Corresponding author

*Address for correspondence: M. Sharma, Center for Chronic Conditions and Injuries, Public Health Foundation of India, New Delhi, India. (Email: mona.sharma@phfi.org)

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Keywords

Research capacity strengthening in South Asia: based on the experience of South Asian Hub for Advocacy, Research and Education on Mental Health (SHARE)

  • M. Sharma (a1) and B. Razzaque (a2)

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