The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in the increased vulnerability of various groups across MENA countries, further shining light on the necessity of social protection and safety nets as well as the fundamental gaps that these systems exhibit. Given this need to build inclusive and effective social protection and safety nets in the region, ARI will be leading a consortium of four leading national think tanks and three highly influential independent media outlets to conduct work focusing on Tunisia, Egypt, Lebanon, and Jordan. First, we will be undertaking a detailed monitoring of COVID-19 responses by the state, accompanied by an assessment of the scope and impact of the measures and the new forms of exclusion they produce. Second, we will be convening national policy dialogues to promote more inclusive policy-making processes and coordination, as well as organizing round tables to promote regional exchanges with local community groups and policymakers, with specific emphasis on women-led groups. Third, while examining different vulnerabilities, we will conduct knowledge-building research and activities on the impacts of COVID-19 and its impact on vulnerability using a gender mainstreaming lens. Finally, we will disseminate the data, narratives, and results of this work digitally and accessibly in order to ensure that long-lasting and sustainable discussions and analyses regarding social contracts, social justice, and economic reform form a vibrant part of the public sphere.

This project is carried out in partnership with the Forum Tunisien des Droits Economiques et Sociaux, Inkyfada, the Egyptian Initiatie for Personal Rights, Mada Masr, Phenix Center, and Daraj.


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