The Global Shared Research Agenda: Learning about the ‘how’ as much as the ‘what’

Blog post
As the GSRA moves forward, the process will continue to be refined in response to the diversity of voices shaping the Agenda – as we learn not only about the ‘what’ but also celebrate the ‘how.’

Throughout 2020, a participatory process has been underway to shape the Global Shared Research Agenda (GSRA). This is being done through a global priority setting exercise to identify where major gaps lie and what major questions need to be addressed for the field to make progress towards ending violence against women and girls (VAWG).

This has been a complex process but what has become increasingly clear is that the GSRA is not just about ‘what’ is being created but also ‘how’ it is being created.

Research agendas are often shaped by the ideas and priorities of the same individuals and organisations, often from high income countries (HICs). Buzz words such as ‘participatory’ and ‘inclusive’ are used to describe research processes but these are not always meaningfully practised.

The GSRA process has been created to bring these values to life. It has been intentionally designed to open space and facilitate dialogue so that a diversity of voices are heard and acted upon to shape research priorities as well as the process itself. As a result, the GRSA development process is adaptive and flexible, responding to participant feedback and needs. The focus is on decolonising the research process – challenging the ways we define research and being directed by historically excluded and unheard groups in the research field as to what they think is important.

Read the full blog here.

For more information on this work, contact Elizabeth Dartnall at

Visit the Global Shared Research Agenda on VAWG webpage here.