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Applied Collaborations

Current applied collaborations 

Centre for Global Equality

Centre for Global Equality

The Centre for Global Equality is an international development network affiliated with the University of Cambridge. It brings together NGOs, researchers, entrepreneurs, academics, business leaders, students and consultants working to reduce global poverty. The Centre exists to facilitate collaboration between sectors and disciplines, to share best practice, and to promote dialogue and learning. In parallel they build the skills and capacity of over 40 NGOs and member groups. By adding value to UK-based work
with overseas partners, the Centre for Global Equality positively impacts communities across the world.


Cambridge Governance Labs

Cambridge Governance Labs is an interdisciplinary initiative to promote good governance in developing countries, especiallyAfrica. It does so by focusing on decision-making and the factors that enhance or degrade decision-making capability, especially in developing countries. Good governance relies on sound decisions and the right balance of power between society and its leaders. By equipping citizens and leaders alike to make better decisions, CGL seeks to enhance productivity, reduce conflict and empower stakeholders to work more harmoniously
towards common social and development objectives.

There are close links between CGHR and CGL which provide much scope for collaboration and jointly hosting events. CGL Director, Dr John Barker, has been an associate of CGHR since its inception and CGHR's Director, Dr Srinivasan, serves on CGL’s Expert Panel.

Past applied collaborations 

IBM Research | Africa 

IBM Research Africa logo   news image

IBM Research has been developing their study of cognitive computing – systems that learn and interact naturally with people to extend what either man or machine could do on their own. They help human experts make better decisions by penetrating the complexity of "big data." The intersection of IBM's research interests and those of CGHR have been demonstrated by the cooperation between the Centre and the IBM Research Africa Lab in Nairobi.

The Centre's Director Dr Srinivasan was working directly with the lab to investigate further the role of cognitive computing in Africa's development. 




Internews is an international non-profit organization whose mission is to empower local media worldwide to give people the news and information they need, the ability to connect and the means to make their voices heard. The PiMA research team have partnered with this US-based media development organization, with a view to sharing the project’s outputs and thus maximizing their impact.


UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions

Professor Christof Heyns

Since 2011, CGHR has been collaborating with the former UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, Professor Christof Heyns, to produce in-depth research on topics directly associated with his mandate. Information on the role played by Special Rapporteurs within the system of the UN Human Rights Council can be found here


In 2012 a group of student researchers presented their study of the “Right to Life of Journalists” to an expert panel convened in Cambridge. Their research was used to inform the Special Rapporteur’s subsequent thematic report to the Human Rights Council. The report is available to read online here.  The Special Rapporteur has as well initiated a study into levels and contexts of unlawful killing in Africa. Find out more about that here.


YouGov Cambridge Programme


YouGov has always valued strong links with the academic community and in 2011, it established a unique partnership with the Department of Politics and International Studies (POLIS) at Cambridge University, to facilitate greater collaboration between academic experts and opinion-research professionals in the study of public opinion. Under this umbrella, YouGov was advising CGHR on its Africa's Voices (2012-2013) project, which aimed to develop new platforms for opinion-research in Sub-Saharan Africa using radio and mobile phones.




A lack of communication can be a major barrier for grassroots NGOs working in developing countries. FrontlineSMS is the first text messaging system created exclusively with this problem in mind. By leveraging basic tools already available to most NGOs - computers and mobile phones - FrontlineSMS enables instantaneous two-way communication on a large scale. It is easy to implement, simple to operate and the software is free.

The applied collaboration between CGHR and FrontlineSMS was a core component of the Centre’s New Communication Technologies and Citizen-led Governance in Africa project. FrontlineSMS has the capacity to turn a laptop – or desktop – computer and a mobile phone or modem into a group messaging hub. It works anywhere there is a mobile signal, with no need for the Internet: a major advantage for local organisations and grassroots NGOs. The collaborative work between CGHR and FrontlineSMS led to the development and deployment of FrontlineSMS:Radio. CGHR used both forms of software in the Africa’s Voices applied pilot project.