News Release 

Launching of World Pandemic Research Network (WPRN)

The 1st global, real time directory of research and research resources on the societal and human impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic

Institut d'etudes avancées de Paris


IMAGE: This mobilization, because it is unprecedented, needs new resources to coordinate, new formats to build, reflexivity to learn from our successes and our mistakes in view of the next crises.... view more 

Credit: IEA

At a time when the world is facing a major health challenge, the Natural and Life Sciences are mobilizing to find vaccines and remedies. At the same time, and without further delay, the Social Sciences and Humanities are moving to the forefront to help our societies face the wave of socio-economic crisis that will follow. This mobilization, because it is unprecedented, needs new resources to coordinate, new formats to build, reflexivity to learn from our successes and our mistakes in view of the next crises. The World Pandemic Research Network (WPRN) through its platform will contribute to meeting these needs.

WPRN offers an infrastructure serving research communities based on both crowdsourcing and the mobilization of distributed referent expertise. It documents in real time what is being done in the world. It allows everyone to record their resources (research projects, calls for proposals, surveys, seminars, etc.), but also to know who is doing what and where, and to get in touch with the relevant managers.

WPRN differs from other initiatives by the priority given to the human and social sciences, the robustness of its infrastructure anchored in the cloud and because it mobilizes an international and interdisciplinary network of "referents" who sort the projects, providing a first level scientific edition. Partner institutions may mark projects with the "coat of arms" of their cognitive authority.

WPRN allows the sharing of data, questionnaires, hypotheses in real time - while maintaining the intellectual property (authorship) system of tracking and accountability. It creates the conditions for accelerating "good" research and the emergence of new collaborative research formats.

Initiated by the Paris Institute for Advanced Study, WPRN has already received support from the International Academic Union, which federates some 100 Academies in the humanities and social sciences in more than 60 countries, the European and global networks of Institutes of Advanced Studies NETIAS and UBIAS, the European Alliance for Social Sciences and Humanities (EASSH), and the International Panel for Social Progress (IPSP). Other contacts are underway at the international and French levels.

A Scientific Board of 14 leading personalities in the human and social sciences

    Nadia Al-Bagdadi Professor, Central European University ; Director, Central European University - Institute for Advanced Study; Chair, Network of European Institutes for Advanced Study (Netias)

    Pascale Allotey Director, International Institute for Global Health, United Nations University

    Raouf Boucekkine Professor, Aix Marseille School of Economics ; Director, Mediterranean Institute for Advanced Research

    Olivier Bouin Director, RFIEA Foundation, President, European Alliance for Social Sciences and Humanities, Coordinator, International Panel on Social Progress

    Ama de Graft Aikins British Academy Global Professor, University College London - Institute for Advanced Study

    Marc Fleurbaey Professor, Princeton University

    Uichol Kim Professor, Inha University

    Saadi Lahlou Professor, London School of Economics; Director, Paris Institute for Advanced Study

    Vivian Lin Professor, Hong Kong University

    Michal Linial Professor, Hebrew University of Jerusalem

    Nora Lustig Professor, Tulane University; Senior Fellow, Brookings Institution ; Senior Fellow, Inter-American Dialogue

    Helga Nowotny Professor, ETH Zurich; founder and former President, European Research Council

    Guilherme Ary Plonski Professor, University of São Paulo (USP); Director, Institute of Advanced Studies (IEA-USP); Coordinator, University-Based Institutes for Advanced Study (UBIAS)

    Xiaobo Zhang Professor, Beijing University; Senior Fellow, IFPRI-Washington DC


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