Researchers from the XCEPT Local Research Network highlight their experiences working on policy-focused research for the XCEPT programme.

In Asia, the Middle East and Africa, conflict and instability endure in contested border regions where local tensions connect with regional and global dynamics. The Asia Foundation, the Malcolm H. Kerr Carnegie Middle East Center, the Rift Valley Institute and their local research partners established the X-Border Local Research Network in 2018 to develop a better global understanding of political, economic and social dynamics in conflict-affected borderlands. The X-Border Local Research Network produces research to inform more effective policymaking and programming. It is a component of FCDO’s Cross-border Conflict Evidence, Policy and Trends (XCEPT) research programme.

The X-Border Local Research Network emphasises partnering with local researchers and research institutions based in the regions that they study. It builds, maintains and expands research networks in remote and difficult-to-reach conflict-affected regions such as the Afghanistan-Pakistan borderlands, Iraq, Syria and Yemen, Sudan and South Sudan. Finally, it supports improvements in local research methods and capacity.