What Should Think Tanks Do? A Strategic Guide to Policy Impact

What Should Think Tanks Do? A Strategic Guide to Policy Impact

What Should Think Tanks Do? A Strategic Guide to Policy Impact

What Should Think Tanks Do? A Strategic Guide to Policy Impact

Excerpt

The Center for Global Development (CGD), founded by development economist Nancy Birdsall, had decided that it needed to do something about preventable diseases for which vaccines could be created but for which market forces alone would not push the research and production of the vaccines to the finish line. After looking at several options, the staff settled on a pilot program to address pneumococcal diseases—pneumonia, meningitis, and related illnesses—that claim more than a million children’s lives a year, mostly among the world’s poor. Led by a nonresident fellow, Harvard professor Michael Kramer, and Senior Fellow Ruth Levine, CGD launched a working group in 2003 called Making Markets for Vaccines to figure out if it would be possible to get an advanced market commitment—essentially an upfront agreement by governments to buy the vaccines once they were successfully produced—in order to spur private research.

Working closely with international institutions and individuals knowledgeable about public health programs and the pharmaceutical business, the CGD task force was able to develop a plan to spur innovation in vaccine research, built around a specific example. The report laid out the rationale and concept and, including model term sheets that could form the legal basis for a binding . . .

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