The U.S. Government, through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) has awarded six research grants worth a total of $500,000 U.S. dollars (BTN 37 million in Bhutanese ngultrum approximately, and 37 million in Indian rupees) to foster partnerships in scientific cooperation between Bhutan and the United States on topics including public health, food security, and climate change.
The research grants were awarded through USAID’s Partnerships for Enhanced Engagement in Research (PEER) program. The PEER program invites scientists in low- and middle-income countries to apply for funds to support research and capacity-building activities on topics with strong potential development impacts, in partnership with U.S.-based researchers.
Through this program, implemented by the U.S. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, in coordination with the Bhutan Foundation, six Bhutanese scientists will conduct research on a wide range of development challenges, including:
● reducing deforestation and timber use,
● conserving water basins,
● saving freshwater biodiversity,
● promoting climate-smart agriculture,
● balancing human and primate biodiversity needs, and
● improving quality of life and psychological well-being of people living with HIV/AIDS.
In its more than ten years, the PEER program has enabled more than 400 local researchers in 57 countries to find evidence-based solutions to development challenges in a variety of sectors and regions. Bhutan and the United States have developed their friendly relations by building upon shared values between the two countries. The U.S. and Bhutan will continue to share and advance values of exploration and scientific discovery.
For more information about PEER, please visit: https://www.usaid.gov/research/peer