USAID/Eastern and Southern Caribbean (ESC) and OCE Impact Evaluation Scoping for a Gang Violence Prevention Activity

Call for Capacity Statement for USAID/Eastern and Southern Caribbean (ESC) and OCE Impact Evaluation Scoping for a Gang Violence Prevention Activity in Trinidad and Tobago, Saint Lucia, and Saint Kitts and Nevis

Call for Capacity Statement

The United States Agency for International Development Office of the Chief Economist (USAID/OCE), USAID/Eastern and Southern Caribbean Regional Office (USAID/ESC), and Long-term Assistance and SErvices for Research, Partners for University-Led Solutions Engine (LASER PULSE) at the Purdue Applied Research Institute, Global Development Innovation Division (PARI-GDI) seek Capacity Statements (CSs) from teams of researchers to support the design of a new USAID gang violence prevention activity in the Eastern and Southern Caribbean and to assess the feasibility of and provide options for a randomized impact evaluation and/or other rigorous methods of piloting and testing activity interventions.

Background:

Gangs are entrenched in many countries in the Eastern and Southern Caribbean (ESC), and recent studies show that gang dynamics are shifting: gangs are splintering, increasing in geographic spread, and growing in number and membership. For example, in Trinidad and Tobago (T&T), there are an estimated 1,750 gang members, with many more gang-adjacent youth. Saint Lucia (SL) has an estimated 12 -15 gangs with up to 300 gang members, and Saint Kitts and Nevis (SKN) has an estimated 19 gangs with up to 500 gang members. Gang behavior varies across countries, ranging from drug peddling and trafficking, extortion, up to and including homicides. Homicide rates are increasing and are among the highest in the region; recent studies estimate that gangs are responsible for around 40 percent of these, with significant variation across countries.

USAID/ESC and various local and international stakeholders have implemented a number of interventions designed to address both crime and violence in general. With the exception of Trinidad and Tobago (T&T), there have not been any interventions aimed at addressing gang violence in ESC countries. The interventions implemented in T&T were not able to demonstrate a sustained reduction in gang violence.

USAID/ESC is undertaking the design of a new evidence-based activity that aims to address youth involved in gang violence or at risk of joining gangs in Trinidad and Tobago, Saint Lucia, and Saint Kitts and Nevis. A customized package of interventions will be implemented in each country based on a number of factors such as country needs, youth-gang/crime dynamics, programming gaps, in-country capacity, existing or complementary interventions, opportunities to leverage existing resources, and country commitment. This is a new area of focus for USAID/ESC, which intends to incorporate results from rigorous evidence on the topic, be responsive to the evolving context on the ground, and innovative with respect to piloting and testing promising interventions using a Collaboration, Learning and Adaptation (CLA) approach. As such, USAID/ESC seeks to work with researchers to further refine the problem definition, identify key programmatic outcomes, propose and adapt promising or novel interventions tailored to each country’s context, and propose rigorous pilot testing and impact evaluation approaches.

Summary

What?
USAID/Eastern and Southern Caribbean and OCE Activity Design and Evaluation Scoping for a Gang Violence Prevention Activity

Why?
To support the design of a new USAID gang violence prevention activity in the Eastern and Southern Caribbean and to assess the feasibility of and provide options for a randomized impact evaluation and/or other rigorous methods of piloting and testing activity interventions.

Where?
In Trinidad and Tobago, Saint Lucia, and Saint Kitts and Nevis in Eastern and Southern Caribbean

Who?
Team of researchers with track records of publishing research in peer-reviewed academic journals.

When?
Call for Capacity Statement release: May 15, 2024.
Application deadline: June 7, 2024 at 5:00 pm EDT.

Timeline & Information

  • Release of Call for Capacity Statement: May 15, 2024
  • Questions and clarifications by: May 24, 2024 at 5pm EDT
  • Application deadline: June 7, 2024 at 5pm EDT.
  • Announcement of selected team: Tentatively June 28, 2024.
  • Estimated funding and timeline:
    • Approximately 65 person days over 2.5 months (July 15 – Sept 30), with an estimated budget up to $50,000.
    • The estimated Funding and Timeline for the Impact Evaluation Phase will be determined after the close of the Design and Scoping Phase.

Successful Application Characteristics

  • Experience conducting research that requires primary data collection, with a preference for experience in countries in the Eastern and Southern Caribbean or the broader Caribbean region.
  • Experience conducting randomized controlled trials (RCTs) (also known as “randomized evaluations”)
  • Relevant subject-matter expertise
  • Publications in peer-reviewed academic journals
  • Meaningful engagement of researcher(s) with primary institutional affiliation(s) in an LMIC and gender diversity
  • Cost will be considered among technically similar proposals