About ASAP

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Academics Stand Against Poverty (ASAP) is an international professional association focused on helping poverty researchers and teachers enhance their positive impact on severe poverty. It does so by promoting collaboration among poverty-focused academics, effective outreach to policy makers and broader public audiences, and by helping academics turn their expertise into impact through specific intervention projects.

ASAP has chapters in Austria, Brazil, Canada, India, Italy, Germany, Mexico, Oceania, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States, with hundreds of members working and studying in universities, research centers and NGOs worldwide. It has vibrant student chapters at the University of Birmingham, Delhi and Manchester, with more under development.

ASAP’s principal focus is on poor people in the less developed countries, because that is where poverty tends to be most concentrated and severe and where resources for tackling poverty tend to be scarcer. However, ASAP’s ultimate concern is for people, not for countries, and so it includes within its sphere of activity poor people in affluent countries as well.

ASAP’s activities are guided by a nine-member Board of Directors comprised of academics working in seven countries and chaired by Thomas Pogge, Leitner Professor of Philosophy and International Affairs at Yale University. ASAP’s 20-member Advisory Board includes some of the world’s most prominent researchers of poverty and global justice issues.

ASAP has a range of efforts underway in each of the core mission areas of Impact, Outreach, and Collaboration. Here are details, including project contact information. We welcome volunteers and contributors to all efforts. If you have ideas for a new project or initiative, or would like to speak to ASAP about collaboration on an existing effort, please contact Rachel Payne or Luis Cabrera at rachel.r.payne@gmail.com  or a.l.cabrera@bham.ac.uk

Impact Efforts

Global Poverty Consensus Report: This project aims at building an inclusive academic consensus on what ought and can be done to alleviate global poverty, and its findings are a key part of the dialogue around what international priorities in poverty alleviation.  ASAP’s aim is to create consensus around the “must have” features of an international poverty alleviation agenda. So far, ASAP has conducted more than 50 interviews with world-leading experts on their priorities for poverty-alleviation efforts and has identified 1,400+ researchers for input via survey.

For more information and to join the effort, contact Rachel Payne at rachel.r.payne@gmail.com.

Illicit Financial Flows Project: Every year, $1 trillion is spirited out of developing countries through corruption, smuggling, money laundering, and corporate tax evasion. These illicit financial flows greatly aggravate poverty and oppression by weakening the institutions that are intended to sustain the rights and livelihoods of the poor. This project aims to establish a financial transparency and IFF-curtailing goal as part of the post-MDG framework. For more information, contact Rachel Payne at rachel.r.payne@gmail.com.

Moral Psychology and Poverty Alleviation Project: What are the factors that determine whether individuals are motivated to aid the global poor? This project aims to answer this question by bringing together academics who work in areas such as cognitive science, moral philosophy, and political science to discover more effective means of motivating individuals to act on their obligations to alleviate global poverty. For more information, contact Meena Krishnamurthy at meena.krishnamurthy@gmail.com or Matt Lindauer at matthew.lindauer@yale.edu

Know Your Rights India: This pilot research project is focused on improving access to information for very poor persons in India about government entitlements and how to effectively claim them. For information, contact Ashok Acharya at aacharya.du@gmail.com

Outreach Efforts

Impact: Global Poverty: Promoting direct positive impact on aspects of global poverty is at the core of the ASAP mission. Impact: Global Poverty is a new ASAP-sponsored project aimed at sharing information and best practices from academic efforts at influencing poverty policy and civil-society efforts. Impact: Global Poverty is a free online series of articles, interviews, background reports, and how-tos on promoting impact. It is both theoretical, exploring ways to conceptualize positive impact and effectively pursue it, and practical, offering compelling narratives about academics who have achieved positive impact through policy consultations, civil society campaigns, and on-the-ground interventions. For more information, or to nominate an impact-oriented academic for a profile article, please contact Luis Cabrera at a.l.cabrera@bham.ac.uk

Videos: ASAP web site designers are recruiting and compiling videos by academics for use on the site. If you have video of a poverty-related presentation, campaign, documentary, teaching materials, etc., please consider proposing it for the ASAP site. Contact Luis Cabrera at a.l.cabrera@bham.ac.uk 

Collaboration

Conferences: ASAP has staged country-chapter launch conferences involving hundreds of participants at Yale University, the University of Delhi, the University of Birmingham, the University of Oslo, Ryerson University, and Notre Dame’s London Campus. If you have an active network of academics focused on poverty-related issues in your country and would like to propose an ASAP launch, please contact Rachel Payne or Luis Cabrera at rachel.r.payne@gmail.com or a.l.cabrera@bham.ac.uk

ASAP Students: This effort aims to develop a global network of undergraduate-focused ASAP student groups. Current student groups stage poverty workshops and other events, and they are developing a global campaign focused on university supply chain ethics. In Summer 2012, members of the University of Birmingham student group spent a week with their counterparts at the University of Delhi, planning collaborative efforts, meeting with prominent Indian poverty scholars, and working with NGOs focused on slum-dwellers’ rights, gender discrimination and other issues. For information, contact Luis Cabrera at a.l.cabrera@bham.ac.uk

ASAP Internship Program: ASAP is offering students a unique opportunity to intern for a range of academically based projects focused on global poverty. The ASAP internship program is designed for students interested in doing work that has a real impact on global poverty while utilizing and developing their skills as academics. Contact Rachel Payne at rachel.r.payne@gmail.com for more information.