To answer how governments used emergency procurement in the response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Open Contracting Partnership launched the COVID-19 Action Research Program, supporting 12 research teams from Argentina, Colombia, Ecuador, Georgia, Guatemala, Kenya, Lithuania, Nepal, Nigeria, Paraguay, Philippines, and Uruguay to analyze and understand how these countries have implemented emergency procurement in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The objective of the research was to generate recommendations to improve efficiency, effectiveness, fairness, integrity, and equity of public contracting.
From May to August, 2020, the researchers collected data on emergency procurement, reviewed legal provisions, interviewed stakeholders, compared historical prices for protective equipment, assessed whether procurement practices and systems aligned with best practice, and developed tools to explore public contracts or identify the most suitable suppliers.
In total, researchers analyzed more than 1,355,000 contracts. This report summarizes the scope, findings and recommendations of the different research projects. We provide overall findings and recommendations for six critical areas to improve emergency procurement, and a summary of the insights from each country-level research project.
The Action Research Grants were provided in collaboration with Hivos’ Open Up Contracting program. Additional funding is provided through OCP’s projects with the BHP Foundation, the Chandler Foundation, and DFID.