OECD Survey on the STI policy responses to Covid-19

 

Q1B. In what ways, if any, are you coordinating on Covid-19 STI responses at international level?


Updated on Response
Australia 2020-04-02 The Australian Government Department of Health contains the National Incident Room, which is a designated National Focal Point under the International Health Regulations 2005 (IHR) (https://www.who.int/ihr/publications/978...) . The National Incident Room has been sharing information on Australian testing protocols and response measures through the IHR mechanism to assist with the consideration and development of international capacity building for COVID-19 response.

Australia’s Chief Scientist, Dr Alan Finkel, has been taking part in regular teleconferences with international Chief Scientific Advisers to share information and coordinate actions as required.

The Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) participates in regular teleconferences and shares information under existing confidential sharing arrangements with comparable overseas regulators including USFDA, Health Canada, UK MHRA, and WHO.

National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) funds a Centre of Research Excellence dedicated to emergency infectious disease response – The Australian Partnership for Preparedness Research on Infectious Disease Emergencies (APPRISE) which involves many of Australia’s leading infectious disease researchers, epidemiologists, clinicians etc. APPRISE researchers are well integrated into national committees and international research collaborations and networks that are important in a major infectious disease outbreak. See https://www.apprise.org.au/

NHMRC is also a member of the Global Research Collaboration for Infectious Disease Preparedness (GloPID-R), an international network of major research funding organizations which invest in research capacity and capabilities to support the rapid initiation of scientific research in case of an outbreak.
Austria 2020-04-03 The responses are coordinated by the Federal Ministry of Education, Science and Research. The focus of international coordination lies within the European Union and is based on regular video conferences between the European Commission and Member States at Directorate-General level.

As a result of these coordination efforts, an “R&I Action Plan for ‘ERAvsCorona’" is about to be finalised.
Belgium 2020-05-13 The Belgian government is in constant contact with the World Health Organization and European Union for the latest news and recommendations.

At European level, Belgium provides input and feedback on R&I needs via different fora, such as the EU Horizon 2020 SC1 Health, Wellbeing Programme Committee.
Brazil 2020-04-03 The Brazilian Minister of Science, Technology, Innovation and Communications, Marcos Pontes, is representing Brazil in a working group established between high level officials such as Ministers and Chief Scientific Advisers from the following countries: Australia, Brazil, Canada, Germany, India, Japan, New Zealand, South Korea, Singapore, United Kingdom, Spain, Portugal and USA. The objective of this working group is to share research results and information on how science can assist in the decisions and measures that governments are taking to face the coronavirus that causes COVID-19. Minister Pontes is also actively participating at the consulting group on scientific responses to CV19 established by UNESCO.
And of course the Brazilian Delegation, with the assistance of the Brazilian scientific community, has been actively involved in the debate on public policies informed by science in the context of WHO.
Canada 2020-05-08 At the international level, Canada joins other G7 countries in sharing information and providing scientific expertise and leadership to accelerate research efforts. Government agencies (Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC), Health Canada (HC), Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), and the National Research Council (NRC)) are working with the World Health Organization (WHO) and the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) to enhance global coordination, support transparent global research, enable priority setting, and build common research platforms. Canada's Chief Science Advisor, Dr. Mona Nemer, is in regular contact with the chief science advisors of various countries to exchange information and mobilize global research approaches regarding the COVID-19 response. To help advance research and vaccine development for COVID-19, Canada is participating in the international collaboration, coordinated by the World Health Organization and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations.
o Canada, through CIHR and the International Development Research Centre, is a member of the Global Research Collaboration for Infectious Disease Preparedness (GloPID-R), a consortium of funders that facilitates the international rapid response to infectious disease outbreaks such as COVID-19. CIHR's Scientific Director of the Institute of Immunity and Infection is a Vice-Chair of GloPID-R. Canada continues to work with international partners through the GloPID-R and the WHO's R&D Blueprint to leverage global efforts and avoid duplicative activities. CIHR is one of 67 international research funders that are signatories to a statement to rapidly and openly share COVID-19 research data and findings.
o Canada is participating in the WHO's SOLIDARITY trial, a multi-national clinical trial to study possible treatment options for COVID-19. The goal is to rapidly generate robust data with the same study protocol applied to multiple sites in order to obtain sufficient numbers of patients enrolled in the clinical trial to ensure statistically sound results. Over 70 countries have now confirmed participation. Canada has invested nearly $1 million through the CIHR to support the Canadian arm of this trial.
o The CFIA, in partnership with Defence Research and Development Canada (DRDC) and PHAC, established the Biosafety Level 4 Zoonotic Disease Network (BSL4ZNet) which is a network of 15 government organizations from five different countries (Canada, US, UK, Germany and Australia), each with a responsibility over the regulation of human, animal and zoonotic pathogens with pandemic potential. The BSL4ZNet has been conducting COVID-19 emergency meetings since early January with international partners to facilitate the sharing of scientific information and research capacity needs in a secure and trusted platform. Technical points of contact on COVID-19 research from Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the United States and Canada represented by the BSL4ZNet secretariat have been sharing updates on research priorities and progress. The CFIA has also contributed knowledge towards the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) risk assessments of COVID-19 on its zoonotic potential and in identifying priority research needs on host pathogen interactions.
o NRC, PHAC and CFIA regularly engage with the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness and Innovation (CEPI), which is a key international funding mechanism for vaccine development. Canada has also provided $14 million to CEPI, which is leading efforts to have COVID-19 vaccine candidates ready for clinical trials by late spring.
o HC is engaged with other international regulators to monitor any impacts on the global supply of medicines as a member of the International Pharmaceutical Regulators Programme. PHAC and DRDC are members of the Medical Countermeasures Consortium, in partnership with the Department of National Defence, where they engage with the US, UK and Australian governments to promote collaboration in research, development and acquisition.
o In addition, research information is being shared between the 27 regulatory authorities, representing every region in the world, that make up the International Coalition of Medicines Regulatory Authorities.
From https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/s...

On May 4, the Government of Canada announced its commitment to co-chair the Coronavirus Global Response initiative (CGRI) with Saudi Arabia in their current G20 presidency role, and Italy in their future G20 presidency role. Other co-chair partners include the European Union, France, Germany, Spain, Norway, the United Kingdom, and Japan. The CGRI seeks to kick-start an unprecedented global cooperation between scientists and regulators, industry and governments, international organizations, foundations, and health care professionals. It is hoped that together they can raise more than $8 billion (USD) by the end of the pledging period to support the development of rapid coronavirus diagnostics, treatments, and vaccines. The partners will also work with the World Health Organization to coordinate and prioritize efforts to vulnerable countries. The funds collected will be channelled into three principal strands: diagnostics, treatments, and vaccines and may also be used to strengthen health systems.
Costa Rica 2020-05-05 The President of the Republic of Costa Rica, Mr. Carlos Alvarado, presented to Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO), an initiative calling for an immediate effort to improve access to technologies allowing for detection, prevention, control and treatment of the pandemic.

The letter suggested the creation of a database focusing on research and development related to COVID-19 activities, including estimates of costs of clinical trials and subsidies provided by governments and charities.

This should be a free access repository, or at least, with reasonable and affordable licensing of all the existing knowledge that serves to deal with this emergency.

It might include patents granted and, in the process, to be granted, test data submitted to regulatory authorities, expert and technical knowledge, cell culture information, copyrights, and designs for the manufacture of diagnostic tests, devices, as well as drugs or vaccines. As an answer to Costa Rica´s petition, WHO is driving to open the licenses to treat COVID-19.

Also, the Ministry of science, technology, and telecommunications has been part of several international virtual forums, where Costa Rica has reported on its Covid-19 response strategy.

The Minister participated in the global meeting of the ministers of science and technology organized by UNESCO Paris, and in the Latin American forum organized by World Economic Forum last March.

Additionally, the Minister of Science, Technology, and Telecommunications was invited to be part of the Regional Action Group for Latin America of WEF to enable a high-level dialogue among select decision-makers from government, business, civil society, and experts. This group aims to enhance public-private cooperation and coordinate effective responses to address the economic, political, and social impact of the pandemic, avoid a major systemic breakdown and help shape the region’s long-term future.

The Ministry of Science, Technology, and Telecommunications is leading the organization of the Latin American minister forum in cooperation with the CEPAL. The goal of this is to understand and share the actions that Latin American and Caribbean countries are implementing to fight COVID-19 and to identify possibilities of cooperation between countries. The meeting will be on May 7th, this meeting will be in the framework of the Science, Innovations, and Tics Conference of CEPAL where Costa Rica is the current Chair.
Czech Republic 2020-05-18 The Ministry of Health is in close contact with national medical experts and scientists in relevant fields as well as with the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) and World Health Organisation (WHO). The connection with those and many other platforms allows for using the most up-to-date information on the latest developments and related recommendations for dealing with the situation at the Czech national level.

The Czech Republic is a Member State of a number of international research infrastructures and is thus engaged with the efforts that the research community is developing in response to the SARS-CoV-2 / Covid-19 pandemic. Whether these are international R&D organizations established under public international law (https://www.vyzkumne-infrastruktury.cz/e...) or European research infrastructures cosortia (ERIC) established under the EU legal framework (https://www.vyzkumne-infrastruktury.cz/e...), the Czech Republic fights Covid-19 as an active Member of the world leading laboratories (https://www.vyzkumne-infrastruktury.cz/e...).
Denmark 2020-03-28 Denmark is a member of several international forums, where action on Covid-19 is coordinated.
Estonia 2020-03-30 The head of the Government Committee on the emergency situation, the Prime Minister, meets regularly with his counterparts across Europe. Also, other Ministers have regular contact with their counterparts to discuss best practices and possible solutions.
European Union 2020-06-12 The European Commission is coordinating a common European response to the outbreak of COVID-19. Coordination efforts are wide-ranging and take place at the Commission, broader EU, Member State and international levels. The EC is taking resolute action to reinforce our public health sectors and mitigate the socio-economic impact in the European Union. There are active discussions between DG R&I and the R&I DGs of the national administrations to discuss the coordination of R&I actions on COVID19.

The crisis coordination mechanism of the Commission has been activated and the Crisis Coordination Committee meets regularly to synergise the action of all the relevant departments and services of the Commission and of the EU agencies. It is chaired by Commissioner Janez Lenarčič in his role of European Emergency Response Coordinator. The Commission has also established a coordinating response team at political level composed of the commissioners responsible for the most affected policies.

External coordination on the R&I response is ensured mainly through the Global Research Collaboration for Infectious Disease Preparedness (GloPID-R). This is a network of preparedness research funders; the Commission funds its secretariat and is one of the vice chairs. Regular teleconferences are held between chairs and vice chairs of GloPID-R, and also with the World Health Organisation (WHO). The network is keen to create synergies between the different research efforts and avoid duplication.
Furthermore, bilateral talks are being held with those Member States that have indicated that they intend to provide support for Corona virus-related research in order to better understand the destinations being considered for their funding efforts.

Additionally, the Coalition of Epidemic Preparedness Innovation (CEPI), which is an initiative that focuses on vaccine development (the Commission is a financial contributor), is ‘fast forwarding’ a programme of vaccine development against COVID-19, aiming to initiate clinical trials of vaccine candidates and to support the development of hundreds of millions of doses.

The EU is assuming responsibility towards the African continent with insufficient health systems to cope – through the European & Developing Countries Clinical Trials Partnership (EDCTP).

The President of the European Commission has indicated after G20 that the EU stands ready to organise a pledging conference with focus on vaccine development.

The EU has a leading position on open science and is leading the way internationally by connecting initiatives launched by US (OSTP) and UNESCO Plea.
Finland 2020-05-21 The Financial Supervisory Authority (FIN-FSA) is enhancing its monitoring of the financial sector and, in cooperation with European and Finnish authorities, has adopted measures to promote access to funding and the smooth functioning of the markets despite the pandemic. The FIN-FSA confirms, in line with the decisions taken by the European Central Bank, that banks are temporarily exempt from fulfilling certain additional capital and liquidity requirements. This will facilitate credit institutions’ ability to provide funding to non-financial corporations and households and will alleviate the negative economic effects of the pandemic. The Board of the FIN-FSA has started work on an immediate review of the level of capital requirements that are subject to national decision-making. For more, see:
https://www.finanssivalvonta.fi/en/publi...

The European Commission and its partners have launched a pledging effort, the Coronavirus Global Response, to raise EUR 7.5 billion of funding to develop diagnostics, therapeutics and vaccines against the COVID-19 disease and to strengthen healthcare systems. Finland pledged EUR 36 million in the meeting that kick-started the global pledging effort on 4 May 2020.

https://stm.fi/en/artikkeli/-/asset_publ...
France 2020-05-25 Global Research Collaboration for Infectious Disease Preparedness (GloPID-R) is a collaboration of international research funders that strives for a rapid and effective research response in case of a new or re-emerging infectious disease outbreak. France is participating in particular with Professor Yazdan Yazdanpanah, Head, Infectious Disease Department, Bichat Claude Bernard Hospital, Head, INSERM team on decision analysis in infectious diseases, Professor of Medicine, Paris Diderot University, France, also participating in working parties of World Health Organization (WHO).
https://www.glopid-r.org
https://www.who.int

The Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) is an innovative global partnership between public, private, philanthropic, and civil society organisations. We're working together to accelerate the development of vaccines against emerging infectious diseases and enable equitable access to these vaccines for people during outbreaks. France has not been a member of this partnership so far, but some French projects have already been funded in this context.
https://cepi.net
Germany 2020-04-06 Germany is convinced that each nation will only win the race against this pandemic if we join forces in all areas, including research and development. EU Member States are closely working together and joining forces at EU-level. The European Commission (DG RTD) has collected input from all member states on their R&D activities. The European Commission is also organizing discussions with the ministries of the member states. (We assume that further information will be provided by the EU.)

Germany is also closely working together with G7 and G20 member states. The recently adopted G7 Leaders’ statement expresses “our conviction that current challenges related to the COVID-19 pandemic need a strongly coordinated international approach, based on science and evidence, consistent with our democratic values, and utilizing the strengths of private enterprise.” The G7 “will increase coordinated research efforts, including through voluntary support for the global alliance Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness and Innovation. We will support the launch of joint research projects funded by both public and private resources, and the sharing of facilities, towards rapid development, manufacture and distribution of treatments and a vaccine, adhering to the principles of efficacy, safety, and accessibility.”

Germany urges to increase investment in research and development for new vaccines, therapies and diagnostics, to strengthen international cooperation and to follow the recommendations of WHO. Germany, for example, invites G20 countries to also support the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) in their effort to develop a vaccine against SARS-Cov2. The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research decided to support CEPI with an additional 140 million € to support R&D on new vaccines against Covid-19.

Germany exchanges information with other international state or philanthropic sponsors under the WHO umbrella in order to achieve the most targeted and coordinated investment possible for the research funds available worldwide. The co-operation with the “Global research collaboration for infectious disease preparedness network” (GloPID-R) is most relevant (see: https://www.glopid-r.org/our-work/novel-...).
Greece 2020-05-07 Greece participates to the relevant activities and organs of the European Union, the World Health Organization and other international organizations.

The Greek Government has nominated as official representative to the International Organizations for coronavirus issues, Professor Elias Mossialos, (Head of Department of Health Policy and Director of LSE Health at the London School of Economics).
Ireland 2020-03-30 Science Foundation Ireland's (SFI) C19 information portal is tracking relevant international Covid-19 STI responses in order to avoid duplication of effort.

SFI are the national contact point for Ireland on various international working groups, for example, OECD (High risk high gain research of the OECD's Global Science Forum), the Small Advanced Open Economies Initiative, Global Research Council Governing Board, the EU ELIXIR (ESFRI Research Infrastructure for life science data), and are coordinating efforts across these and various other channels.

SFI is in close contact with its international research funding partners such as the National Science Foundation (NSF) in the US to share information.

The Irish Chief Scientific Advisor, Professor Mark Ferguson, shares information with international Chief Scientific Advisors, including that of the UK, Prof. Patrick Vallance.

Prof. Ferguson’s role as chair of the European Innovation Council (EIC) will also support coordination of Covid-19 STI responses; the EIC has launched a call.

Israel 2020-03-30 We are coordinating both on economic and health challenges.
Italy 2020-03-29 The complexity of the current Covid-19 pandemic crisis requires an exceptional effort by the international scientific community. On March 24, DG-RTD of the European Commission convened a meeting of the Research DGs of the 27 Member States for a first brainstorming on
(i) priorities for EU coordinated R&I action on Covid-19 in the short (6 months) and medium term (12 months) and beyond;
(ii) actions to be undertaken by Member States and the European Commission to best maximise funding (e.g. to complement and expand the already launched Covid-19 projects under Horizon2020); and
(iii) how to mobilise State long-term investors.

In this context, Italy proposes to establish a panel of high-level experts which could bridge and co-ordinate the scientific/public health domain with the wider societal domain (something similar to the ‘Mission Boards’), and would allow also scientific efforts and interactions with non-EU countries (e.g. USA, China, etc.) to be better co-ordinated. Furthermore, this ‘board’ could guarantee to have one strategy for COVID-19 (with standardized policies) across countries, also during the crucial post-quarantine phase, in order to ensure that the results obtained during the quarantine/isolation are not nullified.
Japan 2020-03-29 ・Japan participates in the conference call with government science leaders around the world hosted by the United States to gather and provide information on COVID-19.
・The Japan Agency for Medical Research and Development (AMED), together with research support agencies and journal publishers around the world, signed a statement on sharing research data and findings relevant to the COVID-19 outbreak and working to ensure that this does not disadvantage the publication of scientific papers.
・The National Institute of Infectious Diseases(NIID)has succeeded in isolating the novel coronavirus, and provided it to countries around the world for research and development without compensation.
Korea 2020-03-28 - Korea participated in the weekly ministerial conference call meetings (on March 11, 18 and 25) on STI response for COVID-19, organized by the Office of Science and Technology (OSTP) of the U.S in which 11 to 14 countries participated, and discussed international cooperation measures (e.g. use AI to extract relevant information from open data, measures to share COVID-19 data and research outcomes).
- During the bilateral ministerial call meeting between Korea and US held on March 6 Korea shared the benchmarking cases of Korea, such as the use of Drive-Thru and Self-diagnosis App and sought ways to cooperate in various fields such as diagnostic technology and vaccine development
Lithuania 2020-03-30 The Ministry of Education, Science and Sport with the Association of Lithuanian Serials (https://serials.lt/home_lit/) are investigating situations to identify measures needed to ensure open access with text and data mining posibiliy to publications on medical science.

LT (VU GMC), being a member of EMBL, which is one of the main research centres of COVID19 in the EU, has the opportunity to share (and receive) scientific achievements internationally.
Mexico 2020-03-29 The National Council for Science and Technology is working constantly on keeping abreast on the international response to the Covid-19 crisis, including research on the new spread of cures and trials for vaccines. At local level, several efforts are being made with research centres to test those efforts and be prepared for the worst phase of the epidemic.
Netherlands 2020-04-01 On an economic field, the responses are coördinated within the EU: the EU takes action with an economic response.
Norway 2020-04-30 The Research Council of Norway (RCN) is a member of the Global Research Collaboration for Infectious Disease Preparedness (GloPID-R). GloPID-R is an international network of major research funding organizations with the aim to facilitate a rapid and effective response to infectious disease outbreaks. In response to the emergence of COVID-19, Members of the GloPID-R network, including RCN, immediately coordinated to identify the existing, funded research projects in this area and began launching emergency calls for funding. The RCN emergency call on COVID-19 research is published on GloPID-R website and RCN participates in ongoing coordination and information sharing activities through GloPID-R, which also includes WHO.
Peru 2020-05-22 Within the framework of the Organization of American States, we are proposing the creation of the inter american network for modelling and emergency situations. The main goal of this proposed network is to build a mechanism of collaboration where researchers from different disciplines (mathematics, statistics, data science, IT, medicine, biology, geophysics, ecology, etc) can contribute with their technical insights to upgrade the capacities of our countries. This will enable member states to share approaches, instruments, models, systems and experiences to enhance the capacity of member states to model and simulate emergency situations such as pandemics and its potential impacts. In the context of the crisis created by the COVID-19, this initiative would allow us to offer science-based advice to our governments for the sake of improving the decision making process.

At the international level we have coordinated STI responses with multiple governments across the globe. As a result of our government’s consultation with the government of the Republic of Korea, the latter has agreed to share clinical data and medical devices with Peru. The government of China has been providing technical assistance and scientific advice, moreover, chinese private companies and local governments have provided equipment required for coping with the crisis. With the United Kingdom we are working to redirect Newton Fund resources to research endeavors in the field of COVID-19, making efforts to enable peruvian researchers to participate in the UK and US-led initiative called the Pandemic Challenge and supporting the UK Welcome Trust initiative which advocates for data research data and findings sharing. Through the Pan American Health Organization, our government has participated in a virtual roundtable with experts from China where protocols, methods and best practices were shared to tackle the crisis.

Within the framework of UNESCO, we have taken part in the Virtual Ministerial Dialogue on COVID-19, Open Science and International Scientific Collaboration. In the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak, we have vowed to reinforce scientific cooperation and integrate Open Science in our research programmes to prevent and mitigate global crises stepping up information sharing through Open Science.We agreed that UNESCO should use its long-standing normative role promoting international scientific collaboration to boost Open Science in order to reduce the knowledge gap, tackle pandemics, address environmental crises and combat other global threats.

Poland 2020-05-15 See point 3 in Q3 in the range of cooperation between research teams from Austria and Poland (bilateral projects) as well as between Austria and Poland and the Czech Republic or Slovenia (trilateral projects) or cooperation between research teams from Poland and Austria, with the participation of research teams from Germany or Switzerland or Luxembourg,
Portugal 2020-06-05 The Ministry of Science, Technology and Higher Education, organized − in the scope of the Portugal in Europe Research and Innovation Network (PERIN), through the Portuguese Science and Technology Foundation (FCT), the National Agency for Clinical Research and Biomedical Innovation (AICIB), and the National Innovation Agency (ANI) – a Task Force on “Research and innovation for preventing Corona virus in Europe” to give notice of the Portuguese actions and positions for potential enlarged EU joint ventures, which will gain from an enlarged European task force, for articulation of methodologies and, above all, validation/certification of analysis and the communication of results for rhw population at large.
Portugal has joined other countries in asking for open access to publications and data on the COVID-19. A broad set of high level officials responsible for science and technology policies at the global level, including the Portuguese Minister of Science and Technology and Higher Education, issued a declaration pledging for the main scientific societies to make available, promptly and voluntarily, all publications and data as regards the new corona virus, which triggered the COVID-19 pandemics, either in public repositories and in digital format.

International Cooperation SR&TD Projects Portugal - India. In order to support and encourage cooperation between research institutions, universities and R&D centres in India and Portugal, the Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT) and Department of Science and Technology of India (DST) hereby announce that a call is open to fund Scientific Research and Technological Development Joint Projects, developed in close collaboration by Portuguese and Indian research teams in the following priority areas of common interest: Biotechnology; Energy; Environment; Infrastructure Sustainability; Climate Change; Disaster Management and Marine Science and Technology. https://www.fct.pt/apoios/cooptrans/indi...
Russian Federation 2020-04-01 Сoordination of activities and consultations with the World Health Organisation.
Bi-lateral arrangements (providing medical support and advice to Italy, China, the USA and other countries).
South Africa 2020-03-29 The Department of Science and Innovation (DSI) is engaging with international partners at bilateral and multilateral level to establish links and possible partnerships for rapid responses to the pandemic. These engagements include the following:
• The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)
South Africa will participate in the Virtual Ministerial Dialogue on the role of international cooperation in science and Open Science to combat Covid-19 due to take place on 30 March 2020..

• African Union (AU) Commission
South Africa is exploring collaboration with the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) to support the operationalization of the African CDC platforms for clearing and sharing research results and scientific information on the fight against the virus. Virtual discussions on the platform among eminent scientists can also contribute to the identification of knowledge gap on the virus that can lead to research topic that network of African researchers can embark on research issues.

• The Southern African Development Community (SADC)
South Africa is exploring to harness the capability of the New Partnership for Africa's Development (NEPAD) Flagships, namely the Southern African Network for Bioscience (SANBIO) and the Southern African Network for Water Centres of Excellence (SANWATCE) to respond to COVID-19.

• International Science Council (ISC)
South Africa will further support the African Open Science Platform (AOSP) to enable open access and data sharing in support of the fight against COVID-19.

• European Union (EU)
South Africa is planning to join a call for proposals to be issued by the European Developing Countries Clinical Trials Partnership (EDCTP), by adding funding to enable South African participants to develop Southern African regional networks. The call will cover topics such as: understanding the history of the infection; improving surveillance capabilities; developing point-of-care diagnostic tests; supporting clinical management of clinical trials for diagnostics and therapeutics; and validation and adoption of serological tests.

• China
Extensive bilateral research and innovation cooperation is being explored.
Spain 2020-04-01 Research on COVID-19 requires international collaboration at different levels, but concerted actions for STI policies are still under discussion. Spain throughout the Ministry for Science and Innovation is actively participating in the definition of a common European and international response to COVID-19 in the domain of research and innovation, to accelerate results and joint efforts in order to avoid fragmentation and duplication.

Spanish research groups actively involved in the European COVID-19 Horizon 2020 Call include: participation in a multidisciplinary network I-MOVE-COVID-19 (ISCIII); modelling projects such as RiPCoN (IRB) and EXSCALATE4CoV (BSC), diagnostic such as CONVAT (CIN2-CSIC); and treatment projects Solnatide (IRB) and MANCO (CNB-CSIC).

Spain participates in established European fora and platforms including the Health Policy Platform and its Health Security Committee, while shows its commitment to participate in a dedicated space on the Health Policy Platform (HPP) for research teams to share information as soon as it will be set up by the EC.

Spain also has particular interest in setting up a Working Group on Clinical Case Management (including diagnosis; treatment etc.) under the auspices of the Health Security Committee, where Spain asked for the EU wide support in terms of health professionals (https://ec.europa.eu/health/sites/health...).

STI priorities, as supported by MICIN, should focus in an EU and international coordinated action on COVID-19 in the short, medium and long term, though in the short-term urgent action is required. In the short term Spain’ priorities include:
(1) Addition of laboratory testing – strategies, capacities in Member States;
(2) Digital solutions for healthcare advice and prompt sharing of clinical practices; (3) full open access to research results and research data;
(4) Additional public funding for research and innovation in COVID-19 both EU and national sources, in full synergy.
(5) Set up a platform to coordinate R&I activities and national, EU and international level including specific areas such as vaccines, clinical trials, treatments as well as mapping of ongoing research activities.
(6) Promote the use of super computing capacities (i.e. Barcelona Supercomputing Center) and shared services at European and international levels.

In addition, different European groups and initiatives are promoting actions to gather information in specific areas of STI and establish common actions to work jointly. For instance in the context of ESFRI (European Forum for Research Infrastructures) a dedicated site will be deployed to open European and National Research Infrastructures to demands of research on COVID-19, specific access calls, activities in place, etc.

EOSC (European Open Science Cloud) initiative is implementing different kind of actions to offer services in base the capacities already available to compute and share data to cope with matters related to the Coronavirus, and foresee to coordinate resources and services at European, national and regional level.
Other research specific fora in which Spain actively support EU cooperation include Horizon 2020’ program committees aimed at establishing proper administrative measures to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic and its effects on the research community (suspending calls; stopping cost and GA administrative procedures; considering a flexible allocation of research funds directly to Covid-19 funds, etc.

The Ministry for Science and Innovation is participating through Agencia SINC of the Spanish Foundation for Science and Technology (FECYT) in the European Science-Media Hub of the European Parliament to compile a list of reliable information sources, ranging from recognized official international webpages providing daily updates, to data and maps, as well as a selection of resources tailored for reporters and for tackling the spread of disinformation on the topic.
Sweden 2020-03-28 None regarding research
Switzerland 2020-05-20 The Swiss STI system is already strongly based on cooperation between the various players and is internationally well interconnected.

Swiss delegates in the Horizon 2020 Program Committees (Health, Innovative Medicine Initiative and Research Infrastructures) are involved in the development of the calls for proposal with specific focus on SARS-CoV-2. Swiss research institutions are contributing to six of the seventeen project funded by Horizon 2020 through the ad-hoc call. Currently researchers are preparing proposals for the ad-hoc call of IMI.

Switzerland is involved in the European Open Science Cloud, which supports the set-up of a European COVID-19 Data platform based on the EMBL_EIB initiative. Switzerland contributes to this platform.

The member states of the European Union (EU) and associated countries coordinate their research and innovation cooperation in the fight against the corona virus (see https://ec.europa.eu/info/files/first-er...). Switzerland supports the measures in the “ERAvs-Corona Action plan” as part of its participation in the European Research Area.

Several Swiss hospitals are participating in the WHO multinational SOLIDARITY trial (https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases...).

Thailand 2020-03-31 At international level, NRCT has arranged constant contacts with counterpart agencies around the world, including contact with the World Organization (WHO) and national agencies on lesson learned from the report of WHO in case of the investigation of the spread of COVID-19 in China to communicate about COVID-19 to the public.
Turkey 2020-04-10 The International Cooperation Department of TUBITAK (The Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey) coordinates STI cooperation for Covid-19 responses. The Department continues its efforts in order to facilitate and support international collaborative RDI projects in the fight against COVID-19. Turkey is already associated to the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 Programme, within the scope of which calls have just been opened. Researchers and the private sector in Turkey have and express intense interest in joining the international consortia for these RDI projects, which are focused on the spread of the virus, diagnosis and treatment methods; preventive vaccines, community protection and epidemic control.

Moreover, TÜBİTAK, as part of a more proactive approach, has initiated bilateral and multilateral cooperation actions to support joint RDI projects that will bring together Turkish researchers and researchers from countries with strategic importance in the COVID-19 pandemic. For this purpose, initial contacts have been made with TUBITAK’s counterpart bodies in China, South Korea, Germany, the United Kingdom, the United States, the Netherlands, Thailand and France. Calls for joint RDI support will be launched as part of the bilateral cooperation agreements with China and Thailand.

In addition, TUBITAK plans to launch a multilateral call that is focused on the private sector, in collaboration with Canada, Germany, Austria, Spain, France, the Netherlands and South Korea. The objective of this call will be to improve disease monitoring technologies utilized in personal protective equipment, disinfection materials, diagnostic and test kits and other therapeutics in the COVID-19 pandemic.
United Kingdom 2020-03-31 The Prime Minister has highlighted the need for ongoing international cooperation, particularly through the G20, to share expertise, support the global economic system and strengthen the ability of vulnerable countries to tackle the virus. He has stressed the need to support the WHO’s appeal and support vaccine development through the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations.

The UK has also pursued bilateral coordination. An example was the joint statement on 12 March by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and the National Natural Science Foundation (NSFC) of China highlighting their shared commitment to strengthening global collaborations and encouraging openness and data sharing to help ensure diagnostics, vaccines and prevention measures are developed rapidly for the benefit of every nation.
https://www.ukri.org/news/openness-and-c...