Human Trafficking Research Initiative – Request for Expressions of Interest

Human Trafficking Research Initiative – Request for Expressions of Interest

Effective with the release of this announcement, the Human Trafficking Research Initiative (HTRI) invites researchers, policymakers, and implementing organizations to submit Expressions of Interest (EOI) to measure the impact of counter-trafficking programs.

HTRI welcomes proposals to assess counter-trafficking interventions across the “4 Ps” of trafficking (prevention, protection, prosecution, and partnership). Applicants can request full funding for randomized control trials (RCTs), partial funding for RCTs, or funding for new arms of existing RCTs.

Applicants should review HTRI’s Learning and Research Agenda, which outlines key learning questions and priority areas of research. These topics were developed through a consultative process with leading policymakers, practitioners, and researchers focused on human trafficking and migration. Research should be designed to directly measure impact within specific sectors of counter-trafficking and respond to one or more of thelearning questions in the Learning and Research Agenda. Complete information about the EOI requirements and submission process can be found in the HTRI EOI Application Guidelines.

HTRI is a five-year project funded by the Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons (the TIP Office)’s Program to End Modern Slavery (PEMS) at the U.S. Department of State and is guided by the academic leadership of Dr. Cecilia Hyunjung Mo and Dr. Guy Grossman. HTRI was established in 2020 to support practitioners, policymakers, and researchers in strengthening the evidence base on effective interventions to reduce trafficking and protect victims. HTRI is focused on bringing increased rigor and use of applied quantitative research methods to the field of human trafficking research. As such, only applications that include the use of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) or similar rigorous research methods will be considered for funding. 

All EOIs must be submitted through IPA’s online portal by 11:59 pm US Eastern time on October 15, 2021. EOIs will be reviewed by a rotating group of academic researchers and assessed against the evaluation criteria noted in the HTRI EOI Application Guidelines. Successful EOIs will be invited by the selection committee to submit a full proposal. HTRI plans to make up to six awards in this funding round.

Question & Answer session for this EOI will be held at 9 am US Eastern time on September 27, 2021. If your team is interested in attending the session, please register here. A recording of the session will be posted afterwards for those unable to attend the live session.

All research grants must focus on one or both forms of trafficking in persons as defined by the Trafficking Victims Protection Act (as amended):

  • Sex Trafficking – when a trafficker uses force, fraud, or coercion to compel a person to engage in a commercial sex act or when a trafficker causes a child who has not attained 18 years of age to engage in a commercial sex act.
  • Forced Labor – when a trafficker recruits, harbors, transports, provides, or obtains a person for labor or services by using force, fraud, or coercion.