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Makerere Institute of Social Research (MISR)

  • Country: Kampala, Uganda
  • Date Established: 1970
  • Executive Director: Mahmood Mamdani
  • Research areas: Economics, Food & Agriculture, Governance, Health
In the next 5 years, MISR aims to focus its research and advocacy on peacebuilding and state building, issues we consider central to shaping Africa’s future. Our efforts will be guided by three objectives: to draw lessons from successful African efforts at peacebuilding and state building; to learn from the experiences of other parts of the world; and to engage critically with one-size-fits-all recipes, mainly from the North (whether from state or human rights agencies), that propose external solutions that sidestep the plurality of experiences.

The Makerere Institute of Social Research (MISR) was established in 1948 as the East African Institute of Social and Economic Research, serving several countries in East Africa. It became MISR in 1970 and is affiliated with Makerere University, Uganda’s largest public university.

MISR envisions itself as a centre of excellence in multidisciplinary research that aims to improve academic knowledge, inform public policy, and contribute to economic and social development. MISR’s mission is to respond to the needs of society through professional research, publication, training, and outreach activities.

MISR’s main research areas include governance and civil society, health, education, information and communication technology, environment and natural resources, migration, displacement and resettlement, urbanization, and economic policies.

MISR has strong links with Uganda’s policy processes. It sits on technical committees on HIV/AIDS, land, and education, and is a member of various ministerial departmental and policy working groups. The Institute has carried out several studies and training programs for the Ministry of Finance, Planning and National Development, and is known for its work on land and decentralization.