The Afghanistan Research and Evaluation Unit (AREU) is a Kabul-based independent research think tank established in 2002 with the assistance of the international community in Afghanistan. AREU’s mission is to inform policy and practice by conducting high-quality, evidence-based research and actively disseminating the results, and to promote a culture of research and learning.
AREU achieves its mission through active engagement with policymakers, civil society actors, researchers, and the development assistance community in Afghanistan to promote their use of AREU’s research publications and its library, strengthening research capacity and creating spaces for analysis, reflection, and debate.
AREU is governed by a Board of Directors comprised of representatives of donor organizations, embassies, the United Nations and other multilateral agencies, Afghan civil society, and independent experts.
AREU’s core donor is the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA). Specific projects in 2019 are being funded by the European Union (EU), United States Institute of Peace (USIP), Norwegian Institute of International Affairs (NUPI), Overseas Development Institute (ODI-UK), School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) and Economic and Social Research Council United Kingdom (ESRC-UK), UN-Women, Save the Children, Royal United Services Institute (RUSI), and University of Essex.
AREU holds memberships in multiple international development consortiums including the RESOLVE Network, Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF), Secure Livelihoods Research Consortium (SLRC) and A Conflict Sensitive Unpacking of The EU Comprehensive Approach to Conflict and Crisis Mechanism (EUNPACK).
AREU has been ranked as the top think-tank in Afghanistan by the University of Pennsylvania’s Global Go To Think Tank Index Report in 2017, 2018, and 2019. The report also ranked the organization as number 3 in Central Asia. In 2018, UK-based Prospect Magazine recognized AREU as the top International Social Think Tank.