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Coalition members subscribe to the following Guiding Principles that underlie and steer the conduct and evolution of the initiative:


Membership is open to eligible organisations (see ‘Membership’ section) from across the world that have signed the Agreement on Reforming Research Assessment, and thereby have agreed with reform on the basis of common principles and commitments within an agreed timeframe. Member organisations may leave the CoARA. The outputs of the work of CoARA are publicly disseminated. Openness is also expected within the CoARA as a way to have fruitful discussions and create valuable results.


The CoARA is composed of its member organisations. Decision-making relies on the General Assembly of member organisations, as well as on structures such as a Steering Board, with support from a Secretariat. The General Assembly decides the detailed organisation of the Coalition and the rules and procedures for its operation. The General Assembly also approves the annual work plan and budget of the CoARA as prepared by the Coalition Secretariat and reviewed by the Steering Board.

Collaboration and mutual support

While very significant work outside this Coalition will be carried out by the member organisations to implement their commitments, the Coalition offers a space for mutual learning and collaboration between its member organisations, and a supportive environment. The CoARA seeks collaboration, complementarities and synergies with other existing initiatives and organisations, as appropriate. Mechanisms for periodic interactions with, and involvement of international, national and regional authorities seek to ensure that policies and frameworks are conducive to the work of the CoARA.


The sharing of information and collaboration is expected to inspire the Coalition member organisations in their reform journeys, as well as organisations outside the Coalition, and the broader scientific community.

Commitment and autonomy

The CoARA supports and facilitates the implementation of the commitments by the member organisations, while respecting their autonomy.

Voluntary and community-driven

The CoARA is a public, community-driven coalition constituted of member organisations willing to work together. As one of the means to support implementation, Working Groups are established and work as ’communities of practice’ on specific topics. Working Groups are proposed at the initiative of member organisations, and participation from other member organisations is voluntary. In some limited cases, Working Groups may be proposed by the Steering Board. Other means such as workshops, webinars, (annual) conferences, seminars, trainings, etc. could also be used by the CoARA.


The Coalition strives to create a broad dialogue in research and academic communities and beyond, and to involve representatives from the research community in its activities and bodies, including representatives of early career researchers.


The CoARA is global in scope and seeks to promote broad, balanced and inclusive representation of its membership and stakeholder communities. The Coalition brings together research organisations at different levels of progress in reforms of research assessment and seeks to advance according to best practices. Inclusiveness is also expected within the CoARA bodies with respect to gender, ethnicity, age, disciplinary background, etc.


Communicating the progress made by each member organisation towards implementation of the commitments set in the Agreement on Reforming Research Assessment is primarily based on self-assessment shared publicly. Such a trust-based approach facilitates exchange of information and collaboration, including joint experimentation and sharing of tools as appropriate.


Support to the operation of the CoARA consists primarily of voluntary in-kind contributions from its member organisations, as well as funding obtained from research funding organisations and/or cash contributions from members.


The CoARA does not promote, endorse, or sell commercial products, technologies, or services, but instead develops open and re-usable outputs.

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