The PEP "Grant Plus" mechanism

A program of manifold support to help strengthen research capacities in developing countries

PEP provides researchers based in developing countries with a sophisticated program of financial, technical and scientific support that systematically removes obstacles to the conduct of state of the art research in/from their home countries. 

Indeed, the provision of PEP grants addresses the lack of funding for research in developing countries, which all too often leads the best and brightest local researchers to move to developed countries. However, solving the funding issue is not always enough to convince local experts to pursue their research activities in/from their home country, and it is in this regard that PEP innovates in the support it provides.

PEP's comprehensive scientific support strategy ensures that local researchers in all regions of the developing world have access to advanced training, as well as continued mentoring provided by PEP-affiliated international experts. PEP also makes available all the documentation and software necessary - for the researchers to achieve the best possible analysis - as well as a variety of professional development grants, to promote their expertise both at the national and international levels.

Moreover, the organisational structure of PEP provides its members with a unique networking experience, enabling them to interact with peers all around the world (North and South) to remedy the lack of research infrastructure in their home countries. 

Find out more about the list of activities and various forms of support comprised in the PEP "Grant Plus" support program.

Current PEP initiative for research and capacity building

Researchers interested in benefiting from PEP support are invited to apply during one of PEP's recurrent calls for proposals, which are usually launched in the context of a PEP collaboration with specific donor institutions.

In 2012, PEP was granted funding by the Department for International Development (DFID) of the United Kingdom (or UK Aid) and the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) of Canada to lead a new research initiative entitled in developing countries.

Below is the description of the current PEP research initiative for which further new candidates may apply in 2013 and 2014:

New pep initiativeIDRC and UK aid


To build and promote research capacities in developing countries


Including research grants, scientific and technical assistance, training and mentoring by international experts, resources and international exposure

Applying new knowledge and techniques in the conduct of rigorous policy analysis

For up to 75 research teams based in developing countries

Selected through competitive calls for proposals - with priority given to low-income countries, fragile and conflict states


For the analysis of specific and country-relevant policy issues


Under the broad theme of inclusive growth and employment, the research agenda of the selected projects will be defined according to a list of priority issues identified by an international policy group as especially relevant to address specific knowledge gaps and policy needs in terms of evidence base in developing countries.  

For the first call, the identified priority issues are:

         Providing social protection to the informal sector

         Youth employment and entrepreneurship

         Employment intensity of non-agricultural growth


         Entrepreneurial risk tolerance by gender

         Discrimination in credit access for women at the SME level

(find a detailed description for each of the above-listed themes, HERE)


From a variety of analytical perspectives


PEP specializes and provides training in a variety of cutting-edge methodologies, tools and techniques of economic development research, such as:

         Community-based monitoring systems (CBMS)

         Macro-micro policy simulations (MPIA)

         Impact evaluations, including randomized controlled trials (PIERI)

         Microeconomic measurement and analysis (PMMA)


For the first (of three) PAGE call for proposals - launched in September 2012  - PEP received 151 proposals from 52 different countries, out of which 28 projects will be selected for support beginning in May 2013.

Two more calls for proposals will be launched in September 2013 and 2014

We recommend that you subsribe to PEP's main communication tools, such as our Facebook page or newsbulletin, the PEP Talk, to keep informed




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