STEG has identified six research themes and three cross-cutting issues that help to guide the initiative.


Find out more about our grants and funding calls.

Research funded and promoted by STEG may focus on broad systemic patterns and processes of structural transformation and growth for low- and middle-income countries, in a comparative sense across time or space, or more narrowly defined topics related to one or more of the following six research themes:

  • Theme 0: Data, Measurement, and Conceptual Framing
  • Theme 1: Firms, Frictions and Spillovers, and Industrial Policy
  • Theme 2: Labour, Home Production, and Structural Transformation at the Level of Households 
  • Theme 3: Agricultural Productivity and Sectoral Gaps
  • Theme 4: Trade and Spatial Frictions
  • Theme 5: Political Economy and Public Investment

STEG is also focused around three cross-cutting issues that are simultaneously relevant to many areas of structural transformation, including the six research themes:

  • Issue 1: Gender
  • Issue 2: Climate Change and the Environment
  • Issue 3: Inequality and Inclusion

Research proposals speaking to these issues in the context of structural transformation will receive particular consideration.

The six research themes and three cross-cutting issues are organising principles for funding calls, grant application evaluations, and workshop topics but these are not exclusive lists of themes and topics. Other areas of interest may not fit cleanly into any of the themes but are centrally relevant to STEG and are also encouraged. Examples include multi-sector analyses of growth, the effects of demographic change, the role of skills and human capital, the growing relevance of the digital economy, public finance and its relation to long-term growth, and the importance of infrastructure investments and management. Conversely, it is important to note that the themes are interrelated with some important topics spanning multiple themes. For example, informality is important to both firms (theme 1), labour (theme 2), and public finance (theme 5).

More information on our research themes and cross-cutting issues can be found in our Research Strategy.

About STEG Themes & Issues