Policy Analysis on Growth and Employment (PAGE)
PAGE was a global research and capacity-building initiative for Policy Analysis on Growth and Employment, funded by the Department for International Development (DFID) of the United Kingdom (UK Aid) from 2012 to 2020, and the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) of Canada from 2012 to 2021.
In accordance to PEP’s core mission, the PAGE initiative includes an important capacity building component. Teams of individual researchers based in developing countries have benefited from PEP’s unique Grant Plus research support program as they conduct high quality and policy-engaged research projects.
Research teams were selected on a highly competitive basis, through a series of open calls for proposals that were launched annually, from 2012 to 2019. While the calls were open to all developing countries, priority was given to applicants from low-income economies, fragile and/or conflict states (LFCs).
Through this flagship initiative, which comprised three distinct phases (see below), PEP supported 124 policy research projects, involving 560 local researchers (56% women) in 47 developing countries, including 59 (48%) projects in fragile contexts (LFCs).
All of these projects are now completed, and their results published as PEP working papers and policy briefs; see also, summaries of the findings. Several have also resulted in publication of high-ranking scientific journal articles.
The success of the program, in terms of both scientific quality and policy impact, is demonstrated by the statistics below, and the many impact stories.
Impact of PAGE
See also, the PEP Impact 2012-2020 brief.
The initial phase of the PAGE program comprised three rounds of funding. PEP selected 65 projects in 34 countries from more than 400 proposals submitted under three calls launched in 2012, 2013 and 2014. Over half of the 274 researchers supported were women, and 29 (45%) projects were led in LFCs.
Under the broad theme of inclusive growth and employment, a list of priority issues was identified as especially relevant to address specific knowledge gaps and policy needs in terms of evidence base, for each of the annual PAGE calls for proposals.
A number of common themes emerged from the research teams’ perspectives following the evaluation of their countries’ priority issues, these are summarized in the following articles:
- Female entrepreneurship hindered more by social and cultural contraints than access to finance
- Why youth become entrepreneurs
- Introducing a minimum wage can improve well-being
- How migration and remittances affect welfare and employment at home
- Managing the mining industry to help reduce poverty
- How cash transfers support vulnerable populations
- How informal sector workers protect themselves without access to social assistance
Building on the success of PAGE I, DFID and IDRC decided to support three additional funding rounds. Over 600 applications were received in response to a new series of calls for proposals launched between 2016 and 2019.
The three funding rounds supported a total of 60 projects involving 285 researchers in 38 different countries (including 30 projects in LFCs). These included the first Institutionalization Project.
The following five themes were identified by PEP-affiliated international experts as priority issues for these new rounds.
- Youth employment; supply and demand side constraints and related policy options
- Gender and women’s economic empowerment
- Entrepreneurship and financial inclusion
- Productive employment in rural farm and non-farm sectors; increasing labour productivity and reducing factor market imperfections
- Sectoral composition and patterns of economic growth; implications for job-creation, employment and poverty reduction
PAGE II-Round 3
Gender-sensitive Analysis on Entrepreneurship and Financial Inclusion, and Rural Employment in Africa
Building on the significant outcomes and lessons drawn from the PAGE II initiative, the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) of Canada awarded PEP additional funding to extend and deepen the program between 2019 and 2021.
This new round of support (PAGE II-Round 3) saw 14 mixed government-research teams conduct gender-sensitive, policy-oriented research projects in ten African countries (particularly West Africa). The research projects relate to the themes of:
- Entrepreneurship and financial inclusion, and
- Productive employment in rural farm and non-farm sectors.
PEP commissioned a series of articles, papers and briefs to identify key lessons for gender policy in sub-Saharan Africa, from the findings of these 14 projects:
- A local, gender lens to define policy options for women’s employment in Africa, by Angela Hawke
- Gender perspective on productive employment in rural farm and non-farm sectors in Africa, by Rosebell Kagumire
- Other papers and briefs are forthcoming