mom with daughter, Nairobi, Kenya

Growth and Economic Opportunities for Women

GrOW works with research teams around the world to generate evidence on women’s economic empowerment and to promote the use of research by key decision-makers.


Women around the world are increasingly participating in economic activities, yet they continue to face significant challenges in accumulating assets and in pursuing better paid and more productive jobs. More knowledge is needed to determine the best ways to overcome these obstacles, which include deeply rooted and restrictive social norms that limit women’s choices and access to opportunities, and the lack of recognition and value given to women’s dual roles as caregivers and breadwinners.

Our approach

The Growth and Economic Opportunities for Women (GrOW) program aims to fill the knowledge gap by providing evidence to inform social and economic policies that improve poor women’s lives while promoting economic growth. GrOW also promotes the use of research by decision-makers and seeks to enhance the research capacity of young and Southern-based researchers.

GrOW fulfills these objectives by:

  • Funding 14 research projects in 50 countries, primarily in South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa;
  • Promoting peer-learning and knowledge exchange between research partners to share best practices and strengthen capacities;
  • Stimulating policy dialogue by helping research teams develop strategies for policy engagement and facilitating these interactions through conferences, workshops, and webinars;
  • Synthesizing evidence under emerging themes to fill critical knowledge gaps.

Launched in 2013 in partnership with The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation and the UK’s Department for International Development, this five-year, CA$17.5 million program has generated knowledge about women’s economic empowerment, gender equality, and economic growth in low-income countries.

Our projects

Explore research projects that we support.

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The UK Department for International Development

The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation