Youth and Vulnerability in the Middle East - Economic Research Forum (ERF)

Youth and Vulnerability in the Middle East

Youth and Vulnerability in the Middle East

ERF invites affiliates and non-ERF affiliates to submit proposals that enhance the understanding of youth vulnerability issues relevant to the region. The proposals may address any of the following sub-themes or relationships, focusing on a specific country, examining a country over time, or comparing multiple countries in the region, as per the terms outlined below. Quantitative and mixed-methods work are both eligible. Deadline for submissions: April 15, 2017.
Youth in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region face an array of economic, social, political, and health challenges during their transition to adulthood. Demographic trends have led to a disproportionately large youth population in MENA at the same time that institutions and services are increasingly struggling to support young people. This project will support research on critical issues of youth vulnerability, such as disability, refugee youth, multi-dimensional vulnerability of youth, and policy responses to youth vulnerability.
The sub-themes of the call include:
(1) disability, services, and inclusion for the disabled, especially disabled youth,
(2) services and inclusion for refugees, especially refugee youth,
(3) livelihoods and vulnerability to poverty among youth,
(4) vulnerability of youth to environmental risk factors,
(5) multi-dimensional analyses of youth vulnerability and resilience,
(6) vulnerability to harmful practices, such as child labor, early school drop-out, early marriage, and FGM/C, or to gender-based or other forms of violence
(7) and evaluations of policies or programs to incorporate marginalized and vulnerable youth into formal systems.
Other topics on youth and vulnerability will be taken into consideration. Authors interested in research on Jordan will be provided early access to the 2016/17 wave of the Jordan Labor Market Panel Survey, which over-samples non-Jordanian households.
All papers will be matched with an expert mentor to provide feedback throughout the research process.

Authors should submit an original proposal of a maximum length of ten double spaced pages [excluding appendices, tables, figures and references]. Proposals should be structured to contain the sections in the following format. ERF reserves the right to exclude proposals that are not consistent with these guidelines:

  1. Statement of the research problem: A clear and concise description of the nature and importance of the proposed research, its scope and boundaries, its general context, and its objectives, with explicit reference to feasibility and policy relevance.
  2. Value Added: A selective and analytical review of the relevant literature, with a view to both demonstrating knowledge of past theoretical and empirical work, as well as identifying the knowledge gap that the proposed research is intended to address.
  3. Conceptual Framework and Research Methodology: A clear statement of the conceptual framework should be provided, elaborating on the set of specific, identifiable and concrete questions for which the proposed research intends to answer. This is to be followed by an elaboration of the research methods to be employed and why they are best suited to answer the research questions. This section should also indicate the nature of the information required and the data collection techniques, whether primary or secondary or a combination of the two. Finally, it should explain how the information will be analyzed and interpreted using quantitative and/or qualitative methods.
  4. Deliverables: This section should describe the research products that will be delivered at various stages of the research process.
  5. Time Frame: A clear plan of the timing of all stages of the research project taking into account that all projects have to be completed before March 31, 2018. The timetable must specify due dates of draft and final papers as well as any planned events.
  6. Budget: The budget should be submitted in US dollars, itemized and inclusive of all research and dissemination expenses. Research costs should be by deliverables. Other budget items may include travel, if necessary, research assistance, data collection, office supplies and photocopying. The purchase of equipment is not allowed under ERF grant rules. If events are planned, separate costing is required.
  7. References: A list should be attached to the proposal specifying the suggested references to be used in writing the proposed paper(s).


  • Researchers should have expertise in the topic being researched.
  • At least one of the main researchers should be from the ERF region, whether residing inside or outside of the region.
  • Researchers from disciplines other than economics may apply.


  • The value added by the project in terms of contributions to existing knowledge.
  • The methodological soundness of the project, be it econometric or an in-depth case study.
  • The policy relevance of the findings.


All proposals and outputs will be peer reviewed. Authors of accepted proposals will be requested to respond to the comments of the reviewers.
● Deadline for submission of proposals: April 15, 2017
● Announcement of accepted proposals: May 15, 2017
● Submission of draft papers: December 1, 2017
● Workshop for discussing draft papers: Early January 2018
● Submission of final papers: March 31, 2018
Please forward your submission, together with:
● Author(s)’ CV(s)
● Two published papers
● The proposal identification sheet
TO: Ms. Sara Taraman –