Research Themes




In keeping with the vision of its founder, Dr. Gamani Corea, the research program of the Foundation aims to ensure that policymaking is based on sound evidence and analysis that will enhance the economic, social and/or cultural development of Sri Lanka. The Foundation does this through its own in-house research as well as collaborative partnerships with other established organizations and individual researchers.


The overall focus of the Foundation’s research program is to build an intellectual center of high quality dedicated to policy analysis and research concerning development issues to which Dr. Gamani Corea had assigned high priority in his work at the national and international levels. Cutting-edge research in development topics, especially in economics, but also in other disciplines in the social sciences, as well as multi-disciplinary research will deliver evidence that helps address Sri Lanka’s structural problems of a medium and long-term nature. In so doing, the research agenda will also aim to deepen the understanding of development problems among middle and low-income countries more broadly.
As Sri Lanka transitions from a middle-income country to a high-income country, amidst far reaching global developments – global health pandemics, rising inequality and environment degradation – the perspectives on development processes and policies are being reshaped as never before. The Foundation’s current research program builds on its previous research efforts and addresses these emerging challenges through four clusters as outlined below.


Human resource development (strategies to achieve very high human development)

  • Tracking labour quality improvement
  • Education
  • Female labour force
  • Urban development for human development


State and development

  • Dynamic governance and public sector reforms
  • Income and wealth inequality
  • Private debt (household and aggregate)
  • Intergenerational social mobility
  • Social welfare and fiscal sustainability
  • Preventive healthcare



  • Agriculture for food
  • Agriculture for rural development


Environment and sustainable growth

  • Depletion of natural resources
  • Over-production and over-consumption
  • Post Covid-19 structural changes
  • Natural capital and national income accounts


Operational model
The research projects will be delivered through a number of channels:  (i) through internal research carried out by the Foundation’s own research team, (ii) from existing collaborative arrangements with other research organizations and individual researchers with a proven track record for research excellence, and (iii) by commissioning external research on relevant studies.
The Foundation offers grants and awards through open calls for funding for the above relevant categories. More details on funding opportunities and eligibility can be found in the Grant Information page.