មជ្ឈមណ្ឌលស្រាវជ្រាវសេដ្ឋកិច្ច និងពាណិជ្ជកម្មដើម្បីអភិវឌ្ឍន៍​ (មសពអ)

Centre for Development Economics and Trade (CDET)

The centre conducts applied and policy researches focusing on Cambodia’s economy, trade and regional cooperation. We monitor Cambodia’s economic management and performance; provide evidence-based economic policy analysis; and engage in local and regional dialogues to inform policymaking. Our research has a strong link to national policies, particularly the Rectangular Strategy (Phase IV) and the National Strategic Development  Plan (2019-23). Specifically, we contribute to two pillars of the NSDP: Economic Diversification, Private Sector and Market Development; and Sustainable and Inclusive Development. Our delivery mechanism includes policy and academic research, capacity building, knowledge dissemination and sharing, and policy influence and outreach. Our research agenda falls within five broad development areas: economic development, focusing on sustainability and inclusion; trade and regional cooperation; private sector development, focusing on small and medium enterprises; employment and employability, with a cross-cutting theme on gender and youth; and data for research and development (D4RD).

We have extensive experience on regional cooperation and research projects, working with think tanks and research institutes in ASEAN and the Mekong region. The Greater Mekong Subregion Development Analysis Network (GMS-DAN), founded in 1992, is an example of such collaboration. The GMS-DAN undertook a series of country research studies on a wide range of topics, from the impact of Asian financial crises on transitional economies, to cross-border migration and trade.

Research work by the centre include Labour Markets in Transitional Economies in Southeast Asia and Thailand; Off-farm and Non-farm Employment in Southeast Asian Transitional Economies and Thailand; The Cross-border Economies of Cambodia, Laos, Thailand and Vietnam; Labour Migration in the Greater Mekong Subregion; Inclusive Development in the Greater Mekong Subregion: An Assessment; and Health and Education in the Mekong Subregion: Policies, Institutions and Practices. Other regional projects include: “Job Prospects for Youth, Low-skilled and Women Workers” under the Greater Mekong Subregion Research Network (GMS-Net), funded by the International Development Research Centre (Canada), and “Agricultural Trade between China and the Mekong countries (Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam) funded by the Chinese government through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation. Another regional project is on the “Contribution of Vocational Skills and Development to Inclusive Industrial Growth and Transformation” funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation. Our researchers have worked with experts and researchers from Europe, Southeast Asia and Africa.

Ongoing projects  

1.Agricultural Trade between China and the Mekong-Lancang Countries: Value Chain Analysis 

Lead researcher: Mr Roeun Narith 

Partners: Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (China), Economic Research Institute for Industry and Trade (Laos), Centre for Economic and Social Development (Myanmar), Thailand Development Research Institute (Thailand) and Centre for Analysis and Forecasting Viet Nam Academy of Social Sciences (Vietnam) 

Funder: Lancang-Mekong Cooperation Special Fund through the Embassy of China in Cambodia and Cambodia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation 

Period: 2018-2020 

Description: This regional project aims to investigate the agricultural value chain of two selected products exported from Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam to China in the hope of exploring, among other things, key actors, their interactions, benefits, value-added and challenges. The project also plans to map out non-tariff measures (NTMs) introduced by Mekong-Lancang countries, compare them across those countries and examine exporters’/firms’ perspective regarding their effect on exports to China. A series of publication is expected by late this year.    

2. The Contribution of Vocational Skills Development to Inclusive Industrial Growth and Transformation: An Analysis of Critical Factors in Cambodia (Skills for Industry)  

Lead researcher: Dr Ven Seyhah 

Partners: Zurich University of Teacher Education (Switzerland), University of Zurich (Switzerland), BRAC University (Bangladesh), Mekelle University (Ethiopia), National University of Laos (Laos), University of the Witwatersrand (Republic of South Africa) and Ho Chi Minh City University of Technology and Education (Vietnam) 

Funder: Swiss Programme for Research on Global Issues for Development (r4d) 

Period: Phase 1 (2017-2020) and Phase 2 (2020-2023) 

Description: The project is implemented in two phases. Phase 1 focuses on the demand side of the labour market in garments, electronic and electrical assembly, and food processing industries. It aims at understanding the linkages between company growth and transformation as well as vocational skills development. Phase 2 is devoted to studying on the supply side including VSD providers and policy makers.   

3.Household Survey in 50 Communes around the Tonle Sap Areas 

Lead researcher: Mr Roth Vathana 

Funder: Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich (Germany) 

Period: 2020 

Description: A collaborate with a team of researchers from the University of Ludwig-Maximilians (LMU), Munich to conduct an experimental survey to investigate the impact of persistent memories of violence and the impact of salient memories. The survey is to be conducted in 50 communes in provinces around the Tonle Sap, interviewing 1,500 randomly selected households.    

 4.The 2020 round of panel data collection for agriculture, rural development and poverty reduction 

Lead researcher: Mr Roth Vathana 

Funder: CDRI-Sida with contribution from Saitama University and the World Bank 

Project period: 2020 

Project Description: CDRI has collected and maintained a panel data of households in rural Cambodia. The work started in 1996-97 when CDRI conducted a benchmark survey of three villages—Prek KhmengBabaong and Trapeang Prey. Data collection has been regular (one every three years) surveying 1,183 sample households in 11 rural villages, representing the four geographical locations (Mekong Plain, Tonle Sap, Mountainous and Coastal). Data can be used for rural poverty monitoring and research analyses.   

5. Digital Skills Assessment in Cambodia 

Lead researcher: Mr Roth Vathana 

Partner: National Institute of Posts, Telecoms and Information and Communication Technology 

Funder: Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications 

Project period: 2020-2021 

Project Description: The study adopts a multi-stakeholder approach investigating supply of and demand for ICT skills and overall level of digital literacy in Cambodia. The study’s findings contribute to the government’s efforts in building foundation for the digital economy in preparation for the transformation and adoption of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.  

6. Street Vendors Youth Employment and Poverty Reduction  

Lead researcher: Ms Sry Bopharath 

Funder: Sida 

Project period: 2018-2020 

Project Description: The purpose of the project is to examine the portfolio of street vendors in nine districts in Phnom Penh. The survey looks at their education, economic activities, income and expenses, and their life satisfaction. There are two phases. The first phase involved with mapping of 1,141 street vendors on 53 locations. 553 samples were randomly selected for second phase. The research findings will be published as a CDRI working paper. 

Economics

Dr VEN Seyhah

Research Fellow


Dr TENG Delux

Research Fellow


Ms SRY Bopharath

Research Associate


Mr ROEUN Narith

Research Associate


Mr KER Bopha

Data Analyst


Ms PON Dorina

Field-Work Coordinator


Mr VEUNG Naron

PhD Student


Mr HIEV Hokkheang

Research assistant


Ms PEN Socheata

Intern


Ms BENGHONG Siela Bossba

Intern


Mr HING Vutha

Research Fellow (on study leave)