IEC launches a grant for research into financial education

27 November 2015

The Investor Education Centre (IEC) today announced a call for proposals for research projects that seek to advance financial education in Hong Kong.

Research and evaluation is critical to the development of financial education, and the IEC is keen to encourage high-quality research to contribute to the cause in Hong Kong. As such, the IEC has set up an annual research grant to stimulate wider interest in financial literacy research among the academics and financial education practitioners.

"Currently the practice of rigorous research and evaluation in the area of financial education is seemingly still in its infancy in Hong Kong. The lack of research funding is one of the barriers hindering development.” said Mr David Kneebone, General Manager of the IEC. “With the launch of this research grant, we hope to encourage critical thinking that can generate meaningful discussions among financial education practitioners and illuminate trends likely to affect the financial well-being of the Hong Kong population.

To be eligible to the 2015/16 round of funding, research projects must fall under any of the three areas listed below:

  • Impact evaluation of financial education initiatives
    Research that seeks to identify effective and scalable strategies to promote positive financial behavioural change.
  • The study of financial decision-making
    Research that explores insights into how people make decisions regarding personal finance, such as the determinants of both good and bad decision-making and the impact on future behaviour.
  • Financial education needs among specific target segments
    Research that illuminates financial literacy gaps among vulnerable groups such as the elderly, youth, lower income groups and ethnic minorities.

Seed grants for feasibility studies as a preliminary step to in-depth empirical research are also available. And seed grant recipients will be given priority in future funding rounds.

Grants up to HKD500,000 are available depending on the scope of the project. A research grant committee consisting of leading local academics and financial education practitioners is formed to guide the set-up of the research grant and assess all applications. Meanwhile, the IEC will administer and manage the operations.

The call for proposals will close at midnight on 15 February 2016.

For details of the research grant, please visit the IEC website