On-going Projects

Evaluation of the Potential Challenges of Small Scale Tropical Fruit/Food Processing Industries from Konkan belt of Maharashtra.

Dr. Ketaki Barve

The study aims to evaluate the current processing status of tropical fruits such as Mango, Cashew, Jackfruit, Kokum, Karonda and Jamun in Ratnagiri and Sindhudurg districts of Kokan region in Maharashtra. It also aims to identify the major challenges faced by these small scale industries in achieving growth and sustainability.

Charmakars and 'Nano Entrepreneurship' in the Kolhapuri Chappal Industry: Issues and Challenges

Dr. Prashant Bansode

The proposed study is aimed to focus on the Charmakars and their challenges to entrepreneurship from the perspective of nano entrepreneurship. The broad objective of the study is to identify the clusters of Charmakars engaged in the Kolhapuri Chappal industry and identify their challenges and suggest policy measures for development of entrepreneurship.

Identify Key Issues and Challenges within the Bamboo Industry in the State of Maharashtra

Nitij Singh

The primary objective of this study is to document key issues and challenges within bamboo industry in the state of Maharashtra. The second objective is to identify necessary interventions to strengthen policy initiatives like – Gramodyog Vikas Yojana (Govt. of India MSME Scheme) and Krishonnati Yojana (Govt. of India Ministry of Agriculture Scheme) targeted towards strengthening bamboo industry in India.

Systematic Literature Review on Small Enterprises

Dr. Balu Pawde

The smaller firms (i.e. micro and nano) have a potential to provide solutions to problems faced by Indian economy and constitute a large part of the MSMEs, there are certain barriers to their growth. With these considerations, the project aims to create a document that will serve as a reference document for further studies that focus on generating useful evidence on nano enterprises in India.

Enhancing Entrepreneurs’ Adoption of OCEN-AA Ecosystem


The OCEN and Account Aggregator (AA) framework aims to enhance credit access for entrepreneurs through digital lending and data sharing. However, adoption by unorganised nano-entrepreneurs remains low. This project aims to undertake stakeholders consultations including regulators, fintech firms, and researchers to understand the prominent issues, and ongoing efforts in enablement and research to drive AA adoption. From the literature review and initial stakeholder discussions, the key barriers identified were product representation being non-compatible with behavioural aspects of potential borrowers as well as products not tailored to the needs, inadequate records, and lack of trust and low digital readiness among nano-entrepreneurs. Potential initiatives proposed include establishment of regulatory authorities for digital lending, supporting small banks’ technological readiness, piloting innovative data-driven products, intensive user awareness campaigns, and research on product acceptance and impact.

Building Ease of Doing Business - Growth Index for ‘Nano-enterprises’ (NSDC)

To materialise the nano-enterprises’ potential to generate income, employment and economic growth, a robust understanding of their nature, functioning, hindrances to their growth, and the reach of government’s policies to them is necessary. This understanding will potentially lead to formulating appropriate policies by the government and designing skill development programmes for the entrepreneurs. A primary survey across six Indian cities will be conducted to know the status of the nano-enterprises along various business dimensions, such as formalisation, assets, human resource, access to finance, compliance burden, etc., and to recognise the issues they face in conducting their business. Further, to see how ready the enterprises are for business growth, their progress along various business dimensions will be tracked. These set of indicators will ultimately lead to the nano-enterprises’ ease of doing business and growth indices at individual, sectoral and regional levels.

Enhancing Entrepreneurs' Access to Markets through the ONDC Ecosystem


One of foremost challenges for the growth of small businesses is the limitations in access to the market, as they are generally limited to the local geography, or are dependent on the intermediaries who dictate the prices and other terms of business. With the advent of digital platforms, e-marketplaces have come up as potential alternatives. However, small businesses face several barriers to their adoption, including limited awareness and knowledge of digital technologies, limited capacity to cater to the demands of online selling, monopolistic behaviour by large e-commerce platforms, and potential loss of intellectual property over innovative products. The Open Network Digital Commerce – ONDC promises to address these concerns, by acting as the ‘platform of platforms’, bringing buyers, sellers, and logistics partners together. This research attempts to undertsand the ONDC ecosystem and the barriers to its adoption by the small entrepreneurs, and aims to come up with actionable solutions and policy recommendations to enhance market access for them.

Report on the State of Nano-Entrepreneurship in India

Dr. Kiran Limaye

This project aims to deliver a comprehensive report on the state of nano-entrepreneurship in India, based on CEED’s own field-based research, secondary data analysis and insights gathered from stakeholder consultations.

Completed Projects

Inclusive Growth through Access to Finance: A Policy Brief on Nano Enterprises in Pune

This policy brief highlights finance access challenges and offers actionable recommendations to support nano enterprises’ growth, fostering grassroots economic development and sustainability.

Report on Urban Nano Enterprises in Pune​

This report highlights the struggles and challenges faced by service sector Nano businesses in Pune. The survey covered registered and unregistered nano enterprises, including grocery shops, boutiques, tutors, catering and food stalls, bakeries, salons, pharmacies, auto repair shops, retail outlets, trading outlets, and small restaurants.

Enhancing Market Access for Nano Enterprises in Food Processing

This roundtable report discusses how nano enterprises in the food processing industry face challenges in packaging, marketing, and accessing expertise and training. In order to unlock their potential, focus needs to be on standardization, rigorous implementation of government schemes, and proactive intervention by the authorities.

Seminar on Empowering Beauty Businesses

This report gives insights into the pointers given in the information sessions conducted by experts, wherein many intricate questions pertaining to business growth challenges and their solutions were addressed. The report also gives insights into the Focus Group Discussion (FGD) sessions which were also conducted for the beauty business owners group at the seminar in order to understand the entrepreneurial challenges of beauty businesses.

Roundtable Report
on Green Micro Entrepreneurship

The roundtable was conducted in collaboration with Center for Sustainable Development (CSD) at GIPE. The roundtable was a platform for stakeholders to share ideas, insights, and best practices around growth of green micro-businesses. It discussed green entrepreneurship, challenges involved therein and possible approaches to mitigate them, with stakeholders from different domains. It aggregated insights from various relevant fields and created a policy-design dialogue on this topic.

Roundtable Discussion Report on Fostering Entrepreneurship as a Means to Drive Economic Growth

This round table was conducted with the objective of gathering ideas, insights and recommendations on the research &advocacy direction that CEED should take towards increasing awareness about issues of entrepreneurs and envisioning how to build a better ecosystem &policies for driving entrepreneurship. The roundtable also marked the 1 year anniversary since CEED’s inception. It discussed identifying pressing problems of micro businesses that CEED should address, proof of concepts that should be conducted, and policy research that should promote their growth.

A study on the opportunities and challenges of Micro enterprises in Ladakh

A qualitative study based on a survey on the opportunities and challenges faced by formal and informal micro-enterprises in Ladakh. The survey attempted to capture the geographical, political and financial realities of micro-enterprises in a hilly region. In India, micro-entrepreneurs’ policies need to consider the socio-economic diversities of various areas and the difference in narratives. The idea this study beholds is to address the gravity of barriers to entrepreneurship, capture the nuances of the issues and advocate policies specific to the region.

A study on the adoption of digital financial services based on Technology Acceptance Model – Evidence from Annapurna Mahila Credit Cooperative Society

This study investigates the factors affecting the adoption of digital financial services among low-income self-employed women in India. The study identifies the critical determinants of digital financial inclusion of women self-employed in small informal sector businesses like tailoring, catering, etc. The analysis of their perceptions is based on Technology Acceptance Model. A survey of 155 women members of Annapurna Mahila Co-operative Credit Society. This study identifies the critical determinants of digital finance as low-income women entrepreneurs perceive. It proposes actionable policies for improving the usage of digitalization by women entrepreneurs engaged in tiny businesses.

deAsra Research & Insights

For over 6 years, deAsra Foundation has been fostering entrepreneurship, benefiting over 100,000 entrepreneurs. In addition to their work with entrepreneurs, they are also engaged in research, policy advocacy, and collaborating with development organizations to design and implement on-ground entrepreneurship programs. Please visit deAsra’s research page to know the highlights of their previous research & insights activities, which includes quarterly newsletters, impact reports and articles.