About the CFE

Our mission

Building strong and inclusive entrepreneurs

SMEs and entrepreneurs are drivers of sustainable and inclusive growth, and engines of innovation and transformation. They contribute to the social fabric and individual well-being, and champion sustainable business practices. Our work helps policy makers understand their various contributions and challenges and inspire innovative approaches to SME and entrepreneurship policy.

Go local: the power of place

While the OECD has traditionally worked with national governments, cities and regions hold key powers and resources to shape lives and livelihoods. We work with subnational partners to unlock growth, provide equal opportunities, and support the green and digital transitions. In doing so, we connect the local to the global, joining up national, regional and local-level forces to position cities and regions for success.

Driving change through data for policy

Robust, reliable and meaningful data empower policy makers, academics and citizens to develop, implement and monitor new solutions. The CFE supports evidence-based policy making by testing and producing new indicators, methods and analysis, and promoting the use of data and indicators in all phases of policy making. Our unique data science capability is pushing the frontiers of analysis – harnessing the power of novel data sources and techniques to generate new insights for policy-makers.

People, places and firms depend on each other

Policy makers must provide integrated solutions for people, places and firms. Urban infrastructure can influence entrepreneurship rates, just as the availability of public services in a rural area can profoundly shape a person’s future. The Centre pulls together the different pieces of the puzzle in a multi-disciplinary approach to provide a complete picture that drives economic and social development across sectors and places.

What works here may not work there

While there may be common lessons and practices that can be shared, uniform solutions for all people, places or firms do not work. The CFE focuses on how we differentiate policies to meet the needs of diverse situations.

Our structure

The work of the Centre for Entrepreneurship, SMEs, Regions and Cities (CFE) is governed by its committees and working parties, which are composed of senior civil servants from OECD countries nominated by their governments.

The Regional Development Policy Committee and its three Working Parties on Urban Policy, Rural Policy and Territorial Indicators, and its Expert Group on Multi-level Governance, serves as the premier international forum for policymakers to develop, analyse and advise on the implementation of regional development policies that address place-based challenges, opportunities and disparities, and how to implement effective multi-level governance.

The Committee on SMEs and Entrepreneurship leads the OECD’s work to provide Member Countries with policy analysis, policy indicators, statistics, and recommendations to unleash the potential of SMEs and entrepreneurship. It works to boost SME productivity and innovation and tackle the barriers SMEs face in accessing finance, international markets and skills. It also works to support them to grasp the opportunities and tackle the risks associated with going digital and going green.

The Local Employment and Economic Development Committee provides recommendations across a range of policies relevant for local development including local employment and skills, entrepreneurship, the social economy, social innovation, and culture and creative industries. Its Trento Centre for Local Development has been building capacity for local actors since 2003.

The Tourism Committee and its Working Party on Tourism Statistics and its Global Forum on Tourism Statistics, Knowledge and Policies provide evidence and policies to support domestic and international tourism, and seek to promote the sector’s transition to more sustainable and inclusive practices. The Committee actively promotes an integrated, whole-of-government approach, linking tourism to broader economic policies, including trade, investment, travel facilitation, employment, innovation, digitalisation, green growth, local development, SMEs and entrepreneurship.

The Centre actively engages with a wide range of stakeholders through unique global networks of Mayors, regional leaders, local practitioners and communities, businesses, entrepreneurs, and knowledge and educational institutions.



Director | OECD Centre for Entrepreneurship, SMEs, Regions and Cities



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Lamia Kamal-Chaoui is the Director of the OECD Centre for Entrepreneurship, SMEs, Regions and Cities since 2016.

As a key member of the OECD Executive Leadership team, Ms. Kamal-Chaoui supports the Secretary-General in achieving the OECD’s mission to advance economic growth and social progress as well as contributing to other global agendas such as the G20 and G7, the Paris Agreement on Climate Change and the implementation of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

Supported by a team of over 160 staff, Ms. Kamal-Chaoui leads the Centre’s work to advance the OECD mission of “better policies for better lives” by ensuring that all people, all types of places and businesses of all sizes can prosper from green and digital transitions (read the Centre’s brochure and dedicated blog for more details). This includes work in the fields of: SME and entrepreneurship policyRegional, urban and rural  development;  Local employment and economic development (LEED programme);  Subnational statisticssocial economyMulti-level governance, local finance and decentralisationTourism and Culture. 

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Deputy head of CFE

Contact us


You can reach the OECD Centre for Entrepreneurship, SMEs, Regions and Cities (CFE) via e-mail at [email protected]

Postal address

OECD Centre for Entrepreneurship, SMEs, Regions and Cities (CFE)
Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development
2 rue Andre Pascal, 75116 Paris


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