In this article, the starting point for GROW’s Theory of Change is the Australian and international research that indicates that employment offers critical pathways out of disadvantage. Therefore, GROW recognizes that understanding the gaps and opportunities that exist for generating and targeting employment (i.e. creating a jobs bias towards more disadvantaged communities) at a systemic level is a critical part of addressing disadvantage.

A primary assumption of GROW’s approach in their theory of change was the fact that poverty and disadvantage is mediated by place and location; and conversely, place was a locus for improving the socio-economic opportunities of both individuals and communities. GROW’s Theory of Change starts from the premise that addressing complex issues requires collaborative and collective action across all sectors.

This report explains the logic that underpins this theory of change and then presents an evidence review relevant to the assumptions embedded within it.