Stem cells can self-renew and produce daughter cells destined for differentiation. The precise control of the balance between these two outcomes is essential to ensure tissue homeostasis and to prevent uncontrolled proliferation resulting in tumor formation. As self-renewal and differentiation are likely to be controlled by different gene expression programs, unraveling the underlying gene regulatory networks is crucial for understanding the molecular logic of this system. In this study, we have characterized by next generation RNA sequencing (RNA-seq) the transcriptome of germline stem cell (GSC)-like cells isolated from bag of marbles (bam) mutant Drosophila ovaries and compared it to the transcriptome of germ line cells isolated from wild-type ovaries. We have complemented this dataset by utilizing an RNA-immunoprecipitation strategy to identify transcripts bound to the master differentiation factor Bam. Protein complex enrichment analysis on these combined datasets allows us to delineate known and novel networks essential for GSC maintenance and differentiation. Further comparative transcriptomics illustrates similarities between GSCs and primordial germ cells and provides a molecular footprint of the stem cell state. Our study represents a useful resource for functional studies on stem cell maintenance and differentiation.