Humanitarian Innovation Fund - Humanitarian Innovation - Diffusion Stage

A small grant up to £20,000 is available for the Diffusion phase of the process. This means the diffusion and extended outreach of successful innovations – taking them to scale and leading to wider adoptions outside the original setting. This might mean scaling within a large organisation, or transferring knowledge to other actors. This will likely see the original innovation continually developed and refined .

At a Glance

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December 31st, 2015

How to Apply

About This Funding Opportunity

Funding Stats

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Eligibility Details

Selection Criteria

All proposals will be assessed against the following selection criteria with equal weighting:


1. Impact
The HIF funds innovation that responds to significant challenges within the humanitarian field. We want to understand the potential impact of your project.
Please explain the importance of the specific issues you plan to address, where possible supporting this with evidence. We are keen to see references to literature reviews, case studies, specific demands by practitioners and beneficiaries, or other forms of evidence that highlight the opportunity you see.

Our priority is to support innovations that demonstrate the potential for scale up, replication or transferability elsewhere within the humanitarian sector. Therefore please indicate how widespread the effect of your project could be, and the ideas you have for achieving this.

2. Approach
Innovation is a creative process, and it also requires a rigorous approach to designing, testing, learning, and building evidence for what works and what doesn’t work. We refer to this as your methodology.

In particular for the Diffusion stage please explain how you will facilitate scaling up of your innovation as widely as possible.

It is important that you are able to make evidentially robust statements about the performance of the innovation. Your proposal must explain what performance criteria and indicators you will be using for the innovation. These criteria are what will enable you to judge whether your innovation has been successful or not, and to compare the performance of your innovation with existing practice.

Working effectively with your partners is critical to the success of your innovation. Therefore please include in your proposal how you intend to collaborate.

If the innovation doesn’t progress as you had planned, we are interested to know your organisation’s exit strategy (i.e. how will you incorporate changes in your progress to affect longer terms plan )and also how you intend to capture and share the lessons learnt for the maximum benefit of the humanitarian community.

3. Feasibility
We expect to see a convincing implementation plan outlining how project activities will be effectively delivered on time and to budget.

We need a clear timeline of all the activities planned, and an understanding of how each activity supports the project’s objectives. Given the need to be flexible in these kinds of processes, please also explain what the key decision points are in your timeline for making substantial changes to the project plan.

Special attention will be given to how the proposal represents value for money.

We believe that taking risks is an inherent part of the innovation process. We will be looking for your application to highlight what risks your project entails and what the mitigation strategies are for each. We are happy to take risks with our funding, however this must be the right kinds of risk, and not put affected populations in harm’s way, or lead to the misuse of funds.

It is important to be collecting information to monitor and report on the project deliverables throughout. At any time you should be able to answer questions about the progression of the project on an output level.

4. Team
The project team should be clearly capable of carrying out the work described and have a relevant track record which supports the project proposal.

In particular applicants should be able to demonstrate an understanding of how to bring new practices into operational contexts.

Please provide summary CVs (using our template provided) of key members of team as attachments to the application as well as any other documentation detailing operational/research experience.

Application Guidance

Please read all the included documentation and send completed small grant applications to our funding team, following the instructions outlined in the application pack.

Please download the small grant application pack for application templates.

The final evaluation and selection of all proposals is made by the HIF Grants Panel, comprising independent voluntary experts with expertise in various humanitarian programming sectors, as well as knowledge of innovation processes more generally.

Recognition project proposals are reviewed by the HIF team on an ongoing basis.

Proposals will not be considered for full evaluation if:

The application is incomplete
The application exceeds 5 pages (excluding attachments)
The proposal exceeds the maximum duration/value allowed
The applicant, project, or costs are not eligible

An evaluation of the quality of proposals, including the budget and the capacity of the applicant, will then be carried out in accordance with our selection criteria. The projects will be screened and referred to selected members of the Grants Panel for final approval.

A final decision will be made no later than one month after official receipt of the application.