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Funding Opportunities for RIE

There are numerous funding opportunities available for conducting rigorous impact evaluations (RIEs). These options include DEval's dedicated RIE funding program, as well as other notable funds, which are presented in detail in the table below.

3ie Funding

Short description: 3ie funds impact evaluations and systematic reviews of social and economic development interventions in low- and middle-income countries. It offers different kinds of grants to fund research to build a body of evidence and understand what works, why and under what circumstances in particular sectors and sub-sectors. 

Regional focus: Low- and middle-income countries. Also, depending on calls, specific countries only.

Eligibility to apply: Depends on call.

More information:

DFG Cooperation with Developing countries

Short description: The DFG enables research cooperations between researchers in Germany and in developing countries through research grants for individual projects. Their aim is to promote scientific cooperation between Germany and developing countries within the framework of scientifically demanding research projects.

Regional focus: Developing countries.

Eligibility to apply: Researchers/scientists from all subjects and disciplines at German research institutions and researchers from partner countries.

More information:

Foundation Fiat Panis

Short description: The main objective of the Foundation fiat panis is to promote research projects, master theses, and Phd theses which are likely to contribute to an improvement in the nutritional situation of people in countries with food deficiencies.

Regional focus: Developing countries.

Eligibility to apply: Applications for research support can be submitted by professors, directors, doctoral supervisors or similar. Applicants should hold a doctorate.

More information:

Fund for Innovation in Development (FID)

Short description: The Fund for Innovation in Development (Fonds d’Innovation pour le Développement or FID) is an initiative to support innovations that contribute to reducing global poverty and inequality. Through flexible grant funding, the Fund wants to enable innovators and researchers to test new ideas, build rigorous evidence for effective programs, and scale the highest-impact and most cost-effective solutions. FID relies on rigorous evidence of impact in determining which applications to fund and also supports research to generate evidence on development innovations.

Regional focus: Low- and middle-income countries eligible for ODA, see list here.

Eligibility to apply: FID accepts applications from nearly any type of applicant, independently or in partnership with others, including: research institutes and institutions of higher education, governments or public agencies, non-governmental organizations, and private, for-profit companies.

More information:

Global Innovation Fund (GIF)

Short description: The Global Innovation Fund, or GIF, is a social impact-first investment vehicle that works with mission-aligned development agencies, philanthropy, and other funders to find and fund evidence-based innovations with the potential to positively impact the lives of millions of the world’s poorest people. Entrepreneurs are guided through their journey to scale using a venture-style staged funding approach where more speculative ideas receive smaller amount of support and increased funding follows successful testing and achievement of proof points.

Regional focus: Developing countries.

Eligibility to apply: Any type of organisation may apply. This includes social enterprises, for-profit companies, non-profit organisations, government agencies, international organisations, and research institutions in any country. It is recommended that individual innovators, entrepreneurs, or researchers apply through an affiliated organisation.

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Innovations for Poverty Action (IPA)

Short description: IPA's research funds provide competitive funding for rigorous research on understudied topics of global policy interest. The funds are managed by in-house experts and supported by guidance from leading academic researchers. IPA has managed large-scale competitive funds for rigorous research (randomized controlled trials or RCTs, and other rigorous evaluation methods) on numerous topics.

Regional focus: Lower- and middle-income countries.

Eligibility to apply: Applicants may be from any institution so long as they have sufficient expertise to carry out the work (e.g. resarchers that hold a PhD or be currently pursuing a PhD in a relevant social science discipline).

More information:

International Growth Centre (IGC)

Short description: The International Growth Centre (IGC) works with policymakers in developing countries to promote inclusive and sustainable growth through pathbreaking research. It usually offers a wide range of funding opportunities for researchers. 

Regional focus: Focus on IGC partner countries: Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Ghana, Jordan, Mozambique, Pakistan, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Uganda, and Zambia.

Eligibility to apply: Researchers worldwide.

More information:

IZA/FCDO Programme on Gender, Growth and Labour Markets in Low-Income Countries (G²LM|LIC)

Short description: The fund aims at building a significant new body of evidence on gender, growth, and labour markets to help shape gender and labour market policies in low-income countries. 

Regional focus: Low-income countries.

Eligibility to apply: Researchers based in institutions and organizations from all over the world.

More information:

J-Pal Funding

Short description: J-PAL initiatives concentrate funding and other resources around priority topics for which rigorous policy-relevant research is urgently needed. Each initiative identifies key gaps in the evidence, funds cutting-edge research, and supports policy engagement to share results and scale up effective programs.

Regional focus: Depends on call.

Eligibility to apply: For all calls: J-PAL affiliated researcher or invited researchers as well as partner affiliates of the respective initiative.

More information:

Mercury Project

Short description: The Mercury Project mobilizes social and behavioural scientists in a search for cost-effective and scalable solutions to build vaccination demand and healthier information environments.

Regional focus: Low- and lower-middle income countries in Africa, Asia, and Latin America and the Caribbean.

Eligibility to apply: Researchers from around the globe, unless you or anyone in your team is linked to countries and/or entities currently under sanctions or embargoes by the United States’ Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC). Primary applicant organizations must be tax-exempt organizations or the equivalent in the local context (e.g., nonprofit organizations, universities, governmental units). Preferred applicants include researchers and research institutions located in the countries in which the study is being conducted.

More information:

SOR4D programme

Short description: The Solution-oriented Research for Development (SOR4D) programme is a joint funding instrument that builds on experiences and lessons learnt in previous joint programmes. The overarching goal of the SOR4D programme is to produce better knowledge, solutions and innovation by needs-driven, transdisciplinary research that opens up new ways for advancing sustainable development and reducing poverty in the least developed, low- and lower middle-income countries. 

Regional focus: Least developed, low-income and lower middle-income countries.

Eligibility to apply: Consortium out of 1) a responsible applicant from a research institution in Switzerland, 2) a co-applicant from a research institution in a least developed, low- or lower middle-income country, 3) a co-applicant development actor of a practitioner organisation located in the country/countries where transdisciplinary research is being conducted / also, if well justified, development actors from the Global North can be part of the applying team as project partners.

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Strategic Impact Evaluation Fund (SIEF)

Short description: The World Bank’s Strategic Impact Evaluation Fund (SIEF) supports scientifically rigorous research that measures the impact of programs and policies to improve education, health, access to quality water and sanitation, and early childhood development in low- and middle-income countries.

Regional focus: Low- and middle-income countries. The evaluation must take place in a World Bank client country. For a list of these countries, see here.

Eligibility to apply:  Researchers within and outside the World Bank. But: full proposal must be submitted by a World Bank regular employee. No universities or research organizations or firms can participate in SIEF’s call for proposals, as it is not a procurement process.

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The Structural Transformation and Economic Growth (STEG)

Short description: The STEG programme pursues a research agenda that aims to provide a better understanding of structural change, productivity and growth in low- and middle-income countries through providing grants via competitive calls. STEG will fund Small Research Grants (SRGs) and Larger Research Grants (LRGs), as well as PhD Research Grants and Ideas for Transformation policy concept papers (I4Ts).

Regional focus: Focus on low-income countries, particularly in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Eligibility to apply: Researchers all over the world. Grants are intended to fund academic research rather than supporting programmes.

More information:

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