2014 Mobile for Development Utilities Innovation Fund: Call for Proposals.

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First Round:

  • Concept notes due December 7th, 2014
  • For successful organisations that pass through to the 2nd stage, decisions on funding are expected in April 2015

2nd Round:

  • Concept notes due March 29th, 2015
  • For successful organisations that pass through to the 2nd stage, decisions on funding are expected in July 2015

The Mobile for Development Utilities (M4D Utilities) programme, builds on the early success of the first phase of the programme under the Mobile Enabled Community Services (MECS) banner, through which £2.4M in grants were awarded across Sub-Saharan Africa and Developing Asia.

With the support of the UK Government, the M4D Utilities Innovation Fund will provide up to an additional £3.2M in grants.

The specific objectives of the Innovation fund are to:

  • Accelerate efforts using mobile technology to enable improved or increased access to energy, water and/or sanitation services for underserved communities
  • Identify innovative business models that can support mobile innovations for energy, water and sanitation services
  • Generate knowledge about the application of mobile enabled services which can be shared with the development community and mobile industry
  • Stimulate productive partnerships between mobile operators/tower companies and energy providers, water providers, sanitation service providers, utilities, NGOs, entrepreneurs and academics to achieve these objectives at scale

Grants

Seed Grants:

  • to support the research and development of early stage innovations using mobile to support access to sustainable energy and water provision
  • up to £150k in funding, 25% of total project cost matched by grantee, with the potential for staged funding if necessary

Market Validation Grants:

  • to support partnerships between mobile network operators and/or tower companies with community service providers to trial at scale promising mobile technologies and business models that have the potential to increase or improve access to water or energy services to underserved communities
  • up to £300k in funding, 50% of total project cost matched by grantee

Utilities Partnership Grants:

  • to support partnerships between a solution provider/innovator and a utility and/or a government agency to develop and trial promising models that use mobile to increase or improve access to energy, water and sanitation services to underserved communities in urban or peri-urban areas
  • up to £200k in funding, 50% of total project cost matched by grantee

Application Process

  • A two stage process starting with the submission of a concept note. Successful candidates will then be asked to submit a full application
  • Funding decisions are made on a competitive, deadline-driven basis by an independent assessment panel. Only the best applications will receive funding
  • Technical assistance (TA) provided at the discretion of the M4D Utilities Programme to support the development of applications, and implementation of projects. The type and extent of TA will be agreed between the applicant and the M4D Utilities Team at the application stage

Important dates:

First Round:

  • Concept notes due December 7th, 2014
  • For successful organisations that pass through to the 2nd stage, decisions on funding are expected in April 2015

2nd Round:

  • Concept notes due March 29th, 2015
  • For successful organisations that pass through to the 2nd stage, decisions on funding are expected in July 2015

For More Information:

Visit the Official Webpage of the Mobile for Development Utilities Innovation Fund

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