Call for Ideas: The GiZ Decentralised Development Lab (DDLab) for Innovators (50,000€ in Technical and Financial Support)

Application Deadline: December 31st 2021

The Decentralised Development Lab (DDLab) has been developed by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH and commissioned by the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) through the “Bund-Länder-Programm – German Government and Federal States Programme (BLP).” The project is implemented in collaboration with external partners.

The Call for Ideas is an integral step of the Decentralised Development Lab. It is about sharing innovative ideas that have the potential to solve one of the given challenges and getting those ideas ready for the incubator phase. Don’t worry if your idea is not deeply elaborated yet. The Call for Ideas is also there for you to exchange and team up with other individuals or organizations to form specialized teams that can tackle the challenges optimally.


 DDLab is looking for individuals and gender-diverse teams with various backgrounds and experiences who can contribute their expertise and creative energy to one of the four challenges. At this early stage, it is more important that we create strong teams than having your ideas fully elaborated yet.

  • Social and public innovators, social entrepreneurs, innovative start-ups and socially oriented small and micro enterprises
  • Experts for topics that are related to the challenges: Researchers & PhDs, research institutions and associations, universities and colleges
  • Governmental and quasi-governmental institutions
  • Experts for new technologies, programmers and digital entrepreneurs


  • Technical and financial support equivalent of up to 50,000€ for your team and the chance to win a follow-up package worth up to 200,000€.
  • Accompanying events and workshops to connect and co-create with other idea providers
  • Access to an international network of subject matter experts, agile coaches, public and social innovators and creative minds
  • 1-on-1 coaching, curated tools and content to support your journey through the Decentralised Development Lab

If you have been selected for the program, you will receive technical and financial support to further develop your team’s idea. Your team can get up to 8,000€ direct financial support and up to 12,000€ funding for external experts during the incubation phase as well as coaching, workshops, training and support services equivalent to 30,000€ (equivalent to 50,000€ for your team).

As part of the winning team at the end of the incubation phase you will have the chance to win a follow-up package worth up to 200,000€ for implementation. In the Lab, you have access to an international network of entrepreneurs, experts and coaches and accompanying events to connect and co-create with other idea providers. You can get 1-on-1 coaching and use provided tools and content to support your journey through our platform.

Join the Call for ideas! Until Dec 19th, you have the opportunity to get to know the challenge owners, to dive into our creative community and co-create and to submit your ideas. At the end of the call for ideas, an expert jury will select four ideas out of all
submissions to be awarded a grant for a five-month incubator program worth a financial equivalent of up to EUR 50,000,-. Later on, you will additionally have the chance to win a follow-up package worth up to EUR 200,000

How to Participate

  • You can participate by submitting an idea for a solution to one of the four challenges presented on this platform and putting together a solution team for this idea by December 19, 2021 and by completing an additional application survey by December 31, 2021.
  • You can participate exclusively via this platform.
  • Please use the submission form that you can find on the challenge subpages. You may edit your idea and your team set-up until the final submission date.


December 19th, 2021 – Deadline to submit your idea
December 31st, 2021 – Deadline to submit final Application Form
January 3rd to 16th 2022 – Short-listing
January 24th to February 4th – Interviews
January 24th to February 4th – Evaluation of post-interviews
February 7th, 2022 – Announcement of the four selected teams
End of February, 2022 – Kick-off of the 5-month incubation program
End of July, 2022 – Pitch event and selection of the winning team
Early August, 2022 – Kick-off of the 7-month accelerator program for the winning team
End of February, 2023 – Closing of program

This timeline is dependent on approval by BMZ to extend the implementation period of the programme.

For More Information:

Visit the Official Webpage of the GiZ Decentralised Development Lab (DDLab)


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