UNICEF Innovation Fund 2016 for Open Source Technologies for Children

Application Deadline: 1800hrs (Eastern Standard Time) on 26 February 2016.

The purpose of the UNICEF Innovation Fund is to invest in open source technologies for children. The Fund has raised $9 million so far and offers innovators in developing countries a pooled funding mechanism to help them take their tested projects to the next stage. The Fund brings together models of financing and methodologies used by venture capital funds and the principles of UNICEF’S award-winning Innovation Unit.

UNICEF works with governments, civil society organizations, and other organizations around the world to advance children’s rights to survival, protection, health, development and participation and is guided by the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

UNICEF invites expressions of interest to receive funding that will be made available through the UNICEF Innovation Fund. The Fund provides investment-style funding for early-stage, open source technology solutions that address the most pressing challenges faced by children and young people. Expressions of interest are invited from companies/institutions registered in UNICEF’s programme countries. Interested companies must meet the criteria required to be eligible  for funding as detailed below.

The Fund does not help large companies to create new business lines. The purpose of the Innovation Fund is to support new solutions from small businesses in markets that many companies or investors consider risky while UNICEF sees these markets as sources of opportunity. UNICEF will support companies registered in these markets in UNICEF’s programme countries- with a small amount of money to move solutions to the stage where these are proven to be workable and can be implemented.

Eligibility criteria:
UNICEF is looking to provide investment-style funding to early-stage tech startups. Only entities that fulfill these mandatory requirements will be eligible:

●        A private company/institution registered in a UNICEF programme country (see list here)
●        Working on open source technology solutions (or willing to be open source) under the following licenses:

Software: BSD, AGPL, LGPL
Content and designs: Creative Commons CC-BY-SA or CC-SA
●        Projects funded need to increase the ability of children to access information and to increase opportunity and choice.  Specifically, projects should align with one of UNICEF Innovation’s three portfolio areas:

  1. products for youth under 25 to address a range of needs including learning and youth participation
  2. real-time information for decision making and governance
  3. infrastructure to increase access to services and information, including connectivity, power, finance, sensors and transport.

●        Generating publically exposed real-time data that can be / is measured

For More Information:

Visit the Official Webpage of the UNICEF Innovation Fund 2016

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