In June 2014 UNDP, with support of the Government of Denmark, launched the Innovation Facility, which is designed to offer the organization and its collaborators across the globe with technical and financial support to explore and try novel approaches to increasingly complex development challenges. This support includes seed funding for R&D, scanning and finding breakthroughs, building and testing prototypes of interventions. The Facility also offers platforms and incentives for sharing and communicating throughout the innovation process with a network of colleagues, for exchanging experiences, and learning across countries and regions.
Grants from the Innovation Facility so far have been deliberately small (between $40,000 and $100,000 per initiative), focused on initiatives linked to ongoing projects and programmes across UNDP’s thematic portfolio, and displaying the potential for scaling-up or adaptation. UNDP has also invested in the creation of a roster of Social Innovation experts in a number of specialized fields to support offices in their innovative endeavors.
In just a few months of implementation in 2014, funding from the Innovation Facility has already proven its efficacy in providing innovation champions in UNDP Country Offices with the necessary means and corporate backing to test novel concepts and solutions to persisting development challenges.
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