The International Development Research Centre (IDRC) PAN Asia Networking initiative has been supporting small grants programs since 1997 under different program structures.
The first phase was from 1997-2001 when the IDRC PAN (Pan Asia Networking) R&D Grants program was established as a competitive grants scheme for ICT R&D activities in the developing countries of the Asia-Pacific region. This programme alone supported 25 projects totalling CAD 1.5 million.
A second phase was launched in 2001 as the "ICT R&D Grants Programme for Asia and the Pacific", as a funding partnership with the Asia Pacific Development Information Program (APDIP), the Asia Pacific Network Information Centre (APNIC) and the Asian Media Information and Communication Centre (AMIC, which also served as the programme administrator under separate funding) along with the Internet Society (ISOC) and Microsoft. This programme received a total of 642 project proposals from over 30 AP economies, and awarded 56 separate grants. The last round of competition was in held 2005 and was followed by a Learning Forum for past grant recipients, which provided feedback for future development and served as the base for evaluation.
A third phase started with the launch of the Information Society Innovation Fund (ISIF) in 2008 under a new funding partnership between the IDRC, ISOC, and APNIC, with additional support from the DotAsia organization. ISIF was described as “a grants and awards program aimed at stimulating and acknowledging creative solutions to ICT development needs in the Asia Pacific region, placing particular emphasis on the role of the Internet in social and economic development in the region, towards the effective development of the Information Society throughout”.
The ISIF fund has been administered by APNIC since 2008, under a separate funding arrangement with IDRC; while APNIC has also made a full contribution to the grants fund in each year. Up until November 2012, around AUD 700,000 had been granted to 28 initiatives from 14 economies in the Asia Pacific region, showcasing innovation, cooperation, and technical knowledge. Final reports from grant recipients are available for download under a Creative Commons License.
The ISIF Asia program conducted an internal review and evaluation during 2010 and lessons learned from this process have been incorporated into the development of the new framework for 2012-2015. The following publications were an outcome of the evaluation process.
|Small grants, inspiring innovation: a program review 2011||Small grants and awards, inspiring innovation: ISIF Asia 2012 update 2012|