GSMA Disaster Response Innovation Fund

The GSMA Disaster Response Innovation Fund can provide funding to help you to test or scale it. We are looking for ideas that use mobile technology to assist and empower individuals or communities affected by humanitarian emergencies, or to strengthen prevention, preparedness and response in disaster contexts.

Funding of up to £300,000 per project is available, as well as promotion and networking opportunities. We fund either: Seed Projects to test new products or services; or Market Validation Projects to replicate proven products or services.

Applicants must be a collaboration consisting of two or more Mobile Network Operators, NGOs, humanitarian agencies, national emergency/environmental bodies and/or private sector companies. Project impact should be delivered in Sub-Saharan Africa, Asia Pacific, Middle East and North Africa, or Latin America.

The GSMA Disaster Response Innovation Fund (“the Fund”) aims to promote innovation in the use of mobile telecommunications to assist and/or protect individuals and communities affected by disaster/crises.

The Fund’s objectives are to support two types of projects:
Market Validation—Support the scale up or replication of an existing project, product or service, delivered through collaboration between mobile network operators (MNOs), non-governmental organisations (NGOs), humanitarian agencies, private sector partners and/or national emergency/
environmental bodies, which has previously delivered innovative, impactful mobile-based solutions for
disaster/crises affected populations;

Seed Project—Trial new products or services, where applicant organisations—MNOs, NGOs,
humanitarian agencies, private sector partners, and/or national emergency/environmental bodies—have established mutual interest in the proposed activity and intend to work together to test new business models that have the potential to demonstrate innovative, impactful mobile-based solutions for disaster/crises affected populations.

All grants are expected to provide examples of best practice and lessons learned on how mobile technology can drive improved preparedness, response or recovery in disaster situations. The Fund is particularly  interested in projects that can demonstrate financial and technical sustainability in the long term, beyond any  funding provided by the GSMA.

The Fund is supported by the UK Department for International Development (DFID), the GSMA, and its members.

The Fund is open to applications for innovative solutions that leverage mobile technologies to “save lives, alleviate suffering and maintain human dignity during and after man-made crises and disasters caused by natural hazards, as well as to prevent and strengthen preparedness for when such situations occur.”

The Fund is particularly interested in innovations that improve the interface between those affected by
disaster/crises and those providing assistance, be they humanitarian agencies, NGOs, governments or other private organisations. This could include a range of mobile platforms and applications, and specific technology areas. For a non-exhaustive list of innovations that would fall under this category, 

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