Innovative ICT projects addressing openness, inclusion, human rights, and access get ISIF Asia funding for 2013

ISIF distributes AUD 330,000 in grants to 11 project teams in 2013.

Thanks to renewed financial support, the Information Society Innovation Fund (ISIF Asia) will distribute a total of AUD 330,000 in grants to 11 project teams in 9 Asia Pacific economies in 2013. These projects offer innovative approaches to development, addressing the challenges described by the ISIF Asia funding categories: innovation on access provision; innovation on learning and localization; code for the common good; and rights.

Phet Sayo, IDRC Program Officer, highlighted the impact of small grants funding: "The small grants mechanism allows us to achieve many things. More than a decade of experience in seed funding for ICT for development initiatives has proved it is possible to spur on local innovations with inspiration from broader global ICT trends, and the impacts on society. At IDRC, we are interested in building research fields, including ICT for development, and the emerging field of open development. Seed funding enables us to learn about the trends, ideas, and actors in the region."

ISIF Asia is a mechanism to give back to the local Internet community by investing in ICT research and development; to support research that can assist Internet growth in the Asia Pacific region; and to facilitate networking and information building throughout the Internet community. "Sida believes that new technology can serve as a tool to create innovative, effective solutions that can assist people living in poverty to improve their daily lives. The ISIF Asia grant winners of 2013 are clear examples of how this can be achieved," said Sida ICT4D Program Officer Ola Pettersson.

The renewed financial support, from IDRC, Sida, ISOC, Dot Asia, and APNIC, has enabled ISIF Asia to reactivate its grant funding capabilities. APNIC Director of Learning and Development Dr Philip Smith thanks the commitment of funding organizations in their support of ISIF Asia's goal to improve ICT growth in the region, particularly in developing economies.

"The ISIF Asia program had limited resources during 2011 and 2012, and could only give awards to innovators in the region. It is really exciting to be able to provide more substantial support again."

The 2013 ISIF Asia Grant winners submitted project proposals aligned with the funding categories and eligibility criteria, offering innovative approaches to Internet development. Teams will implement their projects within a 6 to 12-month period, and final technical reports will be shared through a Creative Commons License.

Innovation on access provision

Code for the common good

Innovation on learning and localization