DI receives grant from Gates Grand Challenges: “Using Data for Impact in Uganda Communities."


Development Initiatives Receives Grand Challenges Explorations Grant

For Groundbreaking Research in Global Health and Development

Development Initiatives (DI) announced today that it has received funds to launch a new partnered project titled “Using Data for Impact in Uganda Communities.” DI, a not-for-profit organisation with offices in the UK and Africa, is a Grand Challenges Explorations winner, an initiative funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.  The innovative global development research project will be headed by Simon Parrish, Programme Leader of the aidinfo programme at Development Initiatives, with partner Annette Were Munabi from Development Research and Training (DRT) in Uganda.

Grand Challenges Explorations (GCE) funds individuals worldwide to explore ideas that can break the mold in how we solve persistent global health and development challenges.  Simon and Annette’s project is one of more than 80 Grand Challenges Explorations Round 11 grants announced today by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

To receive funding, Simon and other Grand Challenges Explorations Round 11 winners demonstrated in a two-page online application a bold idea in one of five critical global heath and development topic areas that included development of the next generation condom, agriculture development, and neglected tropical diseases.

The project seeks to increase the usability of publicly available data about resource flows and social impacts, and through this, to enable better understanding of the impacts of resource flows on development in Uganda. The project team will work with community leaders in two districts of Uganda to identify the key heath and education questions they want to answer, and then collate all available localised data on the financial resources being spent in the two sectors –including aid, domestic budget, and private flows – while building interoperability with social impact data, in order to provide answers to the questions they identify. The team will then work with community groups to explore methods for accessing and improving the data and understand how knowledge gleaned from data can be applied in the community. This innovative ‘data partnership’ project will provide evidence-based recommendations for international stakeholders, who see interoperable data for poverty eradication as a global public good.

About Grand Challenges Explorations

Grand Challenges Explorations is a US$100 million initiative funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.  Launched in 2008, over850peoplein more than50 countrieshave received Grand Challenges Explorations grants.  The grant program is open to anyone from any discipline and from any organization.  The initiative uses an agile, accelerated grant-making process with short two-page online applications and no preliminary data required.  Initial grants of US$100,000 are awarded two times a year. Successful projects have the opportunity to receive a follow-on grant of up to US$1 million.

For editors

  1. Development Initiatives exists to end absolute poverty.  Through objective, high-quality research and analysis, we inform decisions at all levels that deliver better use of resources. We champion transparency, enable effective use of information and support others to deliver practical tools and systems for people to hold their representatives to account and to inform policy and practice. We have centres in the United Kingdom, Kenya and Uganda and have partners globally including governments, academic institutions, the private sector and citizen representatives. To find out more about our work visit www.devinit.org
  2. Simon Parrish is programme leader of the aidinfo programme at Development Initiatives. The aidinfo programme seeks to make information about poverty and resources transparent, accessible and useful. We work with both civil society and at the highest policy levels, to make data more easily available, and support people to understand and use it to enable transparency. We also play a key role as part of the shared hosting agreement for the International aid transparency initiative (IATI), a voluntary, multi-stakeholder initiative that seeks to improve the transparency of aid in order to increase its effectiveness in tackling poverty.