3 June 2019

IDIA hosts session on Gender-Based Violence at Women Deliver conference

Innovation is critical for delivering scalable solutions to the world’s problems. Gender Based Violence (GBV) is one of the most complex and unacceptable problems in the world. At this special session of the conference in Vancouver, members of IDIA’s Gender & Innovation Working Group hosted a discussion with 150 delegates exploring promising solutions at the intersection of innovation and GBV- including those fuelled by technology, and creative financing mechanisms.


1 MARCH 2019

GIZ joins the International Development Innovation Alliance

IDIA is thrilled to announce that GIZ, a development agency with over 50 years’ experience and operations in around 120 countries, has formally joined IDIA.


1 February 2019

Applications now open for the 2019 IDIA Training on Managing Innovation for Impact

IDIA is delighted to announce that the 2019 iteration of the IDIA training course on “Managing Innovation for Impact” will take place from 10-14 June 2019 and be hosted by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) at their Partnership Centre in Harnosand, northern Sweden. Applications are open from 1 February - 1 March for the 24 available places - good luck!


31 October 2018

UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore addresses IDIA meeting in New York

Today IDIA was delighted to welcome UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta H. Fore as a special guest speaker at the 2018 Autumn Members meeting hosted by The Rockefeller Foundation in New York. Ms. Fore challenged the group to work together to enable faster and fuller realization of scale of those successful innovations each organization finds and supports, emphasizing the importance of collective action not only for women and girls, but with them in design, and by them in delivery.


12 october 2018

Launch of IDIA ‘Managing Innovation for Impact’ training

This week saw the delivery of the inaugural IDIA ‘Managing Innovation for Impact’ training course in Bellagio, Italy. A cohort of 24 innovation managers representing 14 different countries came together with some of the world’s leading innovation thinkers and experts for a dynamic and challenging week of training.

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1 October 2018

IDIA launches new Insight Guide on Gender Equality & Innovation

The latest in the series of IDIA Insight guides provides a roadmap for practitioners, project officers, donors, innovators and others interested in sustainable development to begin to address gender equality and innovation in a more holistic manner—whether or not they are specialists in gender or innovation. Drawing on the experience and learning of a range of bilateral, multilateral, philanthropic, and civil society actors who came together in the IDIA Gender and Innovation Working Group, this resource includes a tool to promote reflection and provide guidance to embed gender strategies in innovation processes in order to incrementally lead toward gender-transformative change.


23 August 2018

Innovation at DFAT: Resilience is Key

Following the launch of its new Innovation Strategy for 2018-2020, Sarah Pearson, Chief Innovation Officer at the Australian Government Department of Foreign Affairs & Trade, shares some of her thinking in this interview with Catherine Cheney from Devex.

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8 AUGUST 2018

IDIA Member included on List of World's 100 most influential people in digital government

We are delighted to announce that IDIA Member David Ferguson (Director, Center for Development Innovation at USAID's U.S. Global Development Lab) has been included on a list of the World’s 100 Most Influential People in Digital Government. The list, compiled by Apolitical and drawn up through nominations from over 100 expert contributors, includes digital government experts, academics and public servants who are leading efforts to update the machinery of government around the world. We are also excited to see included on the list Phillip Thigo, Senior Advisor at the Office of the Deputy President on Data and Innovation Strategy in Kenya, who was a key participant in IDIA’s May 2018 conference on innovation ecosystems in Nairobi.

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2 JULY 2018

Australia launches new Innovation Strategy for DFAT

The Australian Department for Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) has released a new DFAT Innovation Strategy, which will guide their work for the next three years. The strategy will seek to spread innovation across all of the Department’s work, with the overarching vision of making DFAT known as an exemplar in foreign affairs, trade and development impact and influence through embedded innovation practices.

David Milestone, acting director of USAID's Center for Accelerating Innovation and Impact. Photo by: Devex

David Milestone, acting director of USAID's Center for Accelerating Innovation and Impact. Photo by: Devex

25 June 2018

IDIA members team up to bring Human Centred Design to Health 

The United States Agency for International Development and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation have joined forces to encourage more global health practitioners to build their programs around the wants and needs of the people they aim to serve.

Over the weekend, at the annual Aspen Ideas Festival in held in Aspen, Colorado, representatives of the U.S. donor agency and the world’s largest foundation launched a set of resources called “Design for Health.” These public goods—co-created with a diverse set of stakeholders across the public and private sectors and developed with the support of Dalberg Design and Sonder Design Collective—provide guidance around when, why, and how design can be used in global health, as well as a strategic roadmap outlining priority activities that can advance the appropriate application of design in global health.


11 June 2018

Applications open for IDIA 'Managing Innovation for Impact' training

Applications are now open for IDIA's brand new residential training course on 'Managing Innovation for Impact', which will take place at The Rockefeller Foundation Conference Centre in Bellagio, Italy, from 8-12 October 2018. Individuals who are currently managing innovation portfolios or who are developing new tools, innovative ways or working and/or investment strategies are encouraged to read about the structure of the course and the Frequently Asked Questions to determine their eligibility, before completing the online Application Form. Applications close at 6.00pm EST on Monday 2 July. Good luck!


5 june 2018

IDIA Call for Innovation informs the Whistler Principles to Accelerate Innovation for Development Impact, adopted by the G7

During the recent G7 Summit in Canada, Development Ministers from each of the G7 member countries (Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States) endorsed 8 principles to guide and accelerate innovation for development impact. These principles were based on those outlined in IDIA's 'Call for Innovation' launched in 2015, but add in a more explicit focus on inclusiveness and gender. A range of IDIA Principals from USAID, DFID, Grand Challenges Canada and the Global Innovation Fund were directly involved in supporting the negotiation of this outcome document, which will help G7 countries work together to accelerate inclusive, locally-driven innovation for development impact, drive change in their own organisations and with partners to support pioneering solutions that challenge traditional models, approaches and partnerships, and encourage new models and  solutions that can deliver results. Building on aid effectiveness principles and good practices and lessons, G7 Development Ministers will also encourage close collaboration across sectors for delivering development impact at scale.


24 May 2018

Innovation leaders convene at IDIA conference on 'Strengthening the Agricultural Innovation Ecosystem in Kenya' in Nairobi

As part of its ongoing exploration of local innovation ecosystems, the IDIA group convened a unique gathering of innovation leaders from government, private sector, academia and civil society at the International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology (ICIPE) in Nairobi, Kenya. 55 participants representing policymakers, entrepreneurs, company CEOs, investors and researchers came together for a day to discuss the challenges and opportunities for how they work together in advancing Kenya's agricultural policy and practice. Through a series of panel and roundtable discussions, participants unpacked key challenges and bottlenecks within the local innovation ecosystem, and created a rich framework of recommendations and partnership opportunities for overcoming these. Feedback from participants was extremely positive, with one suggesting that IDIA had "just delivered on of the most effective workshop models for international development discussions."

The IDIA Secretariat is now working with participants from the conference to shape the findings into an IDIA Insights report that can then be used to continue the country-level discussions and relationship-building catalysed through the meeting.  

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23 may 2018

Grand Challenges network feeds into the design of the IDIA innovation management training course

As part of the consultation informing the design of its new Innovation Management training course, IDIA convened a 2-hour workshop with 40+ delegates attending the global Grand Challenges Learning & Evaluation meeting in Naivasha, Kenya. Through a series of activities, participants shared key challenges they faced in managing innovation portfolios, teams and partnerships; identified priority capacity-building areas for the training to address; and collaboratively brainstormed from across their own experiences around best practices in the design and delivery of effective and impactful training programs. These rich insights will now be used to inform the curriculum and methodology for the training course, which is due to be piloted in October 2018. 

Photo credit: UNICEF

Photo credit: UNICEF

30 APRIL 2018

Innovation at UNICEF: Do it for the Kids

Ask about the leaders in innovation for international development, and you are likely to hear about the United Nations Children’s Fund, in part because it launched its innovation unit ahead of most of its peers. Launched in 2006, the Innovation Unit has since evolved into the Office of Global Innovation.  When Cynthia McCaffrey became director of the office in April 2016, her job was to make sure that all the work being done to leverage technology ultimately led to better outcomes for children. In an interview with Devex as part of the Meet the Innovation Leads series, McCaffrey spoke about her efforts to mainstream this innovation work at UNICEF.


21 November 2017

IDIA members participate in OECD-DAC Roundtable on Development Innovation for Agenda 2030

In late October 2017, the OECD Development Assistance Committee (DAC) convened a High Level Meeting entitled: "A New DAC: Innovations for the 2030 Agenda". Coming after this meeting, which endorsed a stronger role for the DAC in promoting development innovation, a special DAC Roundtable on Development Innovation for Agenda 2030 was convened in Paris, France, with the aim of enhancing shared understanding and knowledge of DAC members on the development innovation landscape and the work of IDIA. Participants (which included IDIA members from DFID, Global Affairs Canada, UNDP, USAID and the Global Innovation Fund) discussed a range of organisational tools for innovation, innovation financing instruments and approaches to measuring and tracking the impact of development innovation (including the frameworks developed by IDIA through its IDIA Insights series). 

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14 JULY 2017

IDIA launches Insight reports on Scaling Innovation and Measuring Impact

Today IDIA has launched the first three in a series of IDIA Insights reports that brings together the learning and experience of innovation experts from across IDIA member agencies and their partners. The first report, Insights on Scaling Innovation, presents a high-level architecture comprising six scaling stages, eight good practices and a matrix of influencing factors to help guide funders through the long and complex process of scaling innovation. The second report - Scaling Innovation: Good Practice Guides for Funders - explores the eight Good Practices identified in the first report in more detail, and provides funders with further guidance on tools and knowledge products that can help them start to operationalise these Good Practices within the context of their own agencies. The final report, Insights on Measuring the Impact of Innovation, looks at the key challenges for funders around measuring the impact of innovation, and presents key impact domains and indicators to help focus funder approaches. It also includes a case study on projecting the future impact of innovation created by Grand Challenges Canada and Results for Development.