IsDB Enhancing Member Countries Preparedness and Response to COVID-19 Pandemic

IsDB Enhancing Member Countries Preparedness and Response to COVID-19 Pandemic

Based in Saudi Arabia, the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) is a multilateral development bank that strives to improve the lives of its Member Countries and Muslim communities worldwide. IsDB Engage is a digital hub set up to accelerate economic and social progress in the developing world through the power of science, technology and innovation.

IsDB’s Enhancing Member Countries Preparedness and Response to COVID-19 Pandemic initiative, operating through the Engage hub, is part of its Transform Fund Call for Innovation 2020. The Transform Fund helps to turn innovative ideas into development solutions and the 2020 programme will focus entirely on supporting IsDB Member Countries’ long-term preparedness and response to the coronavirus pandemic, including:

Emergency preparedness to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

Minimising the socioeconomic impact of the pandemic, especially on poor communities.

Building the resilience of IsDB’s Member Countries in responding to outbreaks and pandemics.

The call will identify, encourage and reward innovative proposals that will benefit local communities focused on the following:

Application of advanced technology, such as the Internet of Things (IoT), Big Data blockchain and Artificial Intelligence (AI) to track and monitor the spread of COVID-19 and other emerging infectious diseases for improved diseases surveillance systems and patient care.

Innovative health supply chain management systems, such as powerful search engine of medical supplies, new Biosafety Laboratory Level-3 Design technology and biocontainment.

Development of low-cost rapid tests and screening methods, such as point-of-care rapid tests, molecular tests and diagnostic test quality for early detection and diagnostic, treatment and prevention solutions (including vaccine production for COVID-19 and future emerging highly infectious diseases).

Capacity building interventions, targeted at improving operational capacities of health care providers in the field, epidemiology and infection control management of highly pathogenic cases, such as training, deployment of software applications, awareness campaigns, service delivery or research centres.

Applications should aim to tackle COVID-19 in relation to the following six UN Sustainable Development Goals: 2 – Zero hunger; 3 – Good health and wellbeing; 4 – Quality education; 6 – Clean water and sanitation; 7 – Affordable and clean energy; and 9 – Industry, innovation and infrastructure.

The scheme is open to scientists, innovators, companies (including SMEs) and institutions that require initial funding and growth capital for their ideas/projects. These ideas/projects must result in technologies and solutions that will contribute to the development effectiveness of IsDB Member Countries and Muslim communities in non-member countries.

The IsDB Transform Fund uses two modes of financing: grants and equity participation. The categories of application are:

New ideas with proof of concept: offers grants ranging from $50,000 to $100,000.

Capacity building in science, technology and innovation: offers grants ranging from $100,000 to $150,000.

Scaling up of innovative projects: offers equity participation of up to $300,000.

Commercialisation of technology: offers equity participation of up to $1 million.

Equity investments are only made to legally registered private sector companies that were founded by scientists and innovators (start ups). Projects should have a definite exit timeline, which should be agreed upon with IsDB in advance.

Applications must be submitted by the deadline of 1 June 2020.

More information about this research funding opportunity and the application process is available on the RESEARCHconnect funding information platform. RESEARCHconnect provides up-to-the minute content, insight and analysis on research funding news and policy. To find out more about how RESEARCHconnect can keep you in the know, and subscription fees, contact us today.