What is Ideas to Impact?

Funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID), Ideas to Impact supports research and development in Climate Change Adaptation, Energy Access and WASH technologies for developing countries.

Through the design and implementation of five innovation prizes, Ideas to Impact will test whether prizes can be designed to achieve significant benefits for marginalised and impoverished communities.

It will do so by attracting and focusing innovative capacities on longstanding challenges around climate change adaptation, energy access and water and sanitation.

Ideas to Impact will be documenting and sharing research and lessons learnt along the way.

Why Innovation Prizes?

Research and development is changing. The internet now provides boundless opportunity for posting problems to wide audiences, dramatically increasing the rate of problem resolution and opening up fields of endeavour to new participants from unexpected sources.

This process of Open Innovation is gaining momentum across the globe in both the public and private sector.
Innovation prizes build on open innovation principles incentivising participation, generating a media buzz, and helping capture the imagination of communities. The Ansari $10m X Prize, for example, opened up the world to the possibility of commercial space flight and is credited with catalysing the commercial space industry.

Ideas to Impact will test and learn about the potential for Innovation Prizes to spur development outcomes and catalyse advances in environmental technologies for the benefit of the poorest.

Ideas to Impact Team Leader, Bryony Everett discusses the potential of innovation prizes to support development outcomes and the aims of the UK Aid-funded Ideas to Impact programme.

We invite you to browse this site to find out what our prize teams have been up to.