A girl peeks into a microscope while another one observes. Photo by: Zahur Ramji / AKDN / USAID / CC BY-NC-SA

Since launching its ambitious reform agenda in 2010, the U.S. Agency for International Development has sharpened its focus on innovation. Now, beyond looking for innovative ideas elsewhere, it wants to celebrate and harness the creativity of its own staff and that of its partners.

The USAID Office of Science and Technology is inviting its development partners to join the inaugural Science and Technology Pioneers Prize contest. Winning projects — and everyone involved in the design and implementation of these projects such as USAID personnel, staff of implementers, government counterparts and private sector groups, both local and international — will receive special recognition as well as public visibility through USAID platforms.

Here’s the criteria for judging, as stated by USAID:

  • Effective application of science and technology: What specific development problem was the intervention designed to address, and how?

  • Evaluation and learning: What evidence, reports, or assessments was the project design based on? Was there a systematic effort to understand the extent to which the project or activity was effective?

  • Alignment with USAID and mission strategy: How did science and technology play a direct role in achieving the development objectives?

  • Replicability: Could this approach, or elements of it, be implemented in other regions or countries?

  • Leveraging funding: How has the project leveraged funding from other donors, governments and/or the private sector?

USAID will continue accepting submissions through March 22. Email STpioneers@usaid.gov for questions on eligibility and contest rules.

Read our previous #innov8aid and share your own development innovation with us by emailing news@devex.com with the subject line #innov8aid.

About the author

  • Eliza Villarino

    Eliza Villarino currently manages one of today’s leading publications on humanitarian aid, global health and international development, the weekly GDB. At Devex, she has helped grow a global newsroom, with talented journalists from major development hubs such as Washington, D.C, London and Brussels. She regularly writes about innovations in global development.