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KIX regional call FAQs

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1. Which are the four KIX grant regions?

KIX launched the following four regional competitive calls to generate and mobilize innovative knowledge for education challenges shared across Global Partnership for Education (GPE) member countries.

Call for expressions of interest in the KIX Europe, Asia, and Pacific region

  • Call launch: July 15, 2020
  • Call closes: September 2, 2020

Call for proposals in Latin America and the Caribbean

  • Call launch: July 15, 2020
  • Call closes: September 30, 2020

Call for proposals in West and Central Africa and the Indian Ocean

  • Call launch: July 31, 2020
  • Call closes: September 30, 2020

Call for proposals in East, Southern, and West Africa

  • Call launch: August 28, 2020
  • Call closes: November 6, 2020

2. Which countries are the focus of each call?  

Projects funded through these calls must focus on and take place in GPE member countries. They should engage with education system stakeholders in those countries.

Please consult the list (below) of eligible GPE countries in each region.  

Europe, Asia, and Pacific Region

Latin America and the Caribbean

Africa 21

West and Central Africa and Indian Ocean

Africa 19

East, Southern, and West Africa







Kyrgyz Republic 

Lao PDR 







Papua New Guinea 



Timor Leste 










St. Lucia 

St. Vincent and the Grenadines 


Burkina Faso 


Cabo Verde 


Central African Republic 



Côte d'Ivoire 

Democratic Republic of Congo 








Republic of Congo 



Sao Tome and Principe












Sierra Leone 

Somalia (Somaliland and Puntland)  

South Sudan 

Tanzania (mainland and Zanzibar) 




3. Who is eligible to submit an application as an individual organization or to lead a consortium? 

KIX regional calls prioritize funding to Southern organizations. 

Eligibility for the Call for Expressions of Interest in the KIX Europe, Asia, and Pacific Region: 

  • Organizations based in one of the countries that make up the KIX Europe, Asia, and Pacific region (see list in Annex A of call document). 
  • Organizations based in low- and middle-income countries from the following regions: Central Asia, Caucasus, Eastern Europe, the Middle East and North Africa, South Asia, Southeast Asia, and the Pacific Islands. Organizations in these regions are eligible to apply as individual organizations, lead organizations of a consortium, or as a consortium member.  

Eligibility for the Call for proposals in the KIX Latin America and the Caribbean Region: 

  • Proposals must be submitted by nationally/internationally registered or incorporated organizations located in any country in Latin America and the Caribbean. 

Eligibility for the Call for proposals in the KIX West and Central Africa and the Indian Ocean Region:  

  • Proposals must be submitted by nationally/internationally registered or incorporated organizations located in any country in Africa. 

Eligibility for the Call for proposals in the KIX East, West, and Southern Africa Region:  

  • Proposals must be submitted by nationally/internationally registered or incorporated organizations located in any country in Africa. 

4. Is priority given to applications from organizations in GPE member countries (compared to those based in a country in the regions described in the call)? 

There is no preference and both will be evaluated equally. 

5. What do you mean by “individual organizations”?

Individual organizations may be non-governmental organizations, civil society organizations, universities, academic institutions, research institutions, think tanks, private sector (for profit) organizations, or private foundations (not for profit). 

Organizations based in the region(s) specified in the call are welcome to apply as individual organizations or as leads of consortia. 

6. What is meant by “consortia”? Who can be a member of a consortium?  

  • Consortia refers to groups of organizations that come together to submit a proposal to receive KIX funding and to implement the project. Groups of up to three organizations (maximum) may submit an application as a consortium. 
  • Proposals from consortia must name one lead organization. The lead organization must be an organization based in the region of the call (see above).  
  • Consortium members may include organizations from within the region; national, regional, or international offices of multilateral organizations or international NGOs; or other organizations from outside the region.  
  • Fair and equitable partnerships must be established among consortia members. 

7. What criteria will you look for in a lead organization? 

  • Ability to manage a large-scale grant from a financial and operational point of view; 
  • presence in the field; 
  • thematic experience in the subject of the proposal; 
  • ability to articulate multiple partners and members of a consortia (if that is the case); and 
  • ability to participate in knowledge exchange dynamics with the other cohorts of projects approved. 

8. May consortia have additional partners? 

Yes, consortia may name additional partners involved in the project. It may be necessary to include additional partners, such as teacher associations, a relevant non-governmental organization, or people with specific research expertise.  

Each project should consider stakeholders relevant to the project’s objectives, including stakeholders relevant to knowledge mobilization strategies, and how to best engage them. 

9. May consortia include national governments? 

No. The majority of GPE funding goes directly to governments to implement their education sector plans. KIX is an additional mechanism in support of education sectors that targets different actors. However, applicants are encouraged to include national and local governments as strategic partners in their projects. Scaling in education systems will most likely need connections with governments. 

10. Do consortia need to include Canadian organizations?  


11. Should partners be in the same geographical region? 

No. Consortium partners do not need to be in the same geographical region. The lead of a consortium must be from within the region of the call, but consortium members may be from anywhere. 

12. Can KIX help match applicants to form a consortium? 

No. It is the responsibility of the applicant to find partners and form a consortium. IDRC does not match grantees to form a consortium. 

13. May for-profit organizations apply for KIX grants? 


  • However, for-profit organizations that provide core education services (e.g., private schools), are not eligible for KIX funding. KIX will remain consistent with GPE’s private sector engagement strategy
  • Proposals that include private sector actors should demonstrate how private sector resources (for example, financial or technical know-how) will contribute to the project. 
  • All grant recipients, including for-profit organizations, must comply with IDRC’s Open Access Policy. 

14. May an organization that has previously or is currently receiving funding for initiatives from IDRC, the Global Partnership for Education, or the Knowledge and Innovation Exchange allowed to apply to this call? 

Yes, organizations that were previous or are current grantees of IDRC, GPE, or KIX are allowed to apply to the regional call. 

15. How many applications may an organization submit?  

There is no limit to the number of applications an organization may submit. You may submit as many proposals as you like as an individual organization, as the lead of a consortium, and/or as a member of a consortium. 

16. May an organization submit applications to more than one regional KIX call? 


17. May an organization with a pending registration in an eligible KIX country apply to a call?

Organizations must already be registered or incorporated in a KIX targeted country (Annex A of the calls) or in the regions explicitly defined in each call in the Eligibility section.


18. What are the regional policy challenges? 

Each call is designed to respond to the demands of the GPE member countries for knowledge and innovation. To identify these demands, the KIX regional hubs led a process across GPE member countries (from March to July 2020) to identify shared policy challenges for public education systems. The process involved consultations with government and non-governmental education stakeholders from the countries, regional experts, and a review of education sector plans and regional education analyses. 

Aligning calls for proposals with key priorities that emerged, KIX intends for the projects it funds to be directly relevant and useful to these education systems 

Progress and priorities report:  

  • KIX Europe, Asia and Pacific Hub: EN, FRSP  

  • KIX Latin America and the Caribbean Hub: (EN), (FR), (SP)  

  • KIX West and Central Africa and the Indian Ocean (Africa 21) Hub: (EN), (FR), (SP)  

  • KIX East, Southern, and West Africa (Africa 19) Hub : (EN), (FR), (SP

19. Is it better to respond to only one regional challenge or a number of them in a proposal? 

Proposals should only mark the challenges to which they strongly relate. Relating to multiple challenges is not necessarily better than relating to only one. 

20. Is it possible to submit a proposal that is implemented between two KIX regions (for example, one country in KIX 19 and two countries in KIX 21)?

No. KIX regional calls are designed to respond to the regional demands of GPE member countries. To identify these demands, the KIX regional hubs led a process across GPE member countries to identify shared policy challenges for public education systems. Each call aligns with key priorities that emerged from the region and KIX intends for the projects it funds to be directly relevant and useful to these education systems.

21. What are the differences between the Africa 21 and Africa 19 calls?

  • Each hub brings together countries that share common educational and linguistic history, geography, and environmental characteristics, in addition to similar socioeconomic challenges. The Africa 21 region is made up of GPE member countries primarily in West and Central Africa and the Indian Ocean. The Africa 19 region is made up of GPE member countries primarily in East, Southern, and West Africa. Learn more about the KIX regions here. The calls focus on different challenges.
  • An organization based in Africa may apply as an individual applicant, lead of a consortium, or member of a consortium for either the Africa 21 or Africa 19 call. The difference is the challenges identified in each call document and the focus of the projects.
  • Proposals for the Africa 21 call must focus on at least three of the GPE countries in the call region (please see list in question #2 or Annex A of the Call Document).
  • Proposals for the Africa 19 call must focus on at least three of the GPE countries in the call region (please see list in question #2 or Annex A of the Call Document).

22. What levels of education are covered by the call?

  • KIX programming covers pre-primary, primary, and early secondary education. 
  • KIX also focuses on teacher professional development.

23. May projects be related to higher education or technical and vocational education and training (TVET)?

No. As a GPE mechanism, KIX focuses on early childhood to early secondary education, in addition to teacher training. However, higher education institutions may be involved in addressing these challenges and teams based at these institutions are welcome to apply. Individuals are not eligible for funding.

Although other IDRC programming focuses on strengthening TVET and higher education, it is not a focus of KIX calls.

24. Clarification of the call scope

We would like to stress the importance of identifying innovative approaches to address one or more of the shared policy challenges, especially if you are not already working with a specific approach.  The approaches can be promising or already proven. They should be clearly identified and presented (its name, where it has been applied, evidence of its results). Due to the scope of the call, which focus on action-oriented research, projects cannot start from exploratory research to create an innovation. Additionally, the 31 months are insufficient to design, test, and provide elements for scaling the innovation. Please focus on existing innovative approaches and how these could scale, connected to public education systems.  For those projects that will involve scanning for additional innovations, include potential selection criteria you will be using during the identification process.


25. What is meant by supporting knowledge generation “about and for scaling”? 

Scaling is the process of improving and deepening the reach, breadth, scope, quality, equity, and sustainability of the changes, benefits, and solutions that innovations bring to education systems.  

The projects will fund applied research in support of scaling the selected innovative solutions. This could include: 

1. Measures to adapt and refine the innovative solutions to the contextual needs of the selected countries; 

2. Developing and testing means and models to scale them; 

3. Supporting capacity-building of people or groups who will use the adapted approaches; and 

4. Assessing results. 

KIX will not support the actual scaling of proven innovations within the selected countries and regions. Full-scale implementation of an innovative approach at the national level in multiple countries is beyond the budget and mandate of KIX. 

26. What scaling support will KIX provide to the selected regional grant projects?  

Selected regional grant projects will have an opportunity to receive support with their scaling research through ROSIE (Research on Scaling the Impact of Innovations in Education). ROSIE is a KIX project being led by the Center for Universal Education at the Brookings Institution that has two key functions. The first function is to support global and regional grantees to enhance the quality and results of their scaling efforts by providing them with scaling-related frameworks, methodologies, and resources; strengthening scaling-related capacity through knowledge exchanges, peer-to-peer learning and targeted mentoring support, and collaboratively generating new scaling insights and applying them to their work. The second function is to capture meta-learnings across the KIX projects about scaling the impact of education innovations in low- and middle-income country contexts. Grantees will use generated findings to inform their actions and scaling efforts as well as contribute to global evidence base on scaling in education. The selected projects interested in receiving support and participating in ROSIE will need to submit a short expression of interest. If regional projects choose not to apply to take part in ROSIE, they will still benefit from access to its framework, methodologies, resources, and findings and they will receive research support from program officers responsible for their projects. You may find more information about ROSIE here


27. What is KIX?

The Knowledge and Innovation Exchange (KIX) is a joint endeavour between the Global Partnership for Education (GPE) and IDRC. The goal of KIX is to strengthen national education systems and accelerate educational progress in the Global South by addressing knowledge gaps, increasing access to evidence, and strengthening systems to support the generation and uptake of evidence and innovations in GPE member countries. 

KIX consists of a funding mechanism that provides grants at global and regional levels to invest in knowledge generation and innovation and to scale up proven approaches.  

28. What are Global Partnership for Education (GPE) member countries?

GPE works with close to 70 developing countries to help them develop and implement quality education sector plans and build strong education systems. Countries join the partnership once they have developed a comprehensive education sector plan that is endorsed by their partners. Learn more.

KIX regional calls are designed to respond to specific priorities of GPE member countries in the specific region indicated. Annex A of the respective call document provides a list of the GPE member countries in the region. 

29. What is meant by “research”?

  • KIX regional grants are intended for research for development projects that are problem-focused, action-oriented, and designed to generate new knowledge and evidence. 
  • They also creatively identify, engage, and involve multiple types of knowledge users to ensure that research is relevant and accessible.
  • Users typically co-create the knowledge alongside researchers. 
  • Projects are designed to be relevant to inform policy, practice, and technological development.

30. What is the “continuum of gender integration”?

The continuum of gender integration refers to strategies applied in program assessment, design, implementation, and evaluation that take gender into consideration and address gender-based inequalities. 

Projects should either be gender aware, gender sensitive, gender responsive, or gender transformative.

The following is a guide to gender integration:

  Gender Aware  Gender sensitive  Gender responsive  Gender transformative 
Definitions  Gender (the differentiated and intersectional experiences of women, men, boys and girls) is considered in the research projects rationale but is not an operative concept in the design and methodology for implementation.  Gender is considered in research projects rationale and is addressed in the project design and methodology but does not (yet) extend to analysis and action to address gender inequalities Gender is considered in the research projects rationale, design, and mythology methodology and is rigorously analyzed to inform implementation, communication, and influence strategies.  Examines, analyzes, and builds and evidence based to inform long-term practical changes in structural power relations and norms, roles an inequality’s that define the differentiated experiences of men and women. Gender transformative research should lead to sustained change through action. 
Key question to ask  Does the rationale for the research include evidence on the differentiated roles, experiences, impacts on men, women, girls and boys?  + Does the research design include analysis of the differentiated roles, experiences, impacts on men, women, girls and boys?  + Does the research use analysis to implement actions to address, build on, respond to the result of the analysis. 

Does the research go beyond the analysis of differentiated roles, experiences, perceptions gaps and explore the underlying structural causes, norms, power relations that caused these differences? 

PLUS: does the research implement actions to address these underlying structural causes, norms, power relations that cause the differences? 

Applicants are strongly encouraged to seek out resources on appropriately addressing gender equality, equity and inclusion in the project proposal, for instance this Guide to Integrating Gender in your Proposal

31. What do you mean by “innovation”?

Innovation refers to a combination of tools, practices, policies, programs, technologies, approaches, methodologies, or any other interventions that can be used to improve education access and quality in developing countries. The combination of different elements can vary according to contexts and needs to produce new solutions to education problems. 

32. Is there a methodology that IDRC prefers? 

No, we have no preference, but the selected methodologies must be appropriate to answer the questions and achieve project objectives. Proposals must be explicit and elaborate on the justification for methodological choices. The quality of projects will be assessed against IDRC’s Research Quality Plus Framework (as indicated in the call document).


33. Who are the education stakeholders?

Education stakeholders may include (but are not limited to) local education groups, teacher unions, school principals and teachers, parents and children, education ministry officials, development partners, and policymakers.

34. How should I demonstrate work in a GPE member country and engagement with education stakeholders?  

  • Engagement with education stakeholders may be demonstrated through previous or on-going projects implemented by the organization. 
  • The organization must clearly present education stakeholders involved in these projects and provide details about their role as partners or direct beneficiaries.

35. May an individual organization apply to work in the required number of GPE member countries in the region without evidence of partnership in each country?

Yes. We understand that applicants may have engaged with stakeholders in some countries, but not all. Please explain your experience and present a knowledge mobilization strategy for the proposed project that includes any additional stakeholders or country contexts (to ensure the project is relevant and achieves its results).

36. If IDRC or GPE is already funding initiatives related to policy challenges, is it necessary that proposals fit into those projects?  

Projects funded under this call are expected to: 

  1. Scan for and identify relevant approaches and innovations to address the shared policy challenge. Relevant approaches may include those already funded by GPE or IDRC but may also include others from within or outside the countries involved. These may or may not have external funding.
  2. Adapt and further test those approaches to assess how to scale positive impacts in GPE-member countries. 
  3. Mobilize knowledge and build capacity so the approaches may be taken up in policy and practice.


37. Does the “lead” organization assume all financial responsibilities? May other consortia members assist in the financial, administrative, and logistical management?  

The lead organization is responsible for ensuring that there is one grant agreement with one main recipient who is responsible for all aspects of the grant. The lead recipient may enter into sub-grant arrangements with partners who can then be responsible for portions of the work (reporting back to the lead), but ultimately the lead organization is responsible for reporting on all financial and technical matters related to the work.

38. What is the budget range per project and the amount of overall funding per region?  

Individual project budgets vary between CA$750,000 and CA$1.2 million. The total available funding varies by region:

  • KIX Europe, Asia, and Pacific region: CA$7.75 million
  • KIX Latin America and the Caribbean region: CA$4 million 
  • KIX West and Central Africa and the Indian Ocean region: CA$7.75 million
  • KIX East, Southern, and West Africa region: CA$7.75 million


39. How do these calls fit among other calls I've seen from KIX?  

  • In 2019, KIX launched a call to identify the groups that will coordinate regional hubs. KIX also ran a global call in 2019 to fund research on Strengthening education systems with proven innovations to address six core themes in education systems. The projects funded work in at least three countries across at least two KIX regions.
  • A cross-cutting theme in KIX’s work is how to ensure that the impact of innovative approaches for education are effectively and appropriately scaled in national education systems, therefore KIX invited proposals for Research on scaling the impact of educational innovations.
  • To respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, KIX issued a closed call for proposals to support an observatory on the impacts of the pandemic and policy and practice responses in GPE-member countries in Africa.
  • Throughout July and August 2020, KIX is launching four regional calls designed to respond to the demands of GPE member countries for knowledge and innovation. Each KIX regional hub led a process from March to July 2020 across GPE member countries to identify shared policy challenges for public education systems. The process involved consultation with key national education policymakers from GPE member countries, local education groups, education experts in the region, plus a review of education sector plans and regional education analyses. The priority identification process shapes the agenda of the regional hub and is also the basis through which IDRC, in consultation with GPE, selected the challenges to include in the regional calls.
  • Proposals funded by regional calls will contribute to broadening knowledge about innovations in education and how to scale them. As they involve multiple countries, they will also incorporate knowledge transfer. These represent key elements of KIX that were present in previous calls.
  • The regional call is part of a broader mechanism within KIX to fund research that generates evidence to inform policymaking. The focus of regional calls have a local nature, both in terms of priorities and partners involved, but they will be incorporated as part of KIX’s overall effort to generate and mobilize knowledge to facilitate informed debates.