How to Apply


Step 1

Read DIV’s addendum under the Broad Agency Announcement and the Annual Program Statement, which extensively describes DIV’s evaluation criteria and provides complete guidance on how to create a strong application. Only applicants that demonstrate a full understanding of DIV’s evaluation criteria will be considered for funding.

Step 2

Select the stage at which you will apply. DIV invests in ideas across different stages of their development from proof-of-concept to widespread use. Stages are determined not by funding, but by how far their project is in its development and to what extent they have previously gathered evidence of its success. Should an applicant require more funding than is available at their appropriate stage, they are expected to fill funding gaps from sources outside of DIV.

Applicants can apply at any stage. 

  • Stage 1: establishes proof of concept and initial field testing
  • Stage 2: tests solutions, refines models, and positions solutions for scale (stage 1 criteria previously met with DIV or other support sources)
  • Stage 3: transitions proven solutions to scale for widespread use (criteria of stages 1 and 2 previously met with DIV or other support sources)

Step 3

Submit your application. Applicants will develop a ~5 page application that describes in detail the goals, outcomes, outputs and activities of the proposed project, as well as innovation’s cost-effectiveness, evidence of impact, and pathways to scale. Strong applications will demonstrate an in-depth understanding of the criteria stated in the Annual Program Statement.

Step 4

Applicants that meet DIV’s LOI evaluation criteria will be invited to a phone interview with DIV. Applicants will have the opportunity to pitch their proposal while DIV gets to know the applicant and gains a deeper understanding of the proposal. Supplemental application materials may be requested before or after the phone interview. Certain later stage applicants may be required to complete a full written application.

Step 5

Applicants will undergo a brief diligence process in coordination with DIV. This diligence process may include requests for supplemental materials, reference checks, coordination with additional partners, and collaborating to enhance or strengthen an innovation.

Step 6

Applicants that successfully complete each of the previous applications steps will be recommended for DIV funding. After final legal diligence has been completed, applicants will be notified of DIV’s funding decision. Applicants will be notified of their rejection or DIV's intent to award between 1 and 6 months after DIV receives the application.



Additional resources:


Apply to DIV

What We Look For

Annual Program Statement



Last updated: May 19, 2015

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