Call for Research Proposals (Tech Coalition Safe Online Research Fund)
Deadline: 11 April 2021
About this Call for Research Proposals
The Tech Coalition Safe Online Research Fund
End Violence and the Technology Coalition have launched the Tech Coalition Safe Online Research Fund to tackle online child sexual exploitation and abuse (CSEA). From now until 11 April 2021, we are seeking proposals for research that will expand knowledge of online CSEA and explore the most effective measures for preventing it. Winning proposals will be awarded grants from $20,000 to $250,000.
We are interested in innovative research that can impact relevant policy and product development, with a priority given to research that can help inform the technology industry’s approach to combating online CSEA. This collaboration is part of the Technology Coalition’s Project Protect. Project Protect seeks to prevent and eradicate online CSEA through technology innovation, collective action, research, knowledge sharing, and increased accountability. This fund is an essential part of that process, supporting actionable research that will lead to real, lasting change for children’s digital safety.
End Violence will support the Tech Coalition Safe Online Research Fund while building on four years of work in the Safe Online space. Since our inception in 2016, End Violence has invested USD$44 million in 52 projects focused on preventing and eliminating online CSEA, reaching nearly 70 countries across the world.
The Tech Coalition Safe Online Research Fund will advance the world’s understanding of online child sexual exploitation and abuse (CSEA). $800,000 will be used to fund this research, with $20,000 to $250,000 allocated to each grant. Eligible research for this call will deliver actionable insights that contribute to practitioner understanding of online CSEA, with a priority on technology industry practice across four specific areas. We seek to fund academic and/or applied research which may draw from a range of quantitative, qualitative or mixed methods. Research should increase our understanding and provide the application of:
- Efficacy and impact of online CSEA deterrence and prevention interventions, including an understanding of offender pathways and children’s digital experiences. This includes increasing the evidence base for effective, actionable industry reporting to and investigation by the appropriate authorities; impactful education and outreach strategies; and strengthening the capacity of all stakeholders in preventing, disrupting and responding to online CSEA.
- Evolving technology may present new or exacerbate existing threats by contributing to changes in offender or children’s behaviour or creating new challenges and risks. Research could provide solutions to respond to implications of evolving technology, for example, abuse detection in encrypted environments or real-time reporting in live streams. This area of focus also includes potential solutions and opportunities offered by technology developments for risk mitigation and better tools and strategies around behavioural interventions.
- Well-being, collaboration and support for survivors, improving well-being and resilience for staff such as content moderators and others, as well as enhancing collaboration among all sectors working to end online CSEA.
- Policy and legal considerations are critical to shaping online CSEA deterrence and response. In this channel, research could include assessment of policy implementation over time and upstream interventions such as public health or safety-by-design approaches; addressing age-appropriate design and experiences; and understanding how privacy and ensuring children’s rights intersect in the fight against CSEA
IF YOUR WORK IS ALIGNED WITH OUR GENERAL CRITERIA ABOVE, WE WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU!
Winning proposals will be awarded grants from US$20K to US$250K. End Violence encourages applications that fall anywhere within this range, though there is more limited opportunity for larger funding amounts. Most significantly, proposals will be evaluated for alignment of the scope and activities outlined with the proposed budget. Payment will be made to the applicant’s institution, and in the case of a consortium, to the main grantee organisation. Grantees’ instalments are determined based on their proposed budgets, with 1-2 instalments depending on project duration and budget. Indirect costs are limited to 7% for grants.
Review the full Request for Proposals (RfP), read over the FAQs, and apply below. You can review the full application, which is available for download, to develop your proposal before beginning the application form. Please note that for applications to be reviewed, you must apply via the below online form. We will not be accepting applications over email or mail.
End Violence and the Technology Coalition invite non-profit organisations (i.e. research institutes and academic institutions, civil society organisations (CSOs), non-governmental organisations (NGOs), international organisations) to respond to this Request for Proposals (RfP).
Consortia are also encouraged to apply; however, the organisation submitting the application will be considered the main grantee and must be a non-profit organisation (i.e. research institutes and academic institutions, CSOs, NGOs, and international organisations), bearing all the contractual responsibilities vis-à-vis End Violence.
Only entities that fulfil these mandatory requirements will be considered eligible:
- legally registered non-profit entity
- the research addresses one or more of the four areas of the 2021 Open Call
- all funding will be directed to an institution, not to individuals
- the research project lead may submit one proposal
- at minimum, the applicant organisation should have demonstrated relevant prior expertise and/or research experience
- the organisation has a safeguarding policy in place or is willing to develop a policy *
*Researchers are also responsible for obtaining ethical approval for their proposed project, such as approval from a university’s ethics/ institutional review board (IRB) or when not available, include a detailed description of their ethics policy (e.g. embedding a UNICEF Procedure for Ethical Standards in Research in the research design) which will be evaluated carefully as a part of the criteria for selection.
Please note that if you are selected for a Grant award, your organisation will be asked to submit two years of the latest financial audit reports. If your organisation does not have this readily available, a description of why audits are not available and further financial documentation will be requested for the required due diligence by End Violence. As End Violence is hosted administratively by UNICEF, organisations without a risk rating within UNICEF’s financial management system may be required to undergo a financial micro-assessment during the grant period.
Proposal applications must be submitted through the online form.
All submissions must be made in English. Interested entities that meet the eligibility criteria are required to complete and submit the RfP Application form online and provide the information and supporting documents indicated in the form.
Before you do so, please ensure you have:
- Reviewed the full Request for Proposals here, and filled out any necessary supplemental items, including the End Violence project budget annex, which can be found on the orange sidebar of this webpage to the right. For your reference, you can access a downloadable version of the application here to use while developing your proposal. Please note that you must submit your application through the online form.
- Reviewed the FAQs tab of this webpage, and if necessary, submit your own questions through this FAQ form. AAnswers to all questions submitted will be shared publicly, and regularly updated on the FAQs tab of this webpage.
- Reviewed the RfP’s Terms and Conditions.
Proposals will be reviewed after the close of the call. The last day for submissions of applications is 11 April 2021 at 11:59 PM EST.
Only shortlisted applicants will be contacted and may be requested to provide additional clarification, as applicable. End Violence may come back to applicants with feedback and/or requests to reshape or rescope their proposal if needed.
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