The UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are a call to action for all countries, in partnership, to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all. They address global challenges, including poverty, inequality, climate change, environmental degradation, peace and justice. 

Achieving the SDGs lies at the heart of Ireland’s international development policy, A Better World, as well as being part of SFI’s strategy, Shaping our Future, to deliver tangible benefits for society. With these common goals, Irish Aid (Department of Foreign Affairs) entered a partnership with SFI in 2021 to establish the SDG Challenge.  

The SDG Challenge seeks to support diverse, transdisciplinary teams to develop transformative, sustainable solutions that will contribute to addressing development challenges under the UN SDGs in countries where Irish Aid works.  

Funding is available for collaborative research teams based in eligible research institutions in Ireland and partner countries. Successful teams will be awarded up to €300k and will work through a series of phases to develop their idea. An overall prize award of €1M will be available to the team that demonstrates the highest potential for transformative impact.

In this second call, SFI and Irish Aid are seeking solutions that contribute to SDG 13: Climate Action, and related goals and targets. Recognising the interconnectedness between climate, biodiversity and the environment, the challenge theme also encompasses SDG 14: Life below water and SDG 15: Life on land. Solutions must demonstrate context-specific impact in one of the eligible partner countries, but applicants are also encouraged to consider shared challenges where solutions may have wider impact.

Please refer to the call document for full details.