European AI Fund
Since the Fund was publicly announced in September 2020, it launched two funding initiatives: an open call for targeted core funding, as well as a Tech and Covid-19 research grant.
Following the open call, over the next twelve to eighteen months, grants will support sixteen organisations to shape and influence public and policy debates in Europe around Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Automated Decision Making (ADM) for a total budget of 1.55 million euros. The objective is two-fold: to strengthen the advocacy and policy capacity of those who already work on AI/ADM, and to bring in new voices to the debate, especially those that are working on issues affected by AI/ADM.
With the tech and Covid grants, six organisations are supported to conduct research that monitors, documents and critically analyses the role that data, ADM, and technology more broadly plays in Europe’s ongoing tech response to the pandemic. The results of those highly topical researches will be shared widely by the Fund and its partners during the course of this year.
A healthy digital public sphere is a vital element of a functioning democracy, especially since a lot of our activity has moved online due to the pandemic. Based on the lessons learnt and outcomes of its first granting period on this issue, consultations with a wide range of field experts and grantee partners, and the potential of the current legislative proposals at the EU level to create change, Civitates will focus its efforts on supporting and strengthening civil society advocates for working towards a healthy digital public sphere. The initial grant budget is € 1.8 million for the next 3 years.
Under this line of work, Civitates will support a cohort of civil society organisations that:
- advocate for policy approaches towards a healthy digital public sphere
- build the capacity and constituency of civil society to engage in the debate and address the current, emerging, and future challenges of the digital public sphere.
Civitates is also working closely with the European AI Fund, building on the existing complementarities and synergies.
On 21 April 2021, the European Programme for Integration and Migration (EPIM) and the Diversity, Migration and Integration (DMI) Thematic Network of the European Foundation Centre jointly organised a learning session on closing the representation gap for people with lived migration experience in public and policy advocacy on migration issues.
Compared to other contexts and sectors where participation in policy-making of people with lived experience is more advanced, the representation and participation of people with a lived experience in the migration sector still face significant barriers, despite an increased momentum on the subject.
Under Chatham House rules, more than 50 private funders and leaders with lived migration experience jointly unpacked root causes behind the representation gap and discussed good practices and concrete steps to overcome existing barriers. The event culminated in the development of a set of recommendations to funders, which were shared widely within the EPIM and DMI Network. EPIM and DMI will continue to convene and facilitate a space for further discussions and collaboration among funders to close the gap in representation and leadership of people with lived experience in policy and advocacy work.
The Evaluation Fund
As the Evaluation Fund is sunsetting at the end of 2021, it is putting into place a closing strategy that will encompass the learning, legacy, and sustainability of over a decade of operation.
This will include retrospectively analysing supported studies and their contribution to the field of violence prevention (especially in connection to the INSPIRE framework - seven strategies for ending violence against children), as well as an internal review of operations that will culminate in a do’s and don’ts guide for donors wishing to establish stand-alone evaluation funds. To help support the dissemination of past and current studies, a variety of community products will be developed in the coming months to collect and share the evidence that has been generated.
Aligned with its theory of change, JAFOWA has commissioned the association ‘Quartiers du Monde’ to deepen the gender approach of JAFOWA’s partner farmers’ organizations in Burkina and Senegal. The intersectional gender approach promoted by the association aims at improving the social fabric through popular education. Even if JAFOWA partners have been working on gender issues, the gender dimension is not always part of their strategy or governance. The objective is to draw a gender audit after discussions with the stakeholders of the JAFOWA partners, and then propose a tailored pathway to each organization to elaborate its own gender action plan.
In March 2021, TransForm launched its first call for the Changemakers Forum for ICC, which seeks interested organisations, collaboratives or networks leading initiatives that align with Integrated Community Care’s (ICC) vision and principles to join a learning community that is invested in taking this approach forward.
Selected initiatives from across Europe and Canada will join a Changemakers Forum that will guide and support the TransForm coalition and its partners in identifying priorities and activities to advance to the field of integrated community care. This forum will serve as an international advisory group and learning community that will connect participants with stakeholders across Europe and Canada and will be supported through workshops designed by and tailored to the interests, priorities and needs of participants. Selection is underway and successful applicants will be informed in early July 2021.