Eligibility Criteria

SEED welcomes innovative ideas from any enterprise in a developing country or country in transition, which is working in partnership with others to generate economic, environmental and social benefits. SEED's independent International Jury of experts selects Award Winners, those enterprises that have the greatest promise of making substantial improvements in poverty eradication and environmental sustainability while contributing to a greener economy. We request all potential proposals to carefully read our criteria before completing an application. Click on the points below for more information.

Proposals which do not fulfil ALL the eligibility criteria below should not be submitted.

SEED Award Winners must:

a) demonstrate entrepreneurship and innovation

The activities covered by the enterprise described in the application should be entrepreneurial and innovative, for example delivering new services to communities locally or regionally, bringing a new product to market, or developing a new, effective and financially sustainable way of delivering environmental and social benefits.

b) deliver economic, social and environmental benefits

SEED expects applications from enterprises working in many different sectors. Any application will be considered as long as it fulfils these eligibility criteria and therefore has the potential to contribute towards Triple Bottom Line (TBL) impacts, which means enterprise should integrate economic, social and environmental aspects into the business model. SEED is looking for enterprise that can make a significant contribution to sustainable development by delivering:

  • social benefits such as community organisation, empowerment and employment, health or education benefits, or access to essential services; and
  • environmental benefits such as reduced carbon emissions, waste or pollution, or protecting biodiversity and ecosystems; and
  • economic benefits including income generation to their partners and contributing towards local economic development.

SEED will also be looking at the integration of components that respect and advance gender equity and balance.

c) have the intention and potential to become financially sustainable

Applicants should be able to explain how the enterprise will be financially viable in the long term; it should have a sound business rationale. SEED can help winners to develop their ideas but a draft business plan should be already in place.

d) be a partnership between different stakeholder groups

SEED is looking for sustainable development solutions, which are created through different types of organisations or stakeholders working together in partnership. To be eligible, this means the enterprise must involve at least three different partners (including main applicant), from different stakeholder groups, which have already agreed to work together. Partners can be any international/national organisation, investor, research institute, supplier, governmental bodies/agencies, NGOs, other social enterprise, development organisation etc.

e) be locally-driven or locally-led

Local partner/s should be fully engaged in and have the prospect of benefitting from the enterprise, which should reflect the expertise, interests, and commitments of the local communities.

f) have potential for scale up or significant replication

The partners should have ambitions for growth and strong potential for increased impact on the ground, either through growth of the enterprise and/or replication elsewhere. Award winners usually also have the potential to serve as inspiration to others. The needs of the enterprise should fit well with the kinds of support SEED can offer.

g) be in the early stages of implementation

The enterprise has to be in the set-up phase and in the early stages of implementation. There should be proof of concept with evidence of some early impact.

SEED seeks applications that reflect innovative, forward-thinking, and realistic ideas for new products and services. Enterprises, which are currently being formed and are in the early stages of implementation are eligible for the SEED Award. Partners should have agreed in principle to work together, even if there are no formal agreements yet in place. It is of interest for the SEED Award whether enterprises have already attracted partial or full funding. The main aim of SEED and its partners is to assist with the difficult transition from start-up to establishment.

The enterprise should have a draft business plan, but will only be asked to submit the plan if shortlisted. Winning enterprises will demonstrate a good business rationale and give strong indications of significant economic, environmental and social benefits in the future.

h) meet country-specific requirements

The enterprise's activities must be taking place in and benefiting communities in a country which is eligible for the 2018 SEED Low Carbon Awards. Eligible countries are, Colombia, India, Tanyania, Thailand and Uganda.

If you meet all above mentioned criteria then apply for the 2018 SEED Low Carbon Awards online or download PDF application form and send us the completed form to seedawards2018@seed.uno

Call for applications for the 2018 SEED Low Carbon Awards are open until 03 April 2018.


For any queries, please contact SEED Team at seedawards2018@seed.uno  or contact  by phone (+49 89 248830714) or fax (+49 89 248830770)

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