Knowledge Management Fund

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    Knowledge Platform Security and Rule of Law
    Mobility Incoming
    Mobility Outgoing
    Travel Grants
    There are four decision dates throughout the year, with corresponding submission deadlines. Applications submitted before a submission deadline will be given a decision no later than the next decision date. Any applications submitted after the submission deadline will be assessed and given a decision on the decision date - i.e. an application submitted on 21 June will be given a decision on 8 July.
    Social sciences
    First Stage Researcher (R1) (Up to the point of PhD)
    Recognised Researcher (R2) (PhD holders or equivalent who are not yet fully independent)
    Established Researcher (R3) (Researchers who have developed a level of independence)
    Leading Researcher (R4) (Researchers leading their research area or field)



The Knowledge Management Fund (KMF) is the Knowledge Platform’s fund to support activities arising from its network. The small-scale grants awarded by the Fund offer a low barrier to entry for pioneering, agile and experimental proposals. The aim of the Fund is to improve policies and programs, particularly in Fragile and Conflict-Affected Settings (FCAS), by diversifying thinking and evidence in the Security & Rule of Law (SRoL) field.

The KMF is a €300,000 annual fund that awards grants of up to €15,000 for events, research ideas and innovative projects that contribute to high-quality knowledge and learning in the SRoL field, and the subsequent use of that knowledge and learning in programming and policy.

The 2019 KMF thematic headlines are Change and Learning Processes and Examining and Improving Policy. Each year, the Secretariat sets these headlines following consultation with the KPSRL, the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA), and the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research–Science for Global Development (NWO-WOTRO). The thematic headlines help applicants to the KMF focus on outcomes, and they reflect the fund’s specific added value: addressing emerging priority areas and feeding research outcomes and original ideas into programming and policies. They are purposefully broad to leave as much scope as possible for applicants to generate knowledge in their specialist thematic and geographic areas.

The KMF is divided into three strands. The three strands are Events, Research and Innovation. This helps applicants maintain focus on the method by which they try to achieve their aim of producing original insights to improve the quality and use of knowledge in programming and policy.


What is funded

In 2019, the KMF is changing its focus: away from topic-based headlines (such as human security or transitional justice) to focus more on how and why knowledge is generated and used. This will help projects feed more directly into the knowledge-brokering role of the Secretariat. It will also build on learning from programs that is practically useful for practitioners and policymakers.

This new focus acknowledges the diversity of security and rule of law expertise within our network, and offers applicants to the KMF the flexibility to develop ideas that tackle urgent and emerging issues, based on their knowledge of the many dimensions of fragile contexts.

Applicants’ submissions will be assessed on their alignment with the chosen headline. Applicants may freely choose their topical focus within the security and rule of law (SRoL) field. This could include, but is not limited to: human security, justice and security sector reform, informal justice, access to justice, transitional justice, political governance, informal and local governance, and political representation.

Please read the explanation for the two headlines below carefully, as each has different requirements. Not every topic within the security and rule of law field will automatically be relevant for each headline. Each applicant will need to justify their choice of topic and its relevance to a specific headline in their proposals.


1.Change and Learning Processes

This headline explores how change and learning happens in the field of SRoL. Specifically, this theme will help shed light on the exact mechanisms by which people, organizations and institutions working on SRoL change and learn. This can be in a number of ways: within programs, through feedback loops between practice and policymaking, and how learning and knowledge that has been gained or generated is identified and used. Example areas for investigation might include (but are not limited to):

  • how people, organizations and institutions practically diverge from established and conventional practices. 

  • how research methods and partnerships adapt more effectively to fragile contexts. 

  • how we can combine qualitative and quantitative approaches in measuring change.  

  • why barriers exist to more adaptive programming approaches and what can be done to overcome them or use the opportunities that do exist.

Projects under this headline should produce knowledge about change and learning processes relevant for and shareable with the wider KPSRL community.


2.Examining and Improving Policy


There is an increasing focus on and demand for evidence and research in policymaking, including in the field of SRoL. While new evidence is being generated every day, there are still many evidence gaps on the assumptions that underpin policy within the SRoL field. These might include the assumed positive effect of particular sectors, such as the private sector, on peace and stability, or the assumed positive impact of specific policies. There are also policy gaps rather than evidence gaps. This headline aims to explore these issues by focusing on the SRoL policies of programming and policy actors. Projects under this headline could focus on (but are not limited to):

  • generating new evidence or identifying ‘what works’  within the SRoL field, with the aim of informing policy 

  • helping programming and policy actors develop and improve their SRoL policies
  • disseminating existing evidence to a wider policy and practice audience 

  • measuring the impact of policies 

  • testing the quality of evidence available for policymakers and practitioners 

Projects under this headline should identify a specific policy (gap) or policy area of a SRoL programming or policy actor where possible, and produce findings relevant for the wider KPSRL community.

Aims and focus

  • The KMF is particularly interested in bringing wider and more diverse perspectives and sources of evidence into SRoL policy and programming.
  • Applications are open to any consortium or individual with the ambition to improve policies, programs or knowledge in the field of security and rule of law in fragile and conflict affected settings. Think-tanks, (I)NGOs, academics, universities, private sector organizations, government institutions, journalists, independent researchers or innovators, data specialists, learning experts, and PhD candidates are all welcome to submit proposals.
  • Partnerships between individuals and organizations and across the range of sectors within our network are highly encouraged. In particular, the KMF welcomes partnerships that link people from different regions of the globe.
  • Preference is given to those projects focused on the Dutch MFA policy priority regions: the Middle East and North Africa, the Horn of Africa and the Sahel.
  • The KMF will only fund costs that are directly attributable to the project, up to €15,000. All costs – especially salaries, personnel and fee days – must be substantiated and justified. The KMF will not cover overheads or any expenses that fall outside the budget agreed in the signed contract. All applicants must contribute an additional 20% to the funds sought. Please see below and the budget template for the full budget guidelines and requirements.



Project strands

The KMF is made up of three strands to which you may apply: Events, Research, and Innovation. Each strand funds different kinds of activities and initiatives that, collectively, aim to produce original insights to help the KPSRL improve the quality and use of knowledge and learning in programming and policy. The KMF is interested in three dimensions of knowledge: production, dissemination, and use. Each application must:

  • generate new research – it fills gaps where there is insufficient knowledge or expertise available
  • link existing knowledge and actors – it addresses a lack of awareness or understanding of existing knowledge
  • break down the barriers for learning and change within or between people, institutions and organizations – it addresses use of what knowledge and learning already exists, which is either ignored or not made available to policymakers and programmers.



In 2019, the KMF application process opens on 15 March 2019. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis from 15 March until 15 November 2019. There are four decision dates throughout the year, with corresponding submission deadlines. Applications submitted before a submission deadline will be given a decision no later than the next decision date. Any applications submitted after the submission deadline will be assessed and given a decision on the decision date - i.e. an application submitted on 21 June will be given a decision on 8 July. The dates are listed below:


  1. Submission Deadline: 26 April / Decision Date: 13 May
  2. Submission Deadline: 21 June / Decision Date: 8 July
  3. Submission Deadline: 13 September / Decision Date: 30 September
  4. Submission Deadline: 15 November / Decision Date: 2 December


All applications must:

  • Include a prospective budget not to exceed €15,000, with 20% co-funding committed, that complies with all guidelines and requirements as detailed in the budget template
  • Begin within 6 weeks of funds being awarded, with a running time not exceeding 6 months

Due to the amount of applications received, applications that do not meet the eligibility criteria will not be assessed. If you have any questions regarding your application’s eligibility please contact KMF@kpsrl.org before submission.

Assessment Criteria

All applications should:

  • Explain how the project aligns with one of the Platform’s Thematic Headlines
  • Describe the specific knowledge and/or capacity gap to be addressed, and argue its urgency
  • Describe how the project will be both unique and applicable to the SRoL field
  • Demonstrate  a clear benefit to the larger Platform community through identifying a minimum of two accessible deliverables
  • Clearly define the change sought and strategy to effect that change
  • Display the ambition to build upon proposed project in the future
  • Have an original idea or approach


The responsibility for the funding offers published on this website, including the funding description, lies entirely with the publishing institutions. The application is handled uniquely by the employer, who is also fully responsible for the recruitment and selection processes.