Japan Social Development Fund

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The Japan Social Development Fund (JSDF) was established by the Government of Japan and the World Bank in June 2000 as an untied mechanism for providing direct assistance to the poorest and most vulnerable groups in eligible member countries of the World Bank Group. As of May 31, 2006, the Government of Japan had provided over US$250 million to the JSDF and almost 200 grants, amounting to more than US$238 million, had been approved.


Main purpose of the Fund

The main purposes of the JSDF are to:

  • Support innovative programs which directly respond to the needs of the poorest and most vulnerable groups in society;
  • Provide rapid and demonstrable benefits, which can be sustained, to the poorest and most vulnerable groups;
  • Build capacity, participation and empowerment of civil society, local communities and NGOs.

A similar fund, the Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction (JFPR), is being administered by the Asian Development Bank

Types of activities that are eligible under the JSDF

Two types of grants can be supported under the JSDF:

  1. "Project Grants" are for activities directly providing relief measures that address demand-driven poverty reduction needs and support innovative approaches; and
  2. "Capacity Building Grants" are for activities that strengthen service delivery at the grass roots level through learning by doing or expanding the capabilities or coverage of social fund-type institutions. They can also support measures nurturing positive interactions among local government, communities, interest groups, and non-governmental organizations in ways geared to generate substantive incremental benefits. Both types of grants must complement an on-going or future World Bank financed lending operation.

Average size of a JSDF grant

The size of a JSDF grant can range from US$200,000 to US$2 million for the JSDF regular program. In very exceptional cases, grants may go up to US$3 million. In these cases, prior clearance should be sought from the Trust Fund Operations (TFO) Department. International market rates should be used to cost the activities.

Duration of a JSDF grant

The duration of a JSDF grant cannot exceed four years from signature of the grant agreement.

When and how can one apply for a JSDF grant?

Invitations to submit JSDF grant proposals are usually issued three times a year. TFO sends out the invitation for submission of proposals which includes the guidelines for preparation of proposals, the list of eligible countries, guidelines for technical review and other useful information. JSDF applications are submitted through the Lotus Notes database.


Further Readings - References - Links

Community Based Urban Water Supply Management Project - Armenia


The JSDF page on the World Bank site

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