Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Irrigation & Mechanization Systems

Funding Agency:
US Agency for International Development

The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) is seeking applications for a Leader with Associates Cooperative Agreement from qualified entities to implement the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Irrigation & Mechanization Systems (ILIMS). Eligibility for this award is restricted to U.S. colleges and universities as defined under Section 296(d) of Title XII of the FAA.

In response to the 2007/2008 global food price spikes, the U.S. Government launched the Feed the Future (FTF) initiative to sustainably reduce global poverty and hunger, and to significantly increase global agricultural production to provide sufficient nutritious food for the growing world's population. Feed the Future’s results and critical contributions to the U.S. economy, security and leadership have garnered broad bipartisan support, culminating in the enactment of the Global Food Security Act (GFSA) in 2016 and its reauthorization in 2018 and 2022. The GFSA’s signature, top-line goal is to sustainably reduce global hunger, malnutrition and poverty.

The overall goal of this new IL is to improve mechanization systems and irrigation systems which are then adopted by producers and other stakeholders. This goal is supported by four key outcomes, each one an intermediate result and a pillar of scientific inquiry:

1. Assessment of suitability of various systems and improved targeting of technologies to producers.

2. Increased inclusive governance and intentional, inclusive design.

3. Strengthened inclusive market systems.

4. Strengthened stakeholder capacity and ability to apply evidence.

The objective of this program description is to procure a Management Entity (ME) to manage the Irrigation & Mechanization Systems Innovation Lab (ILIMS). The overarching goal of the Innovation Lab (IL), in line with the GFSS, is to reduce global hunger, malnutrition and poverty through science, technology and innovation.

There is a limit of one application per eligible institution. Interested applicants from within Duke should contact fundopps@duke.edu as early as possible.

Closing Date: Friday, August 4, 2023, 04:00 PM Washington, D.C. Time

Agency Website

Eligibility Requirements

This program is authorized under Title XII of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961, as amended. Applications must only be submitted by eligible U.S. colleges and universities as defined under Section 296(d) of Title XII of the Foreign Assistance Act, as amended.

Amount Description

USAID intends to award one (1) Leader with Associates (LWA) Award pursuant to this notice of funding opportunity. Subject to funding availability and at the discretion of the Agency, the Bureau for Resilience and Food Security (RFS) intends to provide $19 million in total USAID core funding over a five (5) year period. The ceiling for this program is up to $40 million. It is estimated that up to $3.0 million will be obligated to the Leader Award in the first year as leader funding from RFS, and up to $4.0 million per year thereafter, for a total of up to $19 million in leader funding from RFS. Actual funding amounts are subject to availability of funds.

Furthermore, pending demand and funds availability from USAID Missions and other Bureaus or OUs, USAID will allow up to an additional $21 million as a pool for potential Associate Awards and buy-ins during the life of the project to the holder of the Leader Award. The competition under this NOFO covers both the Leader Award and all subsequent Associate Awards and buy-ins. USAID reserves the right to fund any one or none of the applications submitted.

Funding Type





Engineering and Physical Sciences
Environmental & Life Sciences
International Opportunities
Social Sciences

External Deadline

August 4, 2023