Water articles are written by ADB staff and external contributors on various water issues, reforms, and good practices.

Pilot and Demonstration Activities: Big Ideas Tested on a Smaller Scale

Innovative ideas, technologies, approaches and methodologies can improve the delivery of water services and management of water resources. But innovative ideas do not always guarantee successful results on the first try. ADB's pilot and demonstration activities (PDAs) provide Village consultation forum for opportunities for initially testing wetland conservation and and improving such ideas on a rehabilitation of Nakhon Nayok subsmaller scale. basin in Thailand. PDA SNAPSHOT Since 2002, ADB has offered local governments, communities, and nongovernment organizations the opportunity to test their ideas for water innovations on a small scale. ADB does this through its pilot and demonstration activity facility. The idea is to have these innovations ultimately replicated on a larger scale, or mainstreamed into larger projects. To date, ADB has approved 31 projects worth $1.5 million, with each PDA receiving a grant of approximately $50,000; 19 of the PDAs have been completed. PDAs have been proposed and approved in every subregion of Asia and the Pacific, and majority was implemented in Southeast Asia and South Asia. The subject of PDAs varies widely, but many dealt with institutional and policy reforms and public awareness. The other PDAs focused on women, the poor, and technology. Sometimes the PDA involves technology or approaches tested elsewhere but needing to be tested in a specific location, or those involving nuances. Certainly, wastewater treatment plants are no innovation. And the principles of integrated water resource management have been around for decades. Yet the PDA fund supported two such projects recently because they brought the tested innovations to new contexts. FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS Find out if your ideas qualify for a PDA grant. Here are answers to frequently asked questions about PDAs. Which ideas qualify? Proposed projects should: Focus on freshwater resources and/or freshwater services. Be implementable within 12 months or less. Involve a request of US$50,000 financial assistance. Not duplicate ongoing or pipelined activity in ADB's developing member countries (DMCs). Be directly relevant to the "sector outcomes" cited in ADB's Country Partnership Strategy for the country concerned.

Which ideas would not qualify? Projects wholly comprising workshops and conferences or training/course materials development Projects wholly focused on capacity building Activities that would typically be included in an ADB technical assistance or loan-funded project What kind of assistance would approved projects get? Approved projects will be allotted about $50,000 funding assistance. These funds can be used for, among others, consultant services in developing, validating and demonstrating new approaches, and field-based applied research and demonstration by local stakeholders, including NGOs.

For approved proposals, ADB will request for government concurrence. In the meantime, the Water Fund Manager prepares a Letter of Agreement (LOA) to be signed by ADB and the executing agency. Implementing parties can Training community leaders to become begin operations upon hygiene promoters —about 75 community receipt of all required documents. The funds will leaders from 29 villages participated in the training courses in Nantai Island, PRC. be released based on the Read the PDA payment schedule and requirements defined in the LOA. RELATED LINKS Pilot and Demonstration Activities Guidelines for Submission of Proposals

A decentralized wastewater treatment plant in the Philippine town of Liloan cleaned the coastal waters, bringing hopes of a thriving tourism industry and a prosperous economy. Read the PDA

How will proposals be reviewed? The proposals will be reviewed according to its technical merits, extent and nature of proposed innovation, and potential for replication. Who can apply? NGOs, academic institutions, community associations, or other development partners in an ADB DMC A professional staff member of an ADB regional department (In the case of non-ADB proposals, a PDA activity officer from ADB staff will be assigned to oversee the project.) How should proposals be submitted? Proposals should use the standard "Request for Support Form." Download form. E-mail proposals to the Water Fund Manager. Who will evaluate the proposals? The Water Fund Manager, with assistance from the ADB’s Water Team, will review proposals on their eligibility, assist in their development, and recommend their consideration to the PDA Advisory Panel for “no objection.” What are the next steps upon submission of the proposal? Proponents will be informed in writing whether the project is approved for funding or not.

*This article was first published online at ADB's Water for All website in May 2007: