International Climate Initiative (IKI)

Climate Objective
Sectors and Themes
Disaster Risk Reduction
Forestry and Land Use
Industry and Infrastructure
Nature-based Solutions and Ecosystem Services
Oceans and Coasts
Rural Development
Waste Management
Type of Support Provider
Type of Recipient
Public entity at the national level
Public entity at the sub-national level
Public entity at the regional level
International organization
Non-profit or civil society organization
Private sector
Community-level organization
Fund Size

Almost 6 billion euros

Trustee or Administrator
German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB)
Contact Information
East Asia and Pacific
Europe and Central Asia
Middle East and North Africa
North America
South Asia
Sub-Saharan Africa

The IKI is a key element of Germany’s climate financing and the funding commitments in the framework of the Convention on Biological Diversity. The Initiative places clear emphasis on climate change mitigation, adaption to the impacts of climate change and the protection of biological diversity. The IKI aims to:

  1. Promote a climate-friendly economy by supporting partner countries in establishing a climate-friendly economic structure that prevents climate-damaging greenhouse gas emissions;
  2. Promote measures for climate change adaptation by supporting appropriate national programmes in selected partner countries that are especially vulnerable to climate change;
  3. Promote and finance measures for preservation and sustainable use of carbon reservoirs/Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD).

IKI supports through two main funding pillars: the thematic and the country-specific selection procedures. Both procedures use idea competitions to select innovative projects. This approach ensures that the best ideas and concepts will be implemented and that the diversity of the implementing partners grows. In addition to selecting projects from the ideas competitions, IKI also offers Small and Medium Grants for small-scale projects.

Support Provider


Purpose of Support
Project and program implementation
Financial Instruments Offered
Monitoring and Reporting Procedures

Recipients of project funding must report on the progress of their project to the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB) at regular intervals. Interim reports must be submitted to the Programme Office of the International Climate Initiative (IKI) by 30 April. The period covered by these reports is to 31 December of the previous year. If a project has ended, a final report must be submitted to the IKI Programme Office within six months. This consists of a status report and a financial report. For more information on the provisions laid down in the IKI grant agreements and the information on support for projects under the International Climate Initiative of the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, and Nuclear Safety, reference this page.

Organizational and Decision Making Structure

All funding decisions on projects are made by the BMU. The IKI works closely with GIZ and KfW, two organisations contracted by the German government to perform development cooperation tasks. Administration of the IKI is carried out by a programme office located at GIZ, and supported by additional personnel capacity from KfW. An international advisory group, of up to 30 members, offers strategic support to the practical work undertaken by the IKI. The international advisory panel is made up of experts from governments, academia, non-governmental organisations, companies, financial markets and international financial institutions. Meeting once every year, the Group advises the IKI on the identification of project types, activity areas and ways to harness potential for cooperation and synergy. In addition, the panel debates the future direction of the IKI and discusses best practice.

Eligibility Criteria

Participation in the ideas competition of IKI Thematic Calls is open to the following organisations:

  • Non-governmental organisations; 
  • Universities and research institutions; 
  • International intergovernmental organisations and institutions such as development banks;
  • United Nations organisations and programmes;
  • Implementing organisations of the Federal Republic of Germany;
  • Commercial enterprises. 
  • Partner country governments and individuals cannot participate in the ideas competition.
Eligible Countries and Geographic Regions
East Asia and Pacific
Europe and Central Asia
Latin America and Caribbean
Middle East and North Africa
North America
South Asia
Sub-Saharan Africa
Information on how to

The project selection procedure is in two phases. In the first phase (outline phase), interested implementing organisations are invited to submit project outlines within the framework of an ideas competition. The three ministries involved in the IKI usually select one or two project outlines per thematic priority from all submissions. In the second phase (proposal phase), the organisations whose project outlines have been selected (from the first phase), are invited to submit a detailed proposal.

Phase 1: outline phase
The outline phase takes place in two steps. After you submitted an outline to an ideas competition, it will first be checked to see whether it meets the minimum requirements. In case it is also one of the most promising project ideas, your idea will be shortlisted. Based on the IKI selection criteria, your outline is then reviewed in depth internally and externally by independent experts. Based on the review results and the budget available, the responsible ministries will select project outlines to be pursued further in the second phase. All participants will be informed in writing about the result of the review of their outline.

Phase 2: proposal phase
After you submitted an outline as part of an ideas competition and it is selected in the review process, then it is at the second stage in the selection process: the proposal phase.

As the applicant submitting the selected project outline, you will receive at the beginning of this phase a written request to submit a detailed project proposal. We recommend including a preparation phase to work on your detailed proposal.

With the benefit of a preparation phase, projects can be optimally adjusted to local circumstances in the countries of implementation, the data required for detailed planning can be procured and a tailor-made support strategy can be developed. The expenditures incurred in the preparation phase is eligible for funding as part of the overall project budget.

Further information including key requirements and the essential templates can be found on this information page on the proposal phase for the thematic calls.

Once the IKI Office at Zukunft – Umwelt – Gesellschaft gGmbH (ZUG) has reviewed the detailed project proposal, a final decision will be made as to funding/project commissioning. The implementation phase can then starts, which runs for up to eight years.