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Evaluation Criteria: Young People's Sexual and Reproductive Health

The UN Innovation Principles

UNFPA has endorsed the UN Innovation Principles. Throughout the Challenge, innovators can and should look to these principles as guidance for their design and implementation. 

How do I become a Top Idea?

There are two stages to UNFPA’s evaluation process. Ideas that meet the basic eligibility criteria will make the Shortlist. When selecting our Top Ideas, we’ll dig a little deeper and consider the quality and and readiness of the ideas from the Shortlist, and whether it is a new and desirable approach. 

Stage 1: Shortlisted Ideas 


Understanding: Shortlisted Ideas show an understanding of the context of the proposed solution, using a human-centered design approach to tackling the Challenge Question;

Clarity: Shortlisted Ideas clearly articulate how the solution addresses sexual and reproductive health for young people (ages 10-24); and 

Potential for Impact: Shortlisted Ideas are backed by available analytical/clinical/programming evidence for improved sexual and reproductive health. 


Targeted: Shortlisted Ideas directly improve the sexual and reproductive health of young people (and can specify a subgroup(s) of adolescents in particular need, e.g., married adolescent girls, out-of-school adolescents, youth with disabilities, etc.), by engaging adolescents (ages 10-19), youth (ages 15-24), health care providers, and the community in which they operate;

Innovative: Shortlisted Ideas takes a new approach to a problem, or uses an existing approach in a new way.

Stage 2: Top Ideas 

We have two levels of top ideas based on readiness to scale:

Promising Ideas (Level #1): Early stage ideas that are new innovations by new innovators, that have identified and started to acquire users (or clients), require additional refinement, and demonstrate limited previous funding.  

Ideas Ready to Scale (Level #2): Later stage ideas that have been prototyped and have a proof of concept, have demonstrated and acceptability among the end user(s) of the proposed idea, and have shown credible results to improve the sexual and reproductive health among the target beneficiaries. Additionally, Level 2 Ideas and may have already received previous funding. 

All Top Ideas 


Collaboration: Top Ideas engage and work with adolescents and youth, demonstrate a deep understanding of their issues and needs, and incorporate their input;

Initial Testing: Top Ideas share the low fidelity tests or prototypes that were conducted, the pilots launched, what was learned from the feedback, and credible results to support further refinement or implementation;

Metrics & Measurement: Top Ideas use key metrics  to track and assess the status of the project and how the project team has used the resulting data to inform the fail fast iterative approach to innovation; and

Clear Planning: Top Ideas are supported by a realistic timeline, plan, and resource needs to bring the proposed project to fruition. 


Outcome Driven: Top Ideas use data to explain the direct ways in which the idea will improve the long-term sexual and reproductive health of adolescents and youth;

Responsive: Open innovation involves being willing to collaborate and design with both a community of innovators and the adolescents and youth for whom the proposed solution would benefit. This can take many forms but includes, showing improvement in response to feedback throughout the Challenge, as well as, demonstrating responsiveness to the needs and level of effort required by implementing partners and broader stakeholders to carry forward the proposed solution; and

Scalable: Top Ideas demonstrates an ability to expand the coverage of service, grow in both reach and impact, and be sustainable. 

Top Ideas will:

  • be part of a cohort of top innovative organizations helping to solve pressing issues.
  • receive ongoing partnership support from the UNFPA Innovation Fund, including potential connection to other funder networks, and PR exposure.