E-Cubed Proposal Assessment Criteria

Below find the E-Cubed proposal assessment criteria. Scoring and feedback on each proposal is weighed against additional score(s) produced by advisory panelists. INEE collates scores, and conducts score moderation if necessary before sharing a shortlist with Dubai Cares who makes final funding decisions.

Dubai Cares considers education a human right and is committed to ensuring access to quality education for all children and youth globally. Dubai Cares is focused on investing in research that generates actionable evidence for EiE actors to better the education of children and youth in crisis contexts. 

The main goal of E-Cubed is to fund research that generates valid and reliable evidence which is openly accessible to international, regional, national, and/or community actors, and which is shared and translated in such a way so that these actors are able to act upon the research findings. 

Funding is NOT limited to robust RCTs or restricted to questions of “what works.” Rather, Dubai Cares seeks proposals that include rigorous methodologies relevant to the research proposed which could include research and questions of how and intervention works, why, and for whom.

For more information please see the E-Cubed FAQs.

Proposal Assessment Criteria 

Please note that each of the below sections are weighted equally.

Research Relevance & Rationale

  • The proposed research represents an original contribution to knowledge and/or practice in response to the particular needs and issues of the context on which it focuses. 
  • The proposed research demonstrates a clear and feasible research question, with relevant research objectives that link directly with a well-articulated research rationale. 
  • The proposal articulates assumptions, along with their theoretical foundations, and hypotheses (where relevant). 
  • The proposal presents a critical evaluation of existing research on the proposal topic. 
  • The proposal demonstrates its potential for contribution to the evidence base via a robust conceptual framework. 
  • The proposed research responds to a gap in EiE data or evidence.
  • The proposed research does not duplicate other ongoing efforts. *Research may intentionally replicate other studies to further learning, but should not duplicate existing or ongoing work.

Research Design & Methodology

  • The proposed methodology is well-rooted in literature and/or practice and is justified given the research question and objectives. 
  • The research design is well-articulated and suited to explore the constructs described in the conceptual framework. 
  • The proposal demonstrates a solid understanding of the data needed and the appropriate methods for data collection including any instruments and/or processes for instrument development and validation with an appropriate understanding of contextualization. 
  • The proposal articulates appropriate methods for data analysis, interpretation, and reporting. 
  • The proposal demonstrates a solid understanding of potential research limitations with an articulation of how these limitations impact data validity, reliability, and generalizability.

Research Partnerships & Ethics

  • If research is proposed in partnership, research partners have been and are engaged throughout all stages including identification of the research problem, design, validation of research tools, field work, analysis, and dissemination.
  • Where possible the proposal includes support for partner capacity development. 
  • The proposal addresses potential risks to human subjects.
  • Proposal identifies specific ethics review process that research will undergo, e.g. Institutional Review Board (IRB) review. 
  • Proposal takes into account issues of language and cultural sensitivities of conducting research in the context.

Research Outcomes

  • Research will produce a Global Public Good of relevance to the field in EiE. 
  • Proposal outlines a clear dissemination plan with a commitment to sharing evidence widely with donors, academics, policy-makers, and most importantly local stakeholders. 
  • Research outputs are made accessible through innovative publication and dissemination methods to ensure that evidence contributes to policy and implementation.
  • Research outputs and learning are promoted not only upon completion but throughout the research process.

Research Feasibility

  • The workplan appears to be feasible with proposed tasks and research objectives likely to be met in the specified timeframe taking into account context and partner capacity.
  • The workplan is relevant and demonstrates an appropriate and efficient allocation of capacity and resources.  
  • All activities mentioned in the research proposal are included in the budget. 
  • Proposal budget demonstrates a realistic consideration of methodology costs including all required resources for data collection, storage, clean up, and analysis.
  • Budget shows commitment to local capacity development.
  • Budget reflects realistic consideration of costs associated with reporting and dissemination throughout the research process.