Frequently Asked Questions
- When will the Programme start?
It is expected that the Programme will be launched and open for applications in March 2018.
- Can part-time students of local higher education institutions (HEIs) enroll in the Programme?
Yes, the Programme welcomes full-time and part-time students as well as graduates in diploma, associate degree, degree or postgraduate degree programs offered by any higher education institution in Hong Kong to apply for enrollment.
- If I was graduated from an overseas university, can I also join this Programme?
Yes, you can also apply to participate in this Programme.
- You mentioned the Programme aims to nurture young people to become Social Innovation Implementers. Is there any age limit?
No, we don’t have any age limit. Any applicant who is currently studying or graduated from the local HEIs can apply irrespective of his / her age.
- What are the enrollment criteria to the Programme? Is there any screening / assessment / interview for applicants?
Application for enrollment is on first-come-first-served basis. While there are no specific criteria, we want the participants to be truly passionate and committed to learn and practise as social innovation implementers. As such, we shall require applicants to elaborate their objectives and expectations of joining this Programme in their Enrollment Forms.
- How long will Stage 1 training last?
Stage 1 training will be composed of a work camp and several training workshops. The workshops will normally be conducted in weekends and so we expect that it will last for around 2 months.
- What would I learn from the training workshops in Stage 1?
The workshops are structured and tailored specifically to enable the participants to understand the pertinent social issues / problems, to identify the opportunities and to formulate innovative ideas using design and technology to solve the social issues and support poverty relief. You may refer to the website (www.goodseed.hk) for further information.
- What will I learn to apply “Design & Technology” in my project / idea?
First of all, we will offer designated workshops on design thinking, design and technology for social innovation in Stage 1 of the Programme to help the participants to learn and understand how they can adopt design thinking and technology platform (e.g. ICT, mobile technology) in their respective projects. In addition, designers and mentors with business / technical background (e.g. mobile applications development) could be solicited to support the participants during the project implementation.
- How can I get funding support to my social innovation project?
Any participants completed at least 70% of the Stage 1 training can submit proposal to apply for funding support in the Idea Competition in Stage 2.
- Can I just apply for the funding support in Stage 2 without joining the Stage 1 training workshops?
No, you cannot just apply for funding in Stage 2 without joining Stage 1. However, you may apply for exemption from some training workshops in Stage 1 with proof or evidence that you have attained similar knowledge / skills / qualifications that will be offered by the training in Stage 1. The proof or evidence will be subject to satisfactory review.
- Can I submit more than one proposal in Stage 2?
Yes, you can submit more than one proposal with different ideas, different target groups / locations to serve, etc.
- Can I submit proposal with a team?
Yes, you can submit a proposal with a team. However, the programme staff will only communicate with the principal applicant of your team, and it is the principal applicant’s responsibility to convey any message and communications to his/ her team members.
- Can I join more than one team to submit multiple proposals in Stage 2?
Yes, you can join more than one team and submit more than one proposal with different ideas, different target groups / locations to serve, etc.
- Can I submit proposal on my own without any team member?
Yes, you can submit a proposal on your own. However, a team with multi-disciplinary background and expertise (e.g. business, design and technology) is preferred.
- Can I submit a proposal to apply for funding with a project which has been funded by other public funding scheme?
No, a project which has been funded by other public funding (e.g. The Enhancing Self-Reliance Through District Partnership Programme, The Enhancing Employment of People with Disabilities through Small Enterprise Project, etc.) will not be eligible to apply for the SIE Fund.
- What are the assessment criteria for the proposals submitted?
In general, each proposal submitted will be assessed with the following criteria:
- Creativity / Innovativeness
- Implementation and Feasibility
- Capabilities and Commitment of the Applicants
- Benefits to the Intended Target Groups to support poverty relief in Hong Kong
- Potential for Sustainable Social Impact
- Do I need to establish a company in order to receive the funding support?
It is not a must to set up a company to receive the funding. You only need to establish a designated bank account in order to receive the fund.
- Can I use the fund for my or my team’s salary?
The seed fund can only be used for necessary expenses related to the project implementation without paying for any labor or time costs of the team members.
- How the fund will be disbursed?
It is expected that your project shall be completed within a 9-month period and the $100,000 funding will be disbursed by instalments across the project period. Apart from the upfront payment, the disbursement of the other instalments shall be subject to satisfactory project progress and completion of pre-defined milestones.
- What kind of mentorship support will be offered in the Programme?
Mentors from different sectors including design, business and social sectors will be solicited to provide multi-disciplinary support to the participants, especially during the project implementation stage.
- Is there any post-funding support in the Programme?
Apart from mentorship support mentioned above, the Programme staff will follow up your funded project to review the progress and to help resolving any issues / difficulties that you may face during the project implementation. After the funding period, should the team wish to continue their project, we shall try to bridge them to other Intermediaries under SIE Fund / social incubators / investors for continual incubation and further funding support.
- Can I apply if I am a Hong Kong Polytechnic University employee?
Yes, only current employees from Institute for Entrepreneurship (ifE), Jockey Club Design Institute for Social Innovation (J.C.DISI) and PolyU Technology & Consultancy Company Limited (PTeC) are not allowed to participate in this programme in concern of potential conflict of interest.
- Can I apply this programme if I am a sibling of the programme staff?
No, all the immediate family members of the programme staff are not allowed to participate in this programme in concern of potential conflict of interest. If you are an extended family member of the programme staff, please inform the programme staff and indicate the relationship.
24. Can I / my team seek external consultant/advisor to support the implementation of our project?
Yes. You can solicit any external support to help to implement your project. However, the engagement of consultant or advisor does not mean the principal applicant and/or your team will be relieved of your responsibilities to make your efforts to undertake the project. The principal applicant and your team shall always remain the key drivers and implementers of the project, with or without any external help or support.