GCA Local Adaptation Champions Awards 2023

Deadline: 31st of August, 2023

Rewarding inspiring, innovative, and scalable locally-led efforts to address climate change and build resilience among vulnerable communities.

The 2023 GCA Local Adaptation Champions Awards will be awarded in the following categories:

  • Capacity Building: This category includes innovations and initiatives that support a continuous and iterative process of learning for local communities, governments, and organizations. These innovations and initiatives should be based on established needs from the participants and enable inclusive local decision-making that is sustained beyond project cycles, for instance by leaving an institutional legacy; facilitating skills for technical and soft institutional attributes (like collaborative leadership, trust, and network governance); and/or allowing local actors to autonomously increase their capacity and share skills over time. ​Examples include institutionalizing adaptation capacity in local organizations; support for peer-to-peer learning; and support for local experts and champions.
  • Business Adaptation Solutions: This category is for small and large businesses that have supported leadership by local communities and governments in adaptation efforts; helped address structural inequalities faced by women, youth, children, disabled, displaced, indigenous peoples, and marginalized ethnic groups that make them more vulnerable to the impacts of climate change; and/or developed and made easily available adaptation solutions or technologies that address local climate-related vulnerabilities.
  • Women in Leadership: This category is for local, national, or global woman leaders who design, champion, and/or lead adaptation and climate resilience efforts in and for local communities.  Applications are invited from, or on behalf of, women leaders at the local, national, or global level who have led in the design or implementation of efforts that demonstrably build climate resilience – particularly of the most vulnerable – within communities.
  • Innovation in Devolving Finance: This category is for organizations, projects, initiatives, or programs using innovative models that provide flexible, long-term, patient, and/or predictable funding for adaptation at the local level. The funding should be made available in ways that enable and support local determination of climate challenges, priorities, and solutions.

Applications will be ranked according to a points-based system based on five main criteria:

  • Effectiveness and community impact.
  • Scalability and achieved (or potential for) replication.
  • Devolution of decision-making, particularly by the most vulnerable.
  • Gender and social inclusion.
  • Expected use of Award money.

The first top 20 shortlisted applicants (5 from each category) will be nominated for the Awards and requested to provide additional information to support their entry.

Thereafter, a Technical Advisory Group (TAG) will review the shortlisted candidates in their respective categories. The TAG will select two candidates per category, and a High-level Jury will make the final selection of winners.


  • 20 nominees will benefit from publicity around their nomination for the Awards.
  • Four winners will receive a cash prize of €15,000 and be invited to an Award Ceremony at COP28 in Dubai, which will take place from 30 November to 12 December 2023.


  • The Awards are open to any individual, organization, or group of partners worldwide, who have implemented or are in the process of implementing climate change adaptation/resilience interventions




  • Fill out the applications form containing a series of questions and spaces to upload files.
  • Submit a written description of the project/initiative or solution in a story format.
  • Upload a short video: an interview with participants, a presentation of the intervention, and footage of the intervention.
  • Upload photos, infographics, or other visual material to support the applicant’s story.

Click here to apply

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