Using the funding search

Topics covered in this article:

You can also watch this video series to get a quick overview on how to elevate your funding strategy with Devex Pro Funding.


Search for funding

1. Access the funding search by clicking on Funding on the top navigation bar.


2. Search through the different reports by looking at all of them or by selecting only specific ones. You can differentiate the reports in the list of results by the colored line on the left of each opportunity title.


What are the differences between the reports?

  • The funding activity report database (purple) contains information throughout the funding cycle such as press releases at the very early stage, media coverage, donor country strategies, operational updates and direct insights from our team based on outreach to major donors, foundations, private sector entities, media, and philanthropies. You can find information related to new loan approvals, partnership announcements or funding related initiatives in this database.

  • A donor releases a program report (blue) before the tendering process begins. The report shares project details like background, components, total budget and possible sectors of engagement.

  • Tenders, grants and open opportunities (orange) are then released under the umbrella of this program report, there may be a number of separate tenders released calling for proposals for particular segments of the project, or just one for the entire project. 

  • Contract awards (green) include information on recently awarded projects. If you filter based on Contract Awards you can also access shortlist reports, this lists the organizations shortlisted for a particular project.

Click the above links if you need a more in-depth explanation about what each of these reports includes.

3. Refine your search by using keywords, filters for countries, funders and topics, or by using the advanced filters.



  • By default the search results are sorted by publication date. But once keywords are used the sorting switches to relevance and shows results for the last month. To see more results change the Updated at filter to All time.
  • If you want to search for funding in a number of countries in the same region it’s better to include the region name (e.g. West Africa) rather than all the specific countries in the search box.

  • The advanced filters that are accessible depend on which reports you would like to search through. For example, if you would just like to search through Programs and Tenders & Grants, the filters include type, status, opportunity size, category and last updated. All other filters not related to those reports are greyed out and become accessible once you select the related report.


Note: please see this link to all the funding sources we currently track.

4. Skim through the results, and click on them to see the full text of the opportunity on the right. This allows you to assess the relevance of opportunities quicker and without having to leave the page. 



Create, edit, activate and deactivate an alert

1. Create an alert by firstly running a search, and then clicking “Create Alert” at the top of the page. You then choose how often you would like to receive it, and name it.



2. Review your alerts, activate or deactivate them by clicking on the “alerts” button at the top of the list of search results. The blue icons on the right allow you to edit and delete alerts.


  • If you have a company rather than an individual membership, you can review your colleagues’ alerts by clicking on “Shared alerts”. You can even activate an alert based on the criteria they have set-up. Note: It’s only possible to deactivate or delete your own alerts.

3. Update your alert by clicking on it on the list, making the necessary changes to the keywords or filters, and clicking “update alert”.



Manage alerts with the Team Dashboard

The Team Dashboard allows you to manage and share visibility of the funding opportunities across your team. By adding saved email alerts to a board you can better organize the opportunities of interest to your team.

1. Click on the menu icon and then on Team Dashboard


2. Click on Create new board and give it a name to set up a new Team Dashboard


3. Select the newly created board from the list to get to the Dashboard page

4. From there click on Add saved email alert and choose the saved email alert to add to the dashboard, you can choose from those you and your colleagues have created. Note: To create and edit email alerts go to the alerts section on the funding search.

5. Once you added an alert click on Share alert and select one of your colleagues that is also on the membership. You can leave a short message for them to let them know about the alert. After you click on Share alert an email notification with your message is sent to them and from then on they receive notifications for that alert via email.



6. Review your alert settings, add or remove recipients, or download the results of the alert directly from the dashboard.


Share or download reports

Share individual reports with your team by email or directly by link. They will be able to view it even if they don't have a Devex membership. We have designed this feature to help business development teams work more efficiently.


In addition to that you have the possibility to download your search results as CSV, XML or JSON file. Scroll down to the bottom of the search results and select the file type you would like to download. Note: only the first hundred search results are included in the report.


Track reports

Many users track reports so that they receive email notifications when there has been an update on a report, and so that they can manage the reports they are interested in.


  • All tracked reports are listed on your individual Funding Dashboard. It can be useful to see a list of those reports you have tracked as a reminder of those of interest. You can also see those tracked by your colleagues, aiming to help you collaborate better. 

Contact an Analyst

The Devex team of analysts are experts on the current funding sectors. They’re continuously monitoring donor websites and media sources to ensure the Devex content is as up to date and useful as possible. If you have a specific question about a particular funding opportunity, feel free to get in touch with them.


Here are some examples of the types of questions that they can help you with:

  • Which program is this tender related to?

  • Have contract awards been already issued under the umbrella of the program?

  • There are no donor contact details on this report, could you help me find them? 

  • Broader questions such as “how do I apply for this funding?” are usually answered within the tender document, and so it’s better to consult that than ask them this type of question.


Source timeline, donor contact and additional resources

The timeline information is a critical piece of knowledge regarding the project, it can be accessed on the body of the tender document. Should you have a question you would like to post to the donor about the project you can source the email address of the contact for this particular project underneath the timeline details. In addition to that all relevant resources are included directly on Devex under More Resources.


Setting up different business alerts

Members take different approaches to tracking funding, some are focused on one donor in specific locations, and others want to diversify funding sources or expand into new regions.

We recommend new members to set-up a number of different types of alerts and monitor the results over a number of weeks to assess which work the best.

Here are some links to particular searches which members have based their alerts on:





Managing searches with too many results or irrelevant results 

Firstly, it's worth keeping in mind that the evolution of the international development sector has resulted in more funding being directed to multi-sectoral projects than ever before. This has meant that sometimes it's more challenging to get search results that are 100% accurate to your interests. But with a bit of tweaking you can make it work well for you, here are some tips to help you along the way:

1. Avoid long strings of general keywords  

For example if you are interested in funding opportunities related to education around gender equality, and also health related to youth or children you may type in education gender equality youth health systems young people and leave the funder and location filter open. It's likely you will return many irrelevant opportunities that include these words, as they are common to many different types of funding opportunities.

We recommend people search and then set-up separate business alerts on each particular topic so that they can review the results and refine them based on each topic. So for example if you are interested in these topics, you could run two separate searches:

  • education AND "gender equality"  - note the use of quotation marks to avoid the words equality and gender being searched for separately
  • health AND (youth child*) - note 1. the space between youth and child means it's searching for either youth or child. 2. Parenthesis are necessary to define it as a statement. 3. The * means it will search for all words with this root (children, child).

This article gives you a list of Boolean search term combinations that can help.

2. Exclude certain terms from your search results using AND NOT

For example if opportunities related to construction continue to appear within your results exclude all of these by typing AND NOT construction, i.e. health AND NOT construction. Also it's always worth considering the category filter which allows you select opportunities concerning services versus works or goods.

3. Think like a funder

Use the terms that funders use to describe the topic you're interested in and test them by watching how the number of results changes as you add or remove keywords. 



4. Start with your existing experience, visualize your results to identify other related opportunities.

If you are part of a smaller organization that has worked in one particular region, or with one donor before, it's worth starting by basing your search on this experience. Given that you may have a strong network there, know the funder and how projects work in this space you will have a better chance of expanding there to start with.

So if you input relevant keyword(s) and then specify this region, or funder, to then visualize the results you can see the other funders that have worked on that topic in the region, or if you have selected the funder you will see the other regions they have disbursed funding for similar projects. 

See search below based on the idea that you are open to new funding opportunities across the world but you have experience working with partner organizations that have experience in West Africa.

Likewise, if you have experience working with a particular funder on a topic you can quickly see the top ten regions they are directing their funding to this way. This then allows you to focus your search and/or business alert on these areas or funders, while you can always create another search based on all regions and funders. When creating the business alert you may choose to receive it once a week rather than daily so that you're not overwhelmed with too many results each day.