What is FRIDA?
FRIDA is the Regional Fund for Digital Innovation in Latin America and the Caribbean. This LACNIC initiative has been contributing to the development of the regional information society since 2004. The program provides funding as well as capacity building and networking opportunities to civil society organizations, enterprises, governments, and universities seeking to unlock the potential of information and communications technology for the region’s development.
FRIDA was launched in 2004 with the support of two Canadian government agencies: ICA, the Institute for Connectivity in the Americas, and IDRC, the International Development Research Centre. Today, the IDRC continues to support FRIDA’s activities and remains a key partner whose financial and technical support has contributed to the success of the program and its activities. In the early years of the FRIDA program, the Internet Society joined the group of contributors that have made it possible to serve a broad diversity of initiatives and research groups, over the years and in various stages. In 2012, close collaboration with the IDRC led to the creation of the global Seed Alliance, which comprises FRIDA and its sister programs, ISIF Asia and FIRE, run by Regional Internet Registries APNIC and AFRINIC. The creation of Seed Alliance meant a great challenge and opened up new opportunities for enhancing the quality of support available to researchers and organizations in the LAC region and in the regions served by our colleagues. At the same time, it generated a space to incorporate other organizations who saw the work of the Alliance and regional programs as an effective contribution to the development of regional communities through the use of the Internet. Thus, in 2013, SIDA, the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency, joined the process by contributing resources to fund research and recognize successful initiatives in the three regions.