Frequently Asked Questions

Grants that involve the state government as a key stakeholder will be subject to obtaining the necessary approval before hand. Think City's role is to compliment state and local government efforts to rejuvenate George Town, Kuala Lumpur and Butterworth. Like everything else, the owners as grantees will have to abide by state conservation guidelines and regulations.

That will depend on the number of proposals we receive and are approved by the Think City Board.

No, the funds for the Grants Programme have been specifically allocated for the purpose of driving urban regeneration and rejuvenation projects within the George Town World Heritage Site (WHS), Kuala Lumpur and Butterworth.

While the Board of Think City gives the final approval for the projects, every proposal will be fed through a triple-review process: first cut evaluation by the Think City team; review and recommendation by the Think City Advisory Panel; and finally passed on to the Think City Board, who will in turn review and give final approval to the most innovative and sustainable projects.

Currently, we have Elizabeth Cardosa, Prof. Emeritus Ezrin Arbi, Dr. Richard Engelhardt, Prof. Dr. Ghafar Ahmad, Dato' Dr. Goh Ban Lee, Dr. Stephen Leong, Prof. (Rtd.) Dr. Loh Wei Leng, Dr. Razak Abdul Aziz, Dato' Dr. Toh Kin Woon, Prof. (Rtd.) Dr. Wazir J. Karim, Dato Dr. Leong Yueh Kwong, Sri Husnaini Sofjan, Prof. Dr. Shamsul Baharuddin, Anis Yusoff, Takashi Kimura, Dr. Badriyah Salleh, Dr. Paul Kratoska, Prof. Danny Wong, Norliza Hashim, Chee Sek Thim, Liyana Abdullah, Amna Emir, Ng Sek San, Leow Puay Tin, Kamil Merican, Dr. Khoo Suet Leng, Anthony Capon and Assoc. Prof. Dr. Yahaya Ahmad on the Panel. This list is set to grow as we engage different subject matter experts in the future.

Think City welcomes grant proposals that cover the following areas of heritage conservation:

  • Cultural Mapping Projects :
    To include all types of research projects related to George Town, Kuala Lumpur and Butterworth and its links to the rest of Malaysia, the region and the world. The products can include databases, journal articles, brochures, books, workshops, conferences, documentaries and short films
  • Shared Spaces :
    A collection of initiatives aimed at improving and upgrading public areas, as part of a larger strategy to make George Town, Kuala Lumpur and Butterworth more liveable and to keep the World Heritage Sites' Outstanding Universal Values alive, particularly with regards to the management plan's intention of strengthening community cooperation.
  • Physical Conservation Projects
    To include all types of projects aimed at improving the environment and promoting sustainable development in the city. These can include tree-planting, recycling, waste-management, rain-water harvesting, social housing, affordable housing, cultural festivals and other similar projects.
  • Capacity Building :
    To include all types of projects that help raise awareness about the Think City Grants Programme as well as efforts to conserve George Town's Outstanding Universal Values (OUVs). Projects can include public awareness campaigns, public talks, forums, workshops, conferences, advertisements, websites, podcasting and all other related activities.

The Grants Programme will not fund the following:

  • Routine maintenance and minor repairs of private property
  • Alterations and private interior work
  • Construction work already underway
  • Any kind of work that detracts from George Town's OUVs, under the discretion of the Think City Advisory Panel and Board

We welcome all applicants as long as their proposed projects will contribute to the betterment and rejuvenation of George Town, Kuala Lumpur and Butterworth. Think City operates on a non-discriminatory approach we do not discriminate based on gender, ethnicity, class or political affiliation.

Firstly, you should download the Think City Grants Programme Application Form from the Think City website. You will be required to complete the Form and prepare a Project Statement with details of financial projections. Applicants for Matching/Repayable Grants will have to include a Conservation Statement prepared by an appropriately qualified and accredited professional adviser. When you have all your documents, you have to submit the hard copy along with the supplementary documents needed to complete your application (a checklist is included in the last page of the application form).

While the projects should emphasise and enhance the core and buffer zones of the WHS, Kuala Lumpur and Butterworth through proactive interventions, it covers the boundaries of those cities at large.

No, there will not be a quota system as all project funding will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

After a grant is awarded, a contract will be signed between Think City and the Grantee, who can be an individual or a representative of an institution. Think City programme officers will hold progress report meetings with Grantees, who will be tasked to report regularly on project progress and results achieved within the submitted timeline of their proposals. Grantees are also required to submit a financial report (using forms given by Think City) for tracking and evaluation purposes.

Yes, the effectiveness of their implemented projects must meet the following KPIs:

  • Economic measures: Grants should stimulate economic activity in the WHS particularly the rehabilitation of buildings and the revitalisation of neighbourhoods; infrastructural improvement and other physical developments that will stimulate overall increase in real-estate value.
  • Social Capital: Programmes should help build capacity for interpretation of heritage products that will improve the value of George Town, Kuala Lumpur and Butterworth as heritage tourism destinations.
  • Public Good: Programmes should build bridges between different ethnic and religious communities and encourage "inter-cultural" communication.
  • Improvement in Administration & Management: Programmes should also help stimulate better governance of the locality; encourage public-private cooperation; and involve civil servants working with academics and civil society to improve the management of the city.
  • Privately-driven Conservation: As most of George Town, Kuala Lumpur and Butterworth is in private hands, special attention will be given to projects that encourage private owners to open their properties to public participation. Particularly important are clan, religious and family trust properties.
  • Sustainability Agenda: Projects that provide new ways of thinking about George Town, Kuala Lumpur or Butterworth, and has a sustainable model should be encouraged. In fact, all applicants must be encouraged to include a sustainability assessment in their applications.

While the timeline for each project will be set by the applicant, depending on project complexity, on average it should take a process of six to twenty-four months.

The Grantees will report regularly to the Think City programme managers.