Project acceleration grant: how to apply

We are now offering grants to accelerate projects that are already underway. For example, if you are writing an academic article with a clear path to publishing, or need to get a few more components for a DIY project with relevance to our mission, we would be happy to help you get over the threshold and help you succeed. Grants, if awarded, are for $4,000. While we hope $4,000 is able to substantially accelerate your project, we know many types of research are expensive. We will still be happy if the funding helps as part of a larger effort.

We have no restrictions on eligibility of who may apply, with the exception of people who are employees or board members of the FFF. People with or without university affiliations, as well as representatives of companies or other entities, are welcome to apply. While we don’t require anything specific, your qualifications and access to facilities should be sufficient to give us high confidence your project can succeed.

The use of funding is restricted to cover the activities described in your application. If your research is being done at a research institution or university, and that entity carves out a slice of the grant for overhead costs, that must be described as part of your application.

Applications are evaluated on a rolling basis. We should generally be able to get back to you with a decision well within 4-6 weeks of your submission.

In order to apply, please submit the following to us using email at [email protected]:

  1. Project name
  2. Expected deliverable or outcome: Journal publication, proof-of-concept device, computer program, whitepaper, resource or database, equipment for a larger project, etc.
  3. Project abstract or summary
  4. Resume or CV of the principal investigator or project lead
  5. Current stage of the project: preliminary data, drafts, works-in-progress, etc.
  6. Description of intended use of the funds. Estimates such as materials costs, time, publishing or website posting costs, and institutional overhead (if any), must be given. Cost risks, such as breakage or technical problems, should be included if possible.
  7. Confirmation that your findings will be made publicly available upon project completion
  8. Confirmation that you will acknowledge the Freedom of Form Foundation’s financial assistance
  9. Confirmation that if any funds remain upon project completion, remaining funds will either be (a) used to accelerate a follow-up project consistent with our mission, or (b) returned to the Freedom of Form Foundation.

Your application materials will be kept confidential, and will not be shared outside the Board of Directors. We will respect any proprietary, conceptual, intellectual, and/or privileged information contained in the application materials.

However, please keep in mind that upon completion of the project, we expect all information to be made publicly available. Any programming or development work must be open-source. Any publications in academic journals must be open access. Any patent applications, if relevant, must already have a priority date. Any intellectual property, such as patents granted, must be licensed for free to non-commercial including nonprofit users. Intellectual property licensing costs for commercial users including startup companies with less than $100,000 per year in revenue must also be free. Trade secrets cannot be developed using our grant awards.