UPDATE: We will have office hours on Wednesday September 20th at 6pm PDT and Thursday September 21st at 9am PDT in this Vidyo room.We will put any questions asked & answered into the FAQ.
Mozilla seeks applications for research funding to support its mission: to ensure the Internet is a global public resource, open and accessible to all. These grants include topics both inside and outside of Mozilla’s core focus on Firefox, as well as topics that fit more broadly with our vision for improving the internet.
Research Domains Areas we have funded in the past include networking, security, compilers, software verification, software power management, developer tools, automatic translation, add-on privacy, improving internet safety, gender differences in VR, studying hacktivism, research tools for blind users, and teaching programming.
We are explicitly interested in supporting research into various technological domains, including virtual, mixed and augmented reality, voice assistants, natural language processing, understanding speech, agents, accessibility, machine learning, home networking and router use, the Internet of Things, Rust, Servo and Firefox.
We are also interested in supporting research into solutions that explore problems we don't know how to answer: for example, developing open data resources and allowing for data portability, exploring reasonable ways to balance advertising and privacy, improving web anonymity, developing open identity solutions and open standards for encrypted messaging, characterizing adblocking practices, researching alternatives to advertising to fund internet experiences, finding ways to improve the decentralization of the internet away from closed-source software and closed-source data, exploring issues related to vulnerable populations, and improving diversity in open source.
We also wish to find researchers working on internet health. These include initiatives to characterize and improve net neutrality, censorship and internet access around the world, enhance data portability on the web, protect privacy, explore the adoption of blockchain and related technologies, study the environmental impact of the internet, understand the impact of and solutions for misinformation and fake news, investigate human rights issues around the internet, and characterize the cost of ransomware attacks.
These research domains are by no means exhaustive: we are open to other research proposals as long as they support our mission.
Conference funding requests should not use this process: requests for developer conference funding should go through the Developer Events Request and requests for research conference funding should have the conference chair submit a Mozilla Academic Conference Grant Funding Request in conjunction with a Mozilla employee. Requests for non-research open source support, like supporting open source software projects, should go through MOSS.
What should I do? Your first step should be to read through this whole submission form, well in advance, so you know what you're going to need to do. We expect you to put together a clear, coherent expression of your problem, the approach you're taking to solve that problem, and the solution you hope to achieve. What's the minimum level of success you're hoping to achieve, what's the best case -- and how will you know how successful you are? Make sure that someone who isn't an expert in your field can understand your project, and make sure that someone who is an expert in your field can understand what you're doing that's new.
You should make sure that you explicitly cover these criteria: viability, alignment, value, and impact.
viability: how likely is it that you will be able to execute on what you plan?
alignment: how well is this project aligned with Mozilla’s mission? Is it worth doing, and does it help Mozilla accomplish the mission?
value: is this project good value for money?
impact: how much will this project impact the world? what would happen if you don't do this project?
We encourage but don't require you to have a Mozilla employee as a sponsor, and have them include a paragraph in support of your proposal. We recommend you have them read through your proposal before you submit, and incorporate any feedback they might have.
What limitations are there for this funding? Applications must be affiliated with a university, research institute or research-focused registered non-profit, in any country (except for those embargoed by the US State Department). You must include a plan for disseminating the results, which would normally include publication in a peer-reviewed and open-access venue, and we encourage you to make those publications, results, code, and/or data publicly accessible. We will pay open-access fees for not-for-profit publishers included in your budget. Please acknowledge Mozilla's support in your publication, and send it to us when it gets published. We particularly encourage you to further publish your work in a format more accessible to the public, like blog posts or articles in the popular press. Send us those, too!
University-affiliated applicants can be students or faculty; students will require a letter from their advisor. Funding amounts may vary from $1000 to $100,000, and we encourage the submission of small, focused proposals. We expect the timescale for most projects, not counting final publications, will be around one year. As part of our commitment to diversity, we will fund childcare up to 10% of a grant, with a cap of $7000. We particularly encourage applications from new faculty in their first or second years. Funding is given as an unrestricted gift to the institution. We do not pay university overhead.
Please make sure you've read the FAQ before you start writing your application.
We will have live online office hours in this Vidyo room. EDIT: These will be on Wednesday September 20th at 6pm and Thursday September 21st at 9am. We will put any questions asked into the FAQ.
The submission deadline is September 25th, 2017 at 11:30pm PST. We will announce results by November 17th, 2017. If you miss this deadline, the next one will be announced in Spring of 2018.
When you're ready to begin, hit the big Start button at the top right.