Emergent Ventures, a project of the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, is leading a new “Fast Grants” program to support research to fight Covid-19. Here is the bottom line:
Science funding mechanisms are too slow in normal times and may be much too slow during the COVID-19 pandemic. Fast Grants are an effort to correct this.
If you are a scientist at an academic institution currently working on a COVID-19 related project and in need of funding, we invite you to apply for a Fast Grant. Fast grants are $10k to $500k and decisions are made in under 48 hours. If we approve the grant, you’ll receive payment as quickly as your university can receive it.
More than $10 million in support is available in total, and that is in addition to earlier funds raised to support prizes. The application site has further detail and explains the process and motivation.
I very much wish to thank John Collison, Patrick Collison, Paul Graham, Reid Hoffman, Fiona McKean and Tobias Lütke, Yuri and Julia Milner, and Chris and Crystal Sacca for their generous support of this initiative, and I am honored to be a part of it.
Meanwhile, elsewhere in the world (FT):
The president of the European Research Council — the EU’s top scientist — has resigned after failing to persuade Brussels to set up a large-scale scientific programme to fight Covid-19.
During World War II, the NDRC accomplished a lot of research very quickly. In his memoir, Vannevar Bush recounts: “Within a week NDRC could review the project. The next day the director could authorize, the business office could send out a letter of intent, and the actual work could start.” Fast Grants are an effort to unlock progress at a cadence similar to that which served us well then.
We are not able at this time to process small donations for this project, but if If you are an interested donor please reach out to [email protected].