Microgrants for discussion

Hi Council,
I’m putting this up here for final discussion and to make it easy to copy and paste into the General category to announce the microgrant programme later today. I’ve got a thing later today, I would like to ask if someone would do the final edits if any, and then make the post, at around the time the West Coast wakes up on Friday morning (1300 UTC). Otherwise I’ll eventually get around to it.

Up to 20 microgrants of USD 500

are available to organisations to run STEM workshops or short courses, to be held by May 31 2023. Applications are accepted now until Saturday March 25.

The goal of the workshops or short courses should be to teach, deploy, or experiment with open science hardware tools and their related software applications, at any level of difficulty to any audience, in a hands-on manner, to participants that will put that knowledge to practical and immediate use. If this event kicks off or is part of a series of similar events, that would be preferred. See Selection Criteria below for more on what we are looking for.

Examples of such events are:

  • Citizen/community science workshop teaching how and why to
    operate, deploy, retrieve a data logger.
  • Starting an open science hardware club or initiative at your school, university or maker space.
  • Teaching open science hardware principles to high school students to encourage them to share future projects - Funding for existing science club events focused on open science hardware.

To be eligible,

  • The applicant must be an organisation (funds cannot be disbursed
    to individuals);
  • The event aligns with the GOSH manifesto and ethos;
  • The organisation and event are not in a location that is under a
    US embargo (sorry about that).

To apply,

post to this thread, addressing every one of these 9 points with a short paragraph each at most. Earlier application posts are chosen over later ones if a tie breaker is needed during the selection process.

  1. Your name, and that of your organisation (or the organisation that will receive funds on your behalf).
  2. Name of event. Make another post with another event name if you have another event.
  3. Email address by which you may be contacted.
  4. What open science hardware tool(s) will be the focus of your event?
  5. Describe your course or workshop, whom and what it is for, where and when it will be held, how many attendees (IRL or virtual) you expect.
  6. Do you have plans for ongoing activities after this event OR is it intended that the participants will continue activities after this event? If so, describe the intentions and plans here.
  7. What event outputs (e.g. teaching materials, curricula, software, etc.) will you make available? Will these outputs carry an open licence?
  8. What you will use the grant for, roughly.
  9. Provide links (references) to documentation or reviews of similar
    events or works you have executed. School coursework or projects
    can be listed, even social media posts. Anything to give a sense
    of what you’re about and your ability to successfully conduct this
    course or workshop. To keep this short, just the links and their descriptions will do.


Applications are accepted now until the end of Saturday March 25 2023 AOE.

Then the review process begins, and lasts until the end of Saturday April 1. We’ll formally reject ineligible applications at this time. All applicants are obliged to be involved in reviewing the remaining applications, details on this simple process involving the selection criteria below will be provided later.

Results of the review process will be announced on Tuesday April 4.

Your event must have occurred by Wednesday May 31,

After your event, please update us (via the forum) on how it went, and this can fulfill in part the item 7 below for your next application.

Selection criteria

These are the criteria by which applications are evaluated during the review process.

  • Meets programme criteria: the proposal is for the described target audience and purpose, it involves open hardware and its use for science.

  • Value and impact of the event: you think the activities have a high chance of success in promoting open hardware for science with their target audience.

  • Ongoing impact: The proposal described activities that are intended and likely to lead to ongoing projects, courses or communities developing or using open science hardware (prioritised compared to one-off events).

  • Feasibility: The proposal seems accomplishable given the described timeline, goals, and budget. Budget seems reasonable and includes estimated costs, requested costs, and costs covered by other sources. All expenses are justified.

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Thanks for all the hard work that went into this, @Harold!!

A few minor things:

  • “What event outputs (e.g. teaching materials, curricula, software, etc.) will you make available? Will these outputs carry an open licence?”

    I think we should instead follow previous funding rounds and require at least one, but preferably all, output(s) to use a fully open source license.

  • this can fulfill in part the item 7 below for your next application

    Should this mean item 7 “above” instead of below? And what is the “next application”?

  • Revise wording to more explicitly ask applicants to demonstrate not just how their event promotes open source hardware, but also open science hardware (i.e. make clear connection to science). This was a point of confusion in previous funding rounds, so worth making crystal clear here.

Saw this after I posted, but thanks for your input! I know you’ve been busy.

  1. Unlike other funding programmes, we will have much less control over selection this time. If an applicant doesn’t want to make any outputs open (and there are legit instances, like list of attendees or their particulars), they’ll just not declare them. “Nope, we don’t have any event outputs.” Of course, then we hope they get ranked lower. Also, this is a much lower value grant than usual.

  2. Thanks, I caught this mistake in time.

  3. I thought I caught all the instances of this omission. The only part that departs from this wording is “open hardware for science”, in the Selection Criteria section. I think this is ok, and this section was also a cut/paste from the event funding programme.

I’m glad we’re having this discussion, thanks Pen (c:

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