Alternative Sources of Support – December 2018

Funding opportunities from OTF and elsewhere
Fri, 2019-01-04 18:27

Each month, OTF sends an announcement of upcoming funding deadlines relevant to Internet freedom to our OTF-announce mailing list. The announcement includes funding opportunities from both OTF and alternative funding sources. Below you can find the December 2018 edition.

If you’d like to receive this announcement directly in your inbox, you can sign up for our low traffic OTF-announce mailing list here. In addition, you can find our compiled list of alternative funding sources here. The opportunities listed below are only for those with approaching deadlines, while a number of funders accept applications on a rolling basis.

OTF Funding

OTF – Information Controls Fellowship Program
Application opens: January 10, 2019
Deadline: February 24, 2019

The Information Controls Fellowship Program (ICFP) cultivates research, outputs, and creative collaboration on topics related to repressive Internet censorship and surveillance. Fellows embed with a host organization of their choice for the duration of their fellowship, which may last three, six, nine, or 12 months in duration. ICFP fellows receive a monthly stipend of $4,200 and a travel stipend of $1,250 to $5,000 depending on the fellowship length.
More information:

OTF – Internet Freedom Fund
Next deadline: March 1, 2019
The Internet Freedom Fund is OTF’s primary way to support projects and people working on open and accessible technology-centric projects that promote human rights, Internet freedom, open societies, and help advance inclusive and safe access to global communications networks. Successful applicants are awarded monetary support up to $900,000 and no less than $10,000, with preference given to projects and people who are new to the Internet freedom community, directly serving those living within repressive environments, and are requesting less than $300,000 for a duration of 12 months or less.

OTF – Core Infrastructure Fund
Next deadline: March 1, 2019
The Core Infrastructure Fund supports the development, improvement, and increased adoption of foundational ‘building block’ technologies that are relied upon by digital security and circumvention projects. This may include efforts focused on sustaining or improving PGP, SSL, SSH, Tor, OTR, pluggable transports, code libraries, or other technologies, infrastructures, and standards that make up the core building blocks of everyday Internet freedom technologies and which are used by people throughout the world to increase their access, privacy, and security online.

OTF – Rapid Response Fund
Deadline: Ongoing
The Rapid Response Fund is part of a broader OTF initiative which aims to facilitate the development of a strong digital emergency response community that can work together to resolve threats in a timely and comprehensive manner. OTF offers both direct financial support as well as technical services from trusted service partners to resolve digital emergencies experienced by high-risk Internet users and organizations, such as bloggers, activists, journalists. and human rights defenders.

OTF – Labs
Deadline: Ongoing
For more specific, one-off support needs and services, check out OTF’s Labs: Localization, Community, Engineering, Usability, Red Team, Learning, and Legal.
Learn more about OTF’s Labs here:

Alternative Funding

Counterpart International – Request for Applications (RFA): Small Advocacy and Research Projects
Deadline: January 4, 2019
Counterpart International’s Internet Governance/Internet Freedom project has issued an RFA for small advocacy and research projects for Sri Lanka, Ukraine, Venezuela, and Zimbabwe. Funding up to $24,999 is available for projects focused on supporting “a human rights based approach to internet governance” in these countries, and which “demonstrate a commitment to keeping the internet a vibrant and open democratic space for free expression, access to information, and privacy.”
More information:

Coding it Forward – Civic Digital Fellowship
Extended Deadline: January 13, 2019
The Civic Digital Fellowship provides current, full-time students with 10-week fellowship opportunities with six available federal agencies. Fellows receive a $4,000+ stipend, free housing, and travel costs to and from Washington, DC, where all fellows are based. The fellowship runs from June through August. Note that applicants must be U.S. citizens.
More information:

Digital Whistleblowing Fund – “Anti-Corruption Activism”
Extended Deadline: January 15, 2019
The Digital Whistleblowing Fund offers financial support up to €3,000 or IT and advisory support for “investigative journalism groups and human rights grassroots organisations” to start their own “ secure digital whistleblowing initiative.” Eligible organizations must be a member of one of the following networks: Southeast Europe Coalition on Whistleblower Protection, Whistleblowing International Network, Transparency International, or the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists. The theme of the first round is “Anti-corruption Activism.”
More information:

Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University – Fellowship 2019-2020
Deadline: January 18, 2019
The Berkman Klein Center is now accepting applications for its fellowship program for the 2019-2020 academic year. “This opportunity is for those who wish to spend 2019-2020 in residence in Cambridge, MA as part of the Center’s vibrant community of research and practice, and who seek to engage in collaborative, cross-disciplinary, and cross-sectoral exploration of some of the Internet’s most important and compelling issues.” Fellowships are “rarely stipended,” though Berkman “will award a small number of stipends to incoming fellows.”
More information:

Euro-Mediterranean Foundation of Support to Human Rights Defenders (EMHRF) – Standard Grant
Deadline: January 20, 2019
EMHRF provides support to “human rights defenders [in the South-Mediterranean region] in difficulty or at risk, for the specific purpose of allowing them to pursue their activities, as well as to small human rights organisations or groups with the aim of strengthening their capacities in implementing innovative activities in the region.” Funding may not exceed €40,000 and is usually between €5,000 and €30,000 for a duration of 12-18 months.
More information:

NLNet Foundation – Privacy & Trust Enhancing Technologies
Deadline: February 1, 2019
NLNet is committed to allocating 5.6 million euros to “small to medium-size R&D grants towards privacy and trust enhancing technologies” through 2021, and are currently accepting proposals for projects seeking between €5,000 and €50,000. Project outputs will be open sourced and seeks to provide people with “new instruments that allow them more agency – and assist us with fulfilling the human need of keeping some private and confidential context and information private and confidential.”
More information:

State Department Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor (DRL) – FY 2018 DRL Internet Freedom Annual Program Statement
Deadline: February 8, 2019
The State Department’s Internet Freedom program has issued its annual program statement detailing its desired criteria for applicants interested in submitting a Statement of Interest (SOI). There are four funding themes: 1) “Technology: Uncensored and Secure Access to the Global Internet,” 2) “Digital Safety,” 3) “Policy and Advocacy,” and 4) “Applied Research,” with preference given to open source technologies and projects that include a long-term sustainability model, feature collaborative partnerships, and which benefit at-risk and vulnerable populations. In order to remain eligible, SOIs should not request “less than $500,000” or “more than $3,000,000.” Organizations may submit up to two SOIs per deadline.
More information:

Library Freedom Project – Library Freedom Institute 2019
Deadline: February 15, 2019
Designed for public librarians, this six-month program will allow participants to better prioritize privacy for users through a “combination of readings, webinars, exercises, class discussion, and assignments.” Intended outcomes for participants include learning how to do things like “install, configure, and troubleshoot privacy software like Tor Browser,” increase your library’s digital security, and better “educate and train your community on privacy best practices.” The program consists of a free online course and one in-person weekend session in New York City.
More information:

SAGE – Concept Grants Program
Deadline: February 15, 2019
SAGE Publishing is offering funding for “innovative proposals for software solutions that will tackle some of the challenges currently facing social scientists and enable more researchers to engage with computational methods and big data research.” The program funds “early stage software ideas, particularly those that include a plan for sustainability and/or that have future commercial potential within the academic market.” Funding up to $35k is available.
More information:

National Science Foundation (NSF) – Secure and Trustworthy Cyberspace (SaTC) FY19 Solicitation
Application opens: October 1, 2018
Deadline: September 30, 2019

NSF’s SaTC program “welcomes proposals that address cybersecurity and privacy,” with preference given to “proposals that advance the field of cybersecurity and privacy within a single discipline or interdisciplinary efforts that span multiple disciplines.” NSF estimates that there will be $68 million available for project funding, with 93 awards in total expected. Funding is available for small (up to $500k, up to three years) and medium (from $500,001 to $1.2 million, up to four years) projects across three designations (CORE, Education, and Transition to Practice). Note that per NSF guidelines, applicants must be U.S.-based. This year, NSF is accepting SaTC submissions on a rolling basis over the course of a year, from October 2018 until September 2019. There are a number of other notable changes made from past NSF SaTC solicitations, which can be found in the posting linked to below.
More information: