Kelp forests are exceptionally diverse marine ecosystems, and the brown macroalgae play an important role in various cultures and industries. More research is needed to understand how to best utilize kelp and protect (and restore) kelp forests in a fast-changing world.
Kelp is making headlines, whether that's for the devastating loss of kelp forests along the California coast or the promise of restorative ocean farming to help heal the climate. The common denominator of all these stories and issues: more research is needed. We're running the Kelp Challenge Grant to help find and support new ideas and experiments to help advance our understanding of this important brown macroalgae and its habitat.
All kelp related research projects — everything from mapping bull kelp in California to measuring the ecosystem services of kelp farms — are encouraged to apply.
Experiment is the largest crowdfunding platform for scientific research with a funding success rate of 44%. Experiment's mission is to democratize the research process and remove barriers to scientific success. The average budget of a successful proposal is $4,000. For more information on the Experiment process, please refer to our Researcher Guide: https://experiment.com/guide
The call for proposal will last from now until April 1st, 2021. Proposals should be submitted directly on the Experiment site at experiment.com/grants/rivers Early submission is strongly encouraged. Early submissions will have more opportunity for feedback and coaching.
Proposals submitted for the call will be approved or rejected by April 21st and launched on April 22nd for a 35 day campaign. Projects will be promoted by Experiment and allied organizations. Researchers should expect to spend time weekly during the campaign working outreach. Coaching for outreach activities will be provided by Experiment staff. Past experience shows that projects whose proponents and research team mount a strong outreach campaign are most successful.
During the campaign participants will be expected to share the projects with their networks to attract support.
Read carefully: The Challenge Grant prize of $5,000 will be distributed to all participating and eligible projects in proportion to the number of backers accumulated by May 20th (at 5pm PST). To further clarify: on May 20th, projects will receive as an extra bonus a share of the $5,000 prize according to the number of project backers compared to the total number of backers in the competition. For example, suppose Project A has 40 backers, and a total of 500 backers chose to donate across all the projects (including Project A). Project A would then receive a share 40/500 of the $5,000 prize = 0.08*5,000 = $400.
This grant is for projects that launch campaigns by Apr 01, 2021. The project that ends with the most backers will receive an additional $5,000 grant. Eligible projects must be approved before the launch deadline.