Since 2008, the Global Seed Funds Program (GSF) has funded more than 530 faculty-led projects in over 70 countries. From engineering medical diagnostic devices in Mexico to exploring science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education in Israel to building the framework for a self-sustaining community of electricity prosumers in Italy, GSF funds projects that confront worldwide challenges and educate future global leaders. This January the program awarded $2,006,906 to MIT faculty to cover international travel, meeting, and workshop costs. Managed by MIT International Science and Technology Initiatives (MISTI), the GSF enables participating MIT teams to partner with international peers with the goal of developing and launching joint projects. Many of the joint projects lead to publications, additional grant awards and the development of valuable long-term relationships between international researchers and MIT faculty and students. Applicants are encouraged to include MIT undergraduate and graduate students in their projects.
In the 2015-2016 grant cycle, 86 projects — out of 214 applications — were awarded funding by MISTI GSF. This cycle’s winning faculty and research scientists represent four MIT schools and 22 departments across the Institute. MISTI GSF consists of a general pool of funds for projects in any country and several country-specific funds. In the latest grant cycle, MISTI supported collaborations in 24 unique countries through 21 individual MISTI seed funds, including the newest funds: MIT-Brazil Lemann Seed Fund for Collaborative Projects, MIT-Germany–University of Stuttgart Seed Fund, MIT-Israel Seed Fund, and MIT-Peru Seed Fund. Click to see this year’s GSF grantees.
The MIT-Imperial College London Seed Fund, administered by MISTI, was also launched this year through a partnership between the MIT Office of the Provost and Imperial College London. The MIT-Imperial College Seed Fund primarily supports travel costs for exchange between teams at MIT and Imperial College London, and grants range between $30,000 and $50,000 for an 18-month project period. Winners will be announced on the MISTI site in mid-March.
The next MISTI GSF call for proposals will be announced in May 2016 with a proposal deadline in early fall. Additional details are available on the MISTI website. To read more about GSF projects, visit student and faculty "Notes from the Field."
The Global Seed Funds Program is an initiative within MISTI, MIT’s flagship international education program and a part of the MIT School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences (MIT-SHASS). Each year MISTI places more than 800 students with internship, teaching, and research opportunities in over 19 countries.