The Future Fund’s Project Ideas Competition

Link post

The FTX Foundation’s Future Fund is a philanthropic fund making grants and investments to ambitious projects in order to improve humanity’s long-term prospects.

We have a longlist of project ideas that we’d be excited to help launch.

We’re now announcing a prize for new project ideas to add to this longlist. If you submit an idea, and we like it enough to add to the website, we’ll pay you a prize of $5,000 (or more in exceptional cases). We’ll also attribute the idea to you on the website (unless you prefer to be anonymous).

All submissions must be received in the next week, i.e. by Monday, March 7, 2022.

We are excited about this prize for two main reasons:

  • We would love to add great ideas to our list of projects.

  • We are excited about experimenting with prizes to jumpstart creative ideas.

To participate, you can either

  • Add your proposal as a comment to this post (one proposal per comment, please), or

  • Fill in this form

Please write your project idea in the same format as the project ideas on our website. Here’s an example:

Early detection center

Biorisk and Recovery from Catastrophes

By the time we find out about novel pathogens, they’ve already spread far and wide, as we saw with Covid-19. Earlier detection would increase the amount of time we have to respond to biothreats. Moreover, existing systems are almost exclusively focused on known pathogens—we could do a lot better by creating pathogen-agnostic systems that can detect unknown pathogens. We’d like to see a system that collects samples from wastewater or travelers, for example, and then performs a full metagenomic scan for anything that could be dangerous

You can also provide further explanation, if you think the case for including your project idea will not be obvious to us on its face.

Some rules and fine print:

  • You may submit refinements of ideas already on our website, but these might receive only a portion of the full prize.

  • At our discretion, we will award partial prizes for submissions that are proposed by multiple people, or require additional work for us to make viable.

  • At our discretion, we will award larger prizes for submissions that we really like.

  • Prizes will be awarded at the sole discretion of the Future Fund.

We’re happy to answer questions, though it might take us a few days to respond due to other programs and content we’re launching right now.

We’re excited to see what you come up with!

(Thanks to Owen Cotton-Barratt for helpful discussion and feedback.)