Grants Database

The Foundation awards approximately 200 grants per year (excluding the Sloan Research Fellowships), totaling roughly $80 million dollars in annual commitments in support of research and education in science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and economics. This database contains grants for currently operating programs going back to 2008. For grants from prior years and for now-completed programs, see the annual reports section of this website.

Grants Database

Grantee
Amount
City
Year
  • grantee: Open Knowledge Commons, Inc.
    amount: $1,528,170
    city: Boston, MA
    year: 2009

    To create the first phase of a universal open digital library on the history of medicine from the collections of five leading institutions

    • Program Digital Technology
    • Sub-program Universal Access to Knowledge
    • Investigator Maura Marx

    The Foundation helped create the Open Knowledge Commons (OKC) in order to have more community building efforts in our open digitization initiatives and to catalyze new large?scale collaborations among libraries. This request is the first major digitization effort from OKC, and it involves creating an open digital library focusing on the history of medicine as a theme and drawing on the participation of five major institutions: the National Library of Medicine (NML); the Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine at Harvard Medical School; the Harvey Cushing/John Hay Whitney Medical Library at Yale University; the Augustus C. Long Health Sciences Library at Columbia University; and the New York Public Library. There are enthusiastic letters of endorsement from all five institutions, which include three of the leading collections in the world (NML, Harvard, and Yale). Following an initial phase of digitization of public domain monographs, they would also create a de?duplication database to prevent redundancy of efforts, a tool based on that used by the successful Biodiversity Heritage Library (BHL). The BHL is a model for this theme?based approach to scanning. The history of medicine is a very rich discipline intellectually that cuts across many fields. It is estimated that the entire field numbers about 1,500,000 volumes, of which half (750,000) are pamphlets, including dissertations, one third (500,000) are serial volumes, and the remaining sixth (250,000) are monographs. This effort would digitize 30,000 monographs or just over 10% of the existing collection. This effort would be a collaborative venture taking into account the scholarly needs and sensitivities of the academic and library communities which have not always felt well-served by existing digitization efforts. Given the new economic environment as well as the Google juggernaut, we need to be more selective and strategic about our digitization efforts and to try to build wider collaboration and coordination among interested users that will also benefit the general public.

    To create the first phase of a universal open digital library on the history of medicine from the collections of five leading institutions

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  • grantee: New York Public Radio
    amount: $225,000
    city: New York, NY
    year: 2009

    For the production and distribution of RadioLab, an innovative science-themed show on public radio

    • Program Public Understanding
    • Sub-program Radio
    • Investigator Ellen Horne

    WNYC requests a one-year renewal for Radiolab, the award-winning science series produced in conjunction with National Public Radio (NPR), for the production and distribution of ten one-hour science-themed shows. WNYC's Radiolab, one of the most innovative public radio shows in the country, which Sloan helped launch, also produces ten feature science-based pieces that are broadcast on National Public Radio magazine shows Morning Edition, All Things Considered, and Weekend Edition, and over 20 podcasts worth of additional material. Radiolab is unique, fresh, informative and inspiring-an exemplary radio show about science with the most original sound heard in many years that has found a large, receptive, and relatively young public audience. Radiolab continues to be an asset for Sloan's Program in Public Understanding of Science, Technology, Business, and Economics; it is a smart science radio series with an interesting sound whose popularity continues to grow.

    For the production and distribution of RadioLab, an innovative science-themed show on public radio

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  • grantee: Greater Washington Educational Telecommunications Association Inc.
    amount: $1,500,000
    city: Arlington, VA
    year: 2009

    For on-air and online coverage of economic and financial literacy on The PBS NewsHour

    • Program Public Understanding
    • Sub-program Television
    • Investigator Simon Marks

    Greater Washington Educational Telecommunications Association, Inc., requests two years of funding for enhanced economics coverage on The PBS NewsHour (The NewsHour), both on-air and online. The NewsHour continues to be the most serious and effective news show on television and has impressively maintained an audience of 1.2 million viewers nightly, higher than every news show except Fox News and the networks. Sloan's 2008 grant for public understanding of economics on The NewsHour resulted in a very impressive output-twice the number of on-air spots by Paul Solman about economic and financial literacy as originally envisioned. A reviewer remarked of Solman: "Among us professors of economics he is regarded as the best economics reporter on television." Few people even try to achieve this, and none are as qualified as Solman or have a better platform from which to teach. As one reviewer noted, "His reports are as unbiased and accurate as the discipline of economics allows them to be. He rarely presents a perspective as his alone. Instead, he finds the relevant experts, and lets them speak for themselves." An important component of this grant is the Web site. Currently, The NewsHour Web site attracts about half a million visitors a week and about 100,000 visit the three Sloan-supported economics sites. Just under a million users have visited Solman's site in the past six months and 720,000 have downloaded his material. This request represents a 25% reduction from the previous grant-from $1 million to $750,000 per year-for 40 ten-minute economics segments on the show each year, plus enhanced educational outreach through the Web, social networking sites and other media. The reduction reflects in part our diminished financial resources and in part it is a signal to The NewsHour that we expect them to take very seriously our suggested improvements to their Web site and our desire to more prominently feature Paul Solman on it. Support of this series gives us a direct line to Solman for suggesting topics and guests and provides the Public Understanding of Science, Technology, Business, and Economics Program with an outstanding and cost-effective vehicle for providing strong, consistent, economics coverage.

    For on-air and online coverage of economic and financial literacy on The PBS NewsHour

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  • grantee: University of California, Berkeley
    amount: $333,500
    city: Berkeley, CA
    year: 2009

    To improve understanding of copyright economics in the digital age

    • Program Economics
    • Sub-program Economic Institutions, Behavior, & Performance
    • Investigator Stephen Maurer

    The "copyright clause" of the U.S. Constitution empowers Congress "To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries." Digitization has made intellectual property issues like this so important that, for the first time, the President has appointed a "copyright czar" to serve in the White House. Students face huge fines for sharing songs over the Internet, for example. Incentives to create or share innovations appear threatened. And the proposed "Google Settlement" could (arguably) monopolize access to certain books, including "orphan works," as discussed at the recent meeting hosted by the Sloan Foundation on "Open Access and Dissemination of Knowledge" and a brief filed by the United States Department of Justice in the U.S. District Court reviewing the Settlement. How can research help? Whereas patenting has been studied extensively by legal scholars and economists, thorough theoretical and empirical analyses of copyright policy and its effects in the digital age remain yet to be done. To this end, Berkeley Professor of Economics, Law, and Public Policy-Suzanne Scotchmer-proposes to study the benefits, costs, and distributional consequences of potential solutions to a set of copyright problems. One is compulsory licensing by collective rights management organizations like Broadcast Music, Inc. (music performance rights) and the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers. This project will help provide theoretical foundations for a Sloan Foundation initiative that will sponsor further theoretical, empirical, and interdisciplinary research on copyright policy and information goods.

    To improve understanding of copyright economics in the digital age

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  • grantee: Consortium for Mathematics and Its Applications (COMAP) Inc.
    amount: $19,580
    city: Lexington, MA
    year: 2009

    To survey, inform, and plan improvements in education about finance and decision making

    • Program Economics
    • Sub-program Economic Institutions, Behavior, & Performance
    • Investigator Solomon Garfunkel

    To survey, inform, and plan improvements in education about finance and decision making

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  • grantee: National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    amount: $20,000
    city: Cambridge, MA
    year: 2009

    To develop a research program and data survey on the economics of the copyright system

    • Program Economics
    • Sub-program Economic Institutions, Behavior, & Performance
    • Investigator Scott Stern

    To develop a research program and data survey on the economics of the copyright system

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  • grantee: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
    amount: $20,000
    city: Cambridge, MA
    year: 2009

    To prepare and post a comprehensive data base for studying the effects of rent control

    • Program Economics
    • Sub-program Economic Institutions, Behavior, & Performance
    • Investigator David Autor

    To prepare and post a comprehensive data base for studying the effects of rent control

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  • grantee: Thurgood Marshall College Fund
    amount: $34,750
    city: New York, NY
    year: 2009

    To plan the launching of a program through which Thurgood Marshall College Fund universities would collect and analyze data on student retention and migration in STEM disciplines

    • Program Higher Education
    • Sub-program Science of Learning STEM
    • Investigator Rebecca Bennett

    To plan the launching of a program through which Thurgood Marshall College Fund universities would collect and analyze data on student retention and migration in STEM disciplines

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  • grantee: Committee on Capital Markets Regulation, Inc.
    amount: $120,200
    city: Cambridge, MA
    year: 2009

    To investigate the role of market discipline in regulating the risks taken by financial institutions

    • Program Economics
    • Sub-program Economic Institutions, Behavior, & Performance
    • Investigator Hal Scott

    To investigate the role of market discipline in regulating the risks taken by financial institutions

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  • grantee: National Academy of Sciences
    amount: $45,000
    city: Washington, DC
    year: 2009

    To develop a web site for Science and Entertainment Exchange

    • Program Public Understanding
    • Sub-program Film
    • Investigator Barbara Pope

    To develop a web site for Science and Entertainment Exchange

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