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: Resources for the Future, Inc.
    amount: $202,264
    city: Washington, DC
    year: 2009

    To ensure that appropriate economic data will be collected and distributed concerning new policies for regulating Green House Gas emissions

    • Program Research
    • Sub-program Economic Institutions, Behavior, & Performance
    • Investigator Juha Siikamaki

    Reduction of greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S. will have significant impacts on our economy. There are strong positive and negative precedents for how to go about this. Powerful industry opposition to the transparent data collection and release was successfully overcome by prominent economists like Paul Joskow working through the Acid Rain Advisory Council. The thorough studies this made possible have helped make cap-and-trade for sulfur dioxide successful, most notably the definitive book Markets for Clean Air: The U.S. Acid Rain Program by Ellerman, Joskow, Schmalensee, Montero, and Bailey. Resources for the Future (RFF) has realized not only that it is critical to learn from past successes like this and build reporting requirements into the regulatory plans now being formulated, they have also recognized the need to train a new generation of scholars who will have a stake in monitoring and analyzing the data going forward many years. This project will also cooperate with an ongoing RFF study of how to measure carbon sequestration in forests that the Sloan Foundation has funded. Such grants do not necessarily signal the beginning of a full climate change program at the Sloan Foundation, but are consistent with our emphasis on promoting open access to information and enabling non-partisan policy relevant research.

    To ensure that appropriate economic data will be collected and distributed concerning new policies for regulating Green House Gas emissions

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  • grantee: Cornell University
    amount: $183,809
    city: Ithaca, NY
    year: 2009

    To develop, test, and propagate innovative Bayesian methods for estimating and regulating risks taken on by financial institutions

    • Program Research
    • Sub-program Economic Institutions, Behavior, & Performance
    • Investigator Nicholas Kiefer

    Nicholas Kiefer of Cornell University is developing new analytical techniques directly motivated by and applicable to the needs of effective international bank regulation. Specifically, the Basel Accords set standards for determining how much capital a bank should be required to keep in reserve to guard against financial and operating risks. There are two main approaches that statisticians use to estimate probabilities. Frequentists think of the probability of an event (say, flipping heads with a coin) as the long run proportion of repeated trials when it occurs. By contrast, Bayesian statisticians approach an estimation problem with subjective beliefs about the "prior probability" and then concentrate on systematically using whatever data becomes available to update their estimates. Through further consultations with practitioners, more research publications, continued work with graduate students, and the development of a course on Bayesian risk estimation in finance, this project stands to improve the understanding, management, and regulation of financial risk.

    To develop, test, and propagate innovative Bayesian methods for estimating and regulating risks taken on by financial institutions

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  • grantee: Business History Conference
    amount: $400,000
    city: Wilmington, DE
    year: 2009

    To establish a Ralph Gomory Prize in honor of Ralph Gomory for his 18 years of outstanding leadership of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation

    • Program Research
    • Sub-program Economic Institutions, Behavior, & Performance
    • Investigator Roger Horowitz

    At the December 11, 2007 Board meeting, the Trustees established an authorization of $400,000 to honor Ralph Gomory and authorize Ralph to develop a plan on how the authorization would be used. A plan was to be developed by Ralph Gomory. This grant to the Business History Conference will establish a prize to honor Ralph Gomory. The Ralph Gomory Prize will recognize historical work focused on the effects that business enterprises have on the economic conditions of a country in which they operate. Beginning in 2011, two prizes of $5,000 each will be awarded annually, one for a book and the second for an article, and may be for work published in the two years prior to the year of the award. The grant will be separated into an endowment and an advertising fund intended to be used up in the early years of the award to enhance its visibility and to generate nominations. The endowment portion of the gift shall comprise at least 85% of the principal and be invested such that the prize can exist in perpetuity. In any given year, expenditures from this endowment can exceed no more than five (5) percent of the value of the endowment at the end of the previous year.

    To establish a Ralph Gomory Prize in honor of Ralph Gomory for his 18 years of outstanding leadership of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation

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  • grantee: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
    amount: $250,000
    city: Washington, DC
    year: 2009

    To support the Carnegie Endowment's project to develop a voluntary code of conduct for nuclear reactor vendors

    • Program Research
    • Sub-program Energy and Environment
    • Investigator George Perkovich

    The Trustees will recall that the Foundation funded an MIT study called The Future of Nuclear Power a few years ago. That study has turned out to be extremely influential in the policy arena in the U.S. and Europe. For many months we have been looking into what more the Foundation might do in the area of nuclear energy and other nuclear technologies that would be useful and not duplicative of what other funders are doing. We have developed the following objective: To facilitate the strengthening or creation of institutional arrangements that enable nuclear technology and nuclear materials to be used for beneficial purposes (including power generation, research, medical uses and industrial purposes) with safety and minimal risk of nuclear terrorism or nuclear weapons proliferation. The focus on institutional arrangements would be the special perspective that the Sloan Foundation brings to the issue. There is wide agreement in the world that the rules governing the use of nuclear technology and materials, especially those associated with nuclear power reactors and their fuel cycle, need major revision to minimize the safety, security and proliferation risks intrinsically associated with these technologies and materials. However, there is no consensus among governments or others on what such revised rules should allow and constrain. Governments have been slow to move and international organizations cannot move ahead of what their member governments will agree to. The Carnegie Endowment for International Peace has been working for a year with the world's nuclear reactor vendors, including notably vendors from Russia, China, and Korea, as well as from the United States, Europe, Japan and Canada, to draft such a voluntary Code of Conduct. Carnegie and its partners have made remarkably good progress but they are far from done. They need at least another year to complete the job. Three more meetings are planned for 2010, one in Washington and two overseas. The estimated cost for the project through 2010 is $530,000. The Carnegie Endowment has commitments to cover $180,000 of this, including funds from the Hewlett Foundation which largely paid for the first year, and a $100,000 request pending with another foundation. They request $250,000 from us to enable the project to move forward in the manner and at the pace all participants prefer. This is an ambitious project and is not guaranteed to succeed. If it does succeed, however, as now seems likely, the resultant voluntary Code of Conduct would be a major achievement.

    To support the Carnegie Endowment's project to develop a voluntary code of conduct for nuclear reactor vendors

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  • grantee: American Academy of Arts and Sciences
    amount: $302,009
    city: Cambridge, MA
    year: 2009

    To identify and promote measures that will limit the security and proliferation risks inherent in the global expansion of nuclear power

    • Program Research
    • Sub-program Energy and Environment
    • Investigator Steven Miller

    This nuclear project is the Global Nuclear Future Initiative of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. The goal of this project is to identify and promote measures that will limit the security and proliferation risks inherent in the global expansion of nuclear power. Two important features of the project are that it has deeply engaged the U.S. nuclear utilities into these discussions for the first time and it is working hard to understand and incorporate the perspectives of non-nuclear weapons states, especially those that aspire to launch new nuclear power programs. The full cost of the project over the next two years is $1.3 million, of which $1 million has been raised from other foundations and a private donor. The American Academy has asked us for the balance, $300,000 over two years, specifically for the work on multi-national fuel cycle facilities and strengthening the non-proliferation regime.

    To identify and promote measures that will limit the security and proliferation risks inherent in the global expansion of nuclear power

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  • grantee: American Film Institute
    amount: $270,000
    city: Los Angeles, CA
    year: 2009

    For screenwriting and production of science and technology films by the top film students

    • Program Public Understanding
    • Sub-program Film
    • Investigator Joe Petricca

    This is a three-year renewal grant from the American Film Institute (AFI), one of the nation's leading film schools, to continue awarding tuition stipends, screenwriting and production awards for Science and Technology (S&T) films and to hold an annual S&T seminar. The film school program, supported for over a decade now, has been successful as measured by both quantity and quality of work. Beyond that, it is the cornerstone of our broader film program because it has created a growing body of work-and an emerging cadre of talented filmmakers-all focusing on S&T films. AFI has a unique status as a national film conservatory and their finished Sloan films, such as Skylab and The Monster and the Peanut, traditionally have the best production values and the most sophisticated "look" of all Sloan films. AFI has been very sensitive to the economic situation and this request is substantially lower than their previous request. The Foundation has supported this work at the American Film Institute since 1996 with total grants of $1,301,275.

    For screenwriting and production of science and technology films by the top film students

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  • grantee: Tribeca Film Institute
    amount: $700,000
    city: New York, NY
    year: 2009

    To develop new science and technology feature films for production and to showcase science and technology films and hold panels at the Tribeca Film Festival

    • Program Public Understanding
    • Sub-program Film
    • Investigator Beth Janson

    The Tribeca Film Institute (TFI) requests two more years of support for the TFI Sloan Filmmaker Fund and Retrospective Screening and Discussion Series. Our early partnership with Jane Rosenthal and Robert De Niro at the Tribeca Film Festival-of which we were founding sponsors-has yielded several high profile projects that helped establish our film credibility. Tribeca has shrewdly begun pulling together the most promising Sloan projects from other programs, as well as developing its own, to give us the strongest suite of film projects we've ever had. One example is Face Value-the Hedy Lamar story which originated at Tribeca, then went to the Hamptons and came back for a second Tribeca grant last year. It was at our Tribeca selection committee meeting that committee member Darren Aronofsky (Pi, Requiem for a Dream, The Wrestler) read Face Value and recommended his wife, Academy Award-winning actress Rachel Weisz, for the role of Hedy. By attracting people of Aronosky's caliber onto our committees-Marc Abraham (Children of Men, Flash of Genius), Sarah Green (Frieda, Girlfight), John Hart (Proof, Revolutionary Road), Caroline Baron (Capote)-Tribeca has catapulted Sloan into a front row industry seat. Face Value is slated to shoot in January 2010. $280,000 of this request would go directly to filmmakers, one reason for this program's effectiveness. Tribeca is an extremely strong performer, the lynch?pin of our screenplay development efforts, and is a well-regarded, high profile component of the Sloan Film Program. In addition to supporting the Tribeca Film Institute with its screenwriting development program, the Foundation has supported every Tribeca Film Festival since its inception in 2002, with total grants of $2,548,200.

    To develop new science and technology feature films for production and to showcase science and technology films and hold panels at the Tribeca Film Festival

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  • grantee: National Academy of Sciences
    amount: $250,000
    city: Washington, DC
    year: 2009

    Co-funding for a project on The Impact of Copyright Policy on Innovation in the Digital Era

    • Program Technology
    • Sub-program Universal Access to Knowledge
    • Investigator Stephen Merrill

    The Board on Science, Technology and Economic Policy (STEP) of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) requests co-funding for a project on The Impact of Copyright Policy on Innovation in the Digital Era. We have identified the issues surrounding copyright as critical to our program in Digital Information Technology and the Dissemination of Knowledge but the debate surrounding copyright has been informed by more heat than light. This is an effort by the NAS to bring a more rational and systematic approach to discussions of copyright by expanding research in this area and by identifying a community of researchers with interest and knowledge of copyright to inform broader policy discussions. They would begin by commissioning three background papers: 1) a review of existing literature on the costs and benefits of copyright and related Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) policies; 2) A baseline estimate of the magnitude and categories of U.S. economic activity affected by copyright together with a discussion of the range of business models dependent on its protection; and 3) a theoretical analysis of how copyright might stimulate or inhibit innovation, collaboration, and creativity. The project will also create a public Web site to post papers, comments, and other discussion items regarding copyright. In the spring, NAS would host a day and a half workshop to address and prioritize a range of research topics and methodologies. We are being asked to cover half of the budget. Several Sloan staff would attend this workshop because so little rigorous work has been done in this area, and we believe issues of copyright and intellectual property cut to the heart of our program in Digital Information Technology and the Dissemination of Knowledge.

    Co-funding for a project on The Impact of Copyright Policy on Innovation in the Digital Era

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  • grantee: Swarthmore College
    amount: $313,029
    city: Swarthmore, PA
    year: 2009

    To launch a multi-campus project to improve understanding of undergraduate student migration into and out of science, engineering, and mathematics disciplines

    • Program Higher Education
    • Sub-program Diversity, Equity & Inclusion in STEM Higher Education
    • Investigator Lynne Molter

    In recent years our small program to improve retention and graduation rates for undergraduate and graduate students in STEM disciplines has focused on encouraging campuses to obtain and use good data on STEM enrollments, migration, retention, graduation rates and time-to-degree. Using small officer grants, we funded three projects: At the American Society for Engineering Education, focused on engineering. They are now ready to pilot test a new data collection template. At the Association of Public and Land Grant Universities, focused on time-to-degree. They are now considering what their next step should be. At Washington University, focused on all of these issues for selective public universities, private universities, and private colleges. The latter project, with leadership now transferred to Swarthmore College, has sparked the desire to create and institutionalize a consortium of campuses that collect uniform institutional data and survey students in order to improve understanding of undergraduate student migration into and out of science, engineering and mathematics disciplines. The group will start by reviewing and revising, as appropriate, the data collection template and survey instrument that emerged from the previous, preliminary project. The participating institutions will then initiate regular collection and reporting of data and surveying of students. At this time, fifteen institutions have agreed to participate, many of which were also involved in the preliminary project. The consortium's executive committee continues to recruit additional institutions to participate. Because it is important to have a critical mass of participants, including within each category of institution, if this request is approved, we will not issue the first check until there are at least 16 committed institutions, at least five in each of the three categories: private colleges, private universities, and public universities.

    To launch a multi-campus project to improve understanding of undergraduate student migration into and out of science, engineering, and mathematics disciplines

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  • grantee: Science Festival Foundation
    amount: $600,000
    city: New York, NY
    year: 2009

    To support the third World Science Festival and to develop a strategic business plan for the future

    • Program Public Understanding
    • Sub-program New Media
    • Investigator Tracy Day

    The first two World Science Festivals (WSF), in which Sloan played the initiatory role and then was one of two key early funders, have been major successes. The 2009 WSF sold out virtually every event and achieved massive media penetration. The WSF embodies the Sloan program in public understanding of science and technology and employs many similar modalities. All the institutions of higher learning in New York, along with the major art museums, science halls, cultural centers and performance spaces, play host to this city-wide science festival and bring their traditional audiences into the tent. Co-founders Alan Alda and Brian Greene appeared as hosts and eloquent spokespeople for the value and impact of science in our culture. This new request, at the same level as the first two years, includes $100,000 to support two new Sloan events for 2010 plus $100,000 earmarked for the development of a three to five year Strategic Plan and Business Development Initiative that will focus on the long?term growth, expansion and stability of the World Science Festival. The Foundation has supported the Science Festival Foundation since 2006 with total grants of $1,345,000.

    To support the third World Science Festival and to develop a strategic business plan for the future

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