2014/04/09 B3D Webinar: Funding

2014/03/26: corrected the registration link.

Margo Farnsworth will be hosting a webinar about her experiences seeking funding as an Executive Director and Senior Fellow of a regional watershed NGO and later as a university professor through individual asks and partnerships with the government, corporations, universities and later acquiring angel investors for her students.  The webinar will be held on April 9th at 07:00 PDT, 08:00 MDT, 09:00 CDT, 10:00 EDT, 15:00 BST, 16:00 CEST and 17:00 EEST.  Registration at https://business-hangouts.com/register.php?m=NjU3MHw4OTY1 is required. 

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nhoeller's picture

Notes from Funding Webinar

Margo Farnsworth presented her extensive insights and practical advice on fundraising based on real-life experience as an Executive Director and Senior Fellow of a regional watershed NGO and as a university professor.  The webinar includes a panel discussion expanding on some of the topics.  The link below takes you to the YouTube clip.  A PDF of Margo's charts including a list of resources is attached.

B3D Webinar: Funding

00:13 Introduction, panel and audience 
02:30 Story about using the right ammunition in your pitch
04:55 How to go about fundraising: where (broaden audience/services), ask (clarity of goals/strategies), follow-up
08:59 Where do we look: 60/40 split on existing sources vs. prospecting; cultivate for funds, contacts, partnerships, leadership
11:47 New resources of funding: "Chronicle of Philanthropy", pop culture (FastCompany, Kickstarter, corporate prizes), adjacent (geographic, cultural, professional) community partners, complementary/synergistic relationships
21:48 Asking advice: regular briefings to people with expertise and/or contacts, reducing expenses along with increasing revenue, 
24:30 How to ask: right place/person/time, special event opportunities
28:18 Follow-up: gratitude and celebration, timely reporting
31:38 Resources
32:54 Discussion

Discussion: (times are offsets into webinar)

32:54 Taryn: private sector/fee for services, asked for help in preparing a proposal in early stages of a project; Margo: getting ahead of the regulations

34:54 Ashok: researching funding, success ratio; Margo: determine typical success ratio to increase personal success ratio; Ashok: NSF success ratio about 16% overall, 8% for research proposals

37:33 Ashok: agencies want something revolutionary, review panels tend to be conservative, write proposal after 50% already done (demonstrate credibility) but propose new/transformative extensions

39:32 Ashok: government funding not expanding to keep pace with demand, shift towards private foundations/angel investors; Margo: now partnering with EPA to get funding through other agencies such as the Department of Energy, business, university/business partnerships through Ray Andersen's leadership

43:15 Fil: challenges of synchronizing academic and business schedules; Margo: ask for multi-year funding, keep trying multiple avenues and be persistent; Ashok: effort largely unrelated to size of ask - ask for more

50:30 Ray: new/emerging funding opportunities with shift towards a combination of delivering function-for-fee combined with social value, Pennsylvania/North Dakota organizations focusing on social impact of boom in resource development, Bay Area entrepreneurship values goals of NGOs but not necessarily their means, finding capital when people are hoarding capital

53:38 Margo: focus on what people need to survive (food, utilities, evolving connection to natural resources, disease/health), approach funder with opportunities to save money rather than just increasing revenue, write proposal through eyes of funder and their pressure points, look for synergy between business and ecology needs

59:42 Ray: is there interest in the larger impact of investment at the regeneration level vs. efficiency?  Taryn: growth of social entrepreneurship  in Bay Area now being taught in business schools, define purpose to structure organization and identify funding opportunities; Ray: new niche developing in the ecology sector, NGOs seen in some areas as an old model

Biomimicry B3D Spreading the Meme.pdf 300.48 KB
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Yaelhelf's picture

Horizon 2020

I didn't have the chance to raise another funding source I study these days. The Horizon 2020. It is the EU framework program for research & innovation with funding available over 7 years (2014-2020). I have located an appropriate channel for biomimetic projects, the FET (Future emerging technologies).  I know that usually the research partners should come from Europe but there are some exceptions. I wanted to ask if any of you have experience with this funding source or would be interested to learn more. I have more details.

Yael Helfman Cohen


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