Open Application for Project Financing
The mission of the foundation "Stichting NLnet" is supporting network
research and development in the domain of Internet technology based on
open standards and the Open Source philosophy.
One of the ways to accomplish this mission, is to financially support selected projects which potentially have positive impact on the wider dissemination and use of non-proprietary network and information exchange technologies.
Organizations, groups, individuals, or companies can apply for financial support if their project meets the following criteria:
- the project shall stimulate the use of network and information exchange technologies for peaceful and humane purpose;
- the project results must be freely distributed, as part of a (proposed) open standard or in the case of software and/or hardware based on an adequate free software/open source license;
- the project team is ready to undertake efforts to disseminate project results;
- the requested project contributions does not exceed the amount of 30.000€ and
- the project would not last much longer than about one year.
Even when your project meets the above criteria, the NLnet project selection committee reserves the right to reject the project proposal with or without reasoning, or to delay the contribution to a later moment.
Note that projects do not need to be technological in nature; also projects targeting to promote the wider use of non-proprietary network and information exchange technologies may get accepted.
The requestor may propose combined financing with a third party, when the project budget goes substantially above 30.000€, provided that such cooperation does not question the independent position of NLnet.
The above requirement --that project results shall be freely distributed based on Open Source principles-- does not necessarily mean that these results can not be commercially utilized. On the contrary: building up of profitable business on the project results is applauded.
It is appreciated if a separate plan is drawn for dissemination of project results. Where necessary, a dedicated dissemination budget can be outlined in the project plan.
The acceptance process normally followed by NLnet is described here:
|1||Proposal submission||Any time||See the website for calls|
|2||Primary selection||1st week||2nd week|
|4||Discussing and agreeing of project plans|
|5||Signing memorandum of understanding (contract)|
|6||Advance payment (if any)|
|7||Approving progress report / quarterly payment||quarterly||-|
|8||Final payment||after close-up||-|
This is described in more detail:
- Open applications for project financing can be submitted any time to the NLnet project selection committee via our web-based application form. However, the selection process starts only at the date announced on the website. Your proposal will not be rejected when it is received after these dates, rather the assessment of your proposal will be shifted to a next following selection round.
- In the first two weeks from the start of a selection round, the selection committee makes a first filtering based on the above outlined criteria. The project teams will be notified about the outcome of this initial selection in the third week of the round.
- The second selection round is used to pick projects which not only satisfy the criteria, but also have potentially the most impact on society. Project teams will be notified on the results of the second round as soon as possible. On this moment, the final answer is given whether NLnet intends to financially support (part of) the project.
- Subsequently there is a period for submitting additional detail and further negotiation on the project plans(*) and budgeting, as well as examining the memorandum of understanding between NLnet and the project submitter (see the sample MoU in PDF). This period might take longer if a third party participates in project financing. After that, the project memorandum of understanding will be signed.
- In some cases, an advance payment can be considered. If this is agreed in the contract, the first advance payment can be effectuated in a week time after signing the contract.
- Followup payments usually follow a quarterly schedule, where payments are effectuated after NLnet's approval of a quarterly progress report and/or progress meeting.
- The final payment is made after approval of a closing report of and/or a closing meeting.
(*) The project team submits a short (2-10 pages) project plan outlining the following topics:
- Introduction --short description of the project and goals;
- Description of innovation:
- the problem solved by this project;
- the relative advantage of the proposed innovation;
- usability: for whom and to what purpose;
- perspectives for further development of this innovation and/or other technologies.
- Project setup --organizational, technical, eventual partners, dependencies on other projects, licenses, and such;
- Project planning --milestones and related results;
- Project budgeting;
- Project risks --which risks can be overseen from the start of the project;
- Project results dissemination --how the project team is going to disseminate results and to whom, publicity, diffusion of the produced innovation;
- Possibly, follow-ups on the project.
Since dissemination is considered a critical issue new ideas about this promotion of project may result result in supplemental financing. This can be negotiated on the basis of an adapted (or new) dissemination plan, compiled by the project team.