| How to Apply
The Comcast Innovation Fund uses grant management software from Fluid Review to manage each stage of the application process. Before applying we recommend you read the guidance we have provided below. When you are ready to apply, you will need to:
- Create a Comcast Innovation Fund account.
- To create a new grant application, click the "View Applications" button.
- Then click "Create Submissions" and follow the directions to complete your application. It can be held in a draft state for however long you wish before final submission to us.
GET STARTED - COVERING THE BASICS
The application process for a Comcast Innovation Fund grant is designed to be quick and easy.
- You'll need to tell us about the leader researchers/principal investigators, including a CV or resume for the researcher(s) or developer(s). Each CV should not exceed two pages.
- Selected the type of grant you are seeking
- Describer the project, what area it is in, and what it will accomplish
- If your research would benefit from access to Comcast's confidential data, please submit a data management statement outlining how any such Comcast confidential data would be used and protected. It is important that any data is anonymized so no individuals or entities are identifiable as a result of the research. Comcast will consider these requests in due course, but is under no obligation to provide access to any data. If Comcast elects to provide any data access in connection with this program, such access will be contingent on signing a data access agreement in the form specified by Comcast.
- Basic details of the proposed use of the grant and the total amount of the proposed grant. We do not anticipate individual grants exceeding $150,000.
- Do not submit any materials you believe are confidential, because you have no expectation of confidentiality in the submission process except with respect to your personally identifiable information.
- Finally, please specify any previously funded Comcast research that you may have conducted and include results, published articles, etc.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
- Are these expected to be one-year or two-year projects?
We only support one-year projects. We will sometimes consider multi-year projects but will only fund one phase at a time with no guarantee of continued funding.
- Do you have any limitations on how the budget is used or on indirect costs? Can we put administrative overhead for the university in as "other" expenses (e.g. paid faculty such as researchers and assistants, overhead costs for the university, etc.)?
The proposal needs to describe how the budget is going to be used, so we cannot support indirect costs. Overhead pay and "other expenses" is not permissible. Please put the faculty and research assistants into one figure.
- Can we modify our monetary requests?
Yes, you can login and update your application, though this may be limited during some phases of the review process.
- Are funds open to applicants outside the United States of America?
Yes. Grant funds are available globally to researchers both within and outside the U.S.
- What time of year does the fund accept new submissions?
Funding is available year round on a rolling basis, so you may apply at any time.
- Does Comcast only fund research related to fixed networks, or does it accept research related to wireless & cellular networks as well?
Comcast is interested in a wide range of networking technologies, so there's no need to limit it to technologies pertinent to our existing businesses.
- Do Comcast Innovation Fund gifts require Purchase Orders (POs)?
POs are not required. However, you must create and submit an invoice and sign other paperwork, such as an acknowledgement of the grant.
HOW TO WRITE A SUCCESSFUL GRANT PROPOSAL
Your proposal will be reviewed by the Innovation Fund Steering Committee at Comcast, representing a wide range of disciplines and functions. Below are some suggestions to help you create an effective proposal.
- Be specific about what you want to achieve.
Your proposal should include a clear and well-defined problem statement. Clearly state what you want to achieve and how you will do so. Also, let us know if the funding you seek is part of a larger project, or one which is funded elsewhere. This is not necessarily an impediment, but it is important for us to know.
- State how the funding will be used and why your proposal should be chosen.
Describe the potential outcome of your research or development, including what specific areas require funding and how the funding will be applied. For example, will your research provide incremental progress along a given technical trajectory, or is it revolutionary? Likewise, if your proposal relates to open source, please indicate when the software will be available, how widely might it be used or distributed (and whether it scales), which open source license governs the software, and whether you are a project committer resourced to contribute code. Also, explain any best/worst-case outcomes.
It is important to indicate in the proposal if you will require access to Comcast-specific data or technical requirements. If so, please be advised that privacy is a very important part of how we do business. As such we will need to ensure that any requested data will not compromise our subscribers' privacy in any way. Any requested data also may be subject to applicable laws or end-user policies.
- Explain how your work is different or unique relative to the state-of-the-art in your field of R&D.
While your ideas may be clear to you, please bear in mind that the individuals who review your application may not be experts in your specific field. Therefore, it is critical to provide an explanation that helps both experts and non-experts understand what your research can offer that's not already out there.
- Explain how you will carry out the research or development.
In addition to clearly identifying the problem you plan to investigate, it will be beneficial to describe how you intend to carry out the research or development. In doing so, please identify the risks you may encounter, and how you might mitigate them. In R&D, failure is often a form of progress, so it's important to record the challenges you encounter in your work.
- Comcast Liaisons.
In the event you are selected to receive a grant, Comcast may assign an internal project liaison to interface with you. If you have worked with Comcast technical personnel on related research or technical projects, please feel free to identify such personnel as potential liaisons in your submission.
- All of the above matters.
As you draft your proposal, remember that you are selling an idea. Be complete, but refrain from providing an amount of detail that may bog down individual and group reviews. Be enthusiastic. It can be contagious, and you want the review committee to be enthusiastic, too. Finally, if the funds need to be in a currency other than U.S. Dollars, please indicate that in your submission.
CONFIDENTIALITY AND USE POLICY
Please refer to our policy on this page.