In 2023, ASTC’s Community Science Initiative will provide direct support through three opportunities that each provide funding alongside professional development, networking, and strategic support for community science initiatives. Designed to support and scale a diversity of community science projects at different stages of development, each award has unique goals, requirements, and timelines. Briefly, the three opportunities are:
- ASTC-sponsored Thriving Earth Exchange Community Science Fellowships (open): A 12-month fellowship–starting either in spring or summer 2023–that supports individual professionals at ASTC member institutions who manage (or are interested in fostering) community science projects. Fellows will receive personalized strategic support and foundational training in planning and managing community science efforts. Individuals best suited to apply will have an existing community partner and a topic to address collaboratively. Up to $5,000 in funding is available to fellows after completing the initial virtual training to support a wide range of project needs. Applications for the June 2023 cohort are due May 10.
- Partnership Planning Seed Grants (closed): A six-month program beginning March 2023 designed for new or emerging collaborations between ASTC member institutions and community-based partners looking to deepen their relationship to advance local priorities. Partnerships should be in early stages of development, working to establish trust, identify shared goals, and design an actionable community science project. Grant recipients will receive $8,000, strategic training, and resources to develop a community science project action plan that could position them for other funding opportunities. Recipients will attend monthly calls with other teams and independently complete related assignments. Applications have closed. Read about the cohort here.
- Project Implementation Grants (coming soon): A 12-month opportunity launching in late 2023 for established partnerships between ASTC member institutions and community partners with well-formed and co-developed ideas for a community science project. Teams will receive up to $25,000 each to implement their project in addition to travel support to attend the program kickoff during ASTC’s annual conference. Applications are welcome from any ASTC members; past recipients of Partnership Planning Seed Grants will likely be well positioned to apply. Learn more about the opportunity here.
These opportunities are open to ASTC science center and museum members as well as allied members in North America, South America, and the Caribbean. All programming and materials will be conducted in English and in Western Hemisphere timezones.
Watch our recorded webinar for an overview of the 2023 funding opportunities and Q&A session with our participants.
Which Opportunity is the Right Fit for Me?
Before further exploring these opportunities, please review and its five approaches to community science: Dialogue & Deliberation, Community-driven Citizen Science, Open Innovation, Civic Engagement and Policy Making, and Participatory Research. These approaches are what distinctly differentiate community science (where you are actively working to further community priorities) and more general education and learning initiatives (where you may be working in partnership with a community but not necessarily toward specific shared goals). We then encourage you to answer the following questions to determine which funding opportunity may be right for you.
If you answer “yes” to all of the following questions, the ASTC-sponsored Thriving Earth Exchange Community Science Fellowships may be for you:
- Are you seeking a professional development opportunity for an individual employed at an ASTC membership institution?
- Does this individual seek to build competencies in community science?
- Does this individual have both an established relationship with a community partner and a topic they’d like to address?
Did you answer “yes”? Learn more and apply here!
If you answer “yes” to all of the following questions, the Project Implementation Grants may be for you:
- Are you applying as a collaborative partnership between an ASTC member institution and a community partner?
- Is your partnership well established?
- Do you have a well- and co-developed community science project idea that you are ready to implement?
Did you answer “yes”? Learn more here!
Still not sure? Reach out to ASTC’s Community Science team at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions or for additional guidance.
Not an ASTC member? Learn how to become one here.