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Accelerating discovery, inspiring dialogue, and fostering intellectual humility through academic research and public engagement.

By focusing on these select areas from 2019 through 2023, we hope to accelerate progress in topics that hold promise for advancing the frontiers of knowledge and understanding.

We will support exploration of the nature of religious belief and practice; we will invest in basic scientific research that could shape how we think about human existence; we will encourage theological and philosophical reflection on the fruits of scientific discovery; and we will ask whether certain virtues such as gratitude, curiosity, and humility contribute to human flourishing. Some of these areas are continuations of major investments previously made by the Foundation, while others represent new directions in our funding.

Across these priorities, the activities we support will take three distinct but complementary forms: first, research that aims to produce novel discoveries; second, public engagement that promotes dissemination of these insights; and third, programs that investigate intellectual humility and encourage its practice by fostering curiosity, open-mindedness, and civil dialogue.

Altogether, our investment in these 12 priorities will account for 80 percent of our grantmaking over the next five years in the Science & the Big Questions funding area, totaling approximately $325 million. At the same time, we will continue to accept innovative proposals that do not fit into these priorities in our Open Funding Track.

Strategic Priorities

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In addition to Strategic Priorities, we are also accepting submissions for an Open Funding Track.