Prototype Fund

We Fund Open Source Prototypes in Public-Interest Technologies


Who can Apply?

IIITB Students (Full time students – IMTech 2nd – 5th Year, MTech 1st / 2nd Year, MSc DigiSoc 1st / 2nd Year, MS, PhD Students)

Your project is being published under an Open Source license. The code is publicly accessible, for example via Github or Bitbucket.

What does the Prototype Fund offer?

•Up to Rs. 50,000 in funding over six months.
•Professional coaching in user-centered design, project management, security and business, and mentorship by our expert network.
•Media outreach through our network.
Beyond offering the above, our goal is to grow a network of civic tech projects. During the project term, we’ll connect the participants with investors, potential partners and othersupport programs. Sustainability is very important to us and we want to help student-participants secure long-term support for their projects.

Which kinds of projects can get funding?

Public Interest Tech:building digital tools for citizens, e.g.
•New models or applications for creating, sharing and using (open) data
•Data visualization and storytelling
•Social engagement, transparency and citizen participation

Can I apply with a project that already exists?

Yes, you can. However, your proposal ought to be clearly defined and and have its own degree of novelty, e.g. you plan to expand or enhance yourpreexisting project with a new module. In any case, you need to make clear what you will be working on during the 6-month project term

By what criteria will my project be evaluated?

The jury will pay particular attention to the following:
•Does the project belong in the field promoted by the Prototype Fund; does is perhaps address the focus topic of the round?
•Scope and social impact of the project – How many people benefit from your project?
•Innovation – How new and exciting is your idea?
•Realizability – Do you have the necessary skills to implement the idea, and is the idea realizable within 6 months?

How is the grant sum made up and how does it relate to the total number of working hours?

The maximum grant of Rs. 50,000 is calculated on the basis of the total working hours of a full-time job for one person, i. e. 500 working hours at an hourly rate ofmax. Rs. 100 for the entire 6 month period.
As a full-time student, you should not work more than 3 hours per day on this project.
Important: The stated number of hours must be in reasonable proportion to the project idea. Think in advance about the time you will need to invest in order toimplement the proposed prototype. Realistic planning of the project scope is also one of the jury’s evaluation criteria.

Under which license do I need to publish the software that I develop during the funding period?

The software has to be published under an open source license. The code needs to be publicly accessible (through, for instance, a public GitHub/GitLab/Bitbucket repository). We recommend using the MIT license.

What can I expect during the project duration?

The Prototype Fund is also a research program: It is important to us to be in active exchange with our projects in order to understand even better how developers cooperate, how innovation is created, and where we can particularly support you on this path. For this reason, there will be update calls every four weeks, short written updates every two weeks, two more detailed interim meetings, and a sustainability evaluation – either in person or over the phone, depending on where
you live. We ask all projects to take the exchange seriously as well, because it allows us to address problems more quickly and help you when needed.

What are the payment modalities?

The grant will be paid in instalments based on the work carried out at the beginning of each month.

What happens after the project term?

At the end of the 6-month project term we invite all teams to take part in a demo day, which serves to present results/prototypes and to discuss achievements, challenges, and problems. Aside from the teams, we also invite selected guests to take part. All projects will be featured on our website. During the project term we will connect you with mentors, sponsors, and other participants. As a part of the Prototype Fund network, you will remain closely connected to the program even after your project term has ended. Apart from publishing your code in one of the repositories, you will need to write a short and clear project report that will be published as well.

Can I apply with several project ideas at the same time?


Can I get course credits for the work done under this?

No, the work done cannot be double-counted under FOSS Prototype AND a course project. However, additional development on existing projects done as part of course work can be proposed for FOSS Prototype funding.

Can I continue FOSS Prototype project as a part of my course work for credits?

Yes, additional development on completed FOSS Prototype projects can continued as part of course work (e.g., PE, Thesis, etc.)

Funding Criteria

The jury focuses particularly on the following criteria in its evaluation.


Frequently answered questions about Prototype Fund and related procedures.

Application Form

Are you an evangelist of Open Source and want to address Societal Issues? 

An Initiative of Dean’s Office of Research & Innovation, 21st Nov 2021

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