Shuttleworth Foundation Fellowships for Social Innovators 2025 views

Type of Funding





The Shuttleworth Foundation, a social investor, is offering Shuttleworth Foundation Fellowships to exceptional social innovators who are helping to change the world for the better, to help them implement their innovative ideas for social change. Applications are invited for the 1-year fellowship starting 1 September 2019. Fellowship grants are given for 1 year and Shuttleworth multiplies the money fellows have put into their own projects by a factor of 10 or more.

The Shuttleworth Foundation’s areas of interest are exceptional ideas at the intersection between technology, knowledge and learning, with openness being the key requirement, as the Foundation believes in a global open knowledge society with open data, open content, open access and open source, which will provide unhindered access to information, making it easier to find solutions to social challenges. Shuttleworth is specifically looking for ideas in areas that it has not yet invested in or not invested in multiple times.



The Shuttleworth Foundation Fellowship Program funding consists of 2 components for each Fellow – the fellowship grant and the co-investment project funding. The fellowship grant covers the cost of the Fellow’s time for 1 year and is guaranteed to the Fellow for that year. The grant amount varies and is determined by each Fellow’s salary equivalent outside of the fellowship.

The Fellowship Program is built upon co-investment project funding, as Fellows are rewarded for investing in their own ideas. An amount of US$250,000 is set aside per Fellow per year as potential project funding. For example, the Foundation agrees with the Fellow that the cost of his/her time for the year is US$1,000. As the fellowship year progresses, the Fellow decides to spend US$100 to advance his/her idea. The Fellow then takes US$900 home for the cost of his/her time and reinvests US$100 back into the implementation of the idea, and the Foundation will contribute at least another US$1000, giving the Fellow a project budget of US$1100. In other words, the Foundation tops up the Fellow’s own investment by adding at least 10 times as much funding from their project funding pool.

The investment coming partly from the Fellow themselves has a 2-fold effect;

Fellows are rewarded for the time and money they would typically invest in their own ideas as a free agent anyway by focusing their time and amplifying their funding; and fellows pay closer attention to the relationship between expenses and outcomes.


All changemakers from all over the world, regardless of gender, age, nationality or experience are eligible. The Foundation is looking for individuals with a fresh approach, to solving a social challenge. The proposal should consist of exceptional ideas at the intersection of innovation, technology, knowledge and learning and openness should be at the core of the proposed idea and/or its implementation.


Anyone could become a Shuttleworth Fellow, as no specific educational requirements are needed. They also do not need to have years of experience in the workplace or be up and coming millennials. They could be of any nationality, so long as they are proficient in English. Both individuals and organisations could apply, be they for profit or not for profit.

But applicants should be people with a clear sense of how they could contribute to changing the world for the better. They should be able to articulate the problem, and their idea should offer a fresh approach to addressing that problem. They have to express why they are most suited for this fellowship.

Fellows consist of anyone from college drop-outs to doctors (academic and clinical), students to professors, enthusiastic upstarts and seasoned veterans. They come from all over and work where they can make the most difference. The profile they share is one of openness, commitment and bravery.



Applications are to be done online by 1 June 2019.

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