- WHO IS ELIGIBLE FOR BENEFUNDER FUNDING?
- HOW MUCH DOES BENEFUNDER COST FOR A RESEARCHER?
- HOW MANY FACULTY MEMBERS AND RESEARCHERS HAVE JOINED BENEFUNDER?
- WHAT TYPE OF FUNDING DOES BENEFUNDER PROVIDE?
- WHO ISSUES THE GIFT CHECK?
- ARE BENEFUNDER'S GIFTS RESTRICTED OR UNRESTRICTED? WHAT CAN THE FUNDS BE USED FOR?
- HOW ARE GIFTS RECEIVED?
- DOES DONOR FUNDING IMPLY OR GRANT RIGHTS TO RESEARCHER'S INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY?
- ARE THERE ANY PUBLICATION RESTRICTIONS FOR BENEFUNDER-FUNDED PROJECTS?
- IS BENEFUNDER FUNDING SUBJECT TO INDIRECT OVERHEAD COSTS?
- WHO DECIDES WHICH RESEARCHERS RECEIVE BENEFUNDER FUNDING?
- HOW DOES A RESEARCHER JOIN BENEFUNDER?
- HOW DOES A RESEARCHER CREATE A RESEARCH PROFILE?
- CAN A RESEARCH PROFILE ACCOMMODATE A DIVERSE SPECTRUM OF RESEARCH ACTIVITIES AND DIRECTIONS? OR DOES THAT REQUIRE MULTIPLE RESEARCH PROFILES?
- CAN A CENTER WITH A SPECIFIC RESEARCH FOCUS SIGN UP OR DOES EACH RESEARCHER IN THE CENTER HAVE TO SIGN UP INDIVIDUALLY?
- CAN A RESEARCHER UPLOAD SOME OF THEIR OWN VIDEOS TO THE RESEARCH PROFILE?
- HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO CREATE A RESEARCH PROFILE?
- WHAT TYPE OF INFORMATION IS INCLUDED IN THE RESEARCH PROFILE?
- WHAT ARE THE CHANCES OF GETTING FUNDED?
- CAN RESEARCHERS RECEIVE MORE THAN ONE GIFT IN ANY ONE YEAR?
- WHAT ARE RESEARCHERS' RESPONSIBLITIES?
- WHAT DO DONORS TYPICALLY EXPECT IN RETURN?
- HOW LONG ARE RESEARCH PROFILES PRESENTED TO POTENTIAL DONORS?
- WHAT IF A RESEARCHER LEAVES HIS/HER UNIVERSITY?
- HOW DO RESEARCHERS/UNIVERSITIES THANK THEIR DONORS?
- DOES BENEFUNDER REQUIRE AN AGREEMENT WITH MY INSTITUTION?
- DOES BENEFUNDER SET UP AGREEMENTS WITH INSTITUTIONS? DOES BENEFUNDER WORK WITH AN INSTITUTION'S DEVELOPMENT, RESEARCH, AND/OR FOUNDATION OFFICE?
In order to be eligible for funding through Benefunder, a researcher must be i) an active researcher at a top university or research institute, ii) in good standing with his/her academic organization and iii) eligible to receive gift funds through their organization and its policies.
There is no cost to pre-register (see below). To join Benefunder, researchers pay a one-time fee to cover part of the Research Profile development cost. Benefunder subsidizes the costs; however, researchers are required to share the cost. The cost depends on the type of profile selected. To be included on the Benefunder platform, there is no annual or other recurring cost to the researcher. As a research program may change, nominal update costs may be incurred to update a profile, at the election of the researcher. To learn more about profile development costs and profile types, please contact Benefunder at firstname.lastname@example.org.
More than 650 faculty members and researchers (junior and senior) from more than 50 top universities and research institutes have joined Benefunder. Their research areas span the full spectrum, from arts and humanities, to health and life sciences, social sciences, physical sciences, engineering, education, and others.
Benefunder funding is a gift. It is neither contracted research nor a grant. The philanthropic gift is issued as a check for exactly the sum designated by the donor. University or research institute gift administration fees vary and may apply. Benefunder works with the appropriate offices to minimize these overhead costs.
The gift check is issued by the host Donor-Advised Fund (DAF) administrator, drawn from one or more donor accounts, as advised by the donor. A check for exactly the sum designated by the donor(s) is made out to the institution, designated to the researcher.
Benefunder gifts are restricted gifts to the university or research institute for the researcher. With respect to the researcher, they are unrestricted in use (e.g., undergraduate students, postdocs, salary, course reduction, travel, supplies, equipment, etc.) as long as they are applied to the program represented to donors.
Philanthropic gifts do not go directly to the researcher. They are processed through the academic organization's foundation, development office, or similar office like any other gift. In the accompanying gift letter, Benefunder will instruct an institution to allocate the funds to the researcher, center, or program identified by the donor.
No. Funds from Benefunder are philanthropic gifts. They do not convey any rights to researcher/university intellectual property.
No. Researchers may indicate Benefunder as a source of project support where applicable.
No. Funds from Benefunder are philanthropic gifts. They are not contracts or grants and, as such, do not incur indirect overhead costs.
Donors work closely with Benefunder and its advisory services to identify researchers and research programs that fit their interests and background. This process is driven by Benefunder's proprietary matching algorithms. If desired, donors may search Benefunder's entire database for specific researchers and/or research programs. Benefunder does not solicit or accept applications for grants for specific areas of research.
Researchers may apply for a Benefunder Research Profile by pre-registering. To pre-register, send an email to email@example.com with "Request Pre-registration" in the subject line. Benefunder will invite pre-registered researchers to join Benefunder during annual "Open Enrollment" periods, driven by donor demand. Benefunder may also match a pre-registered researcher with a donor and invite the researcher onto the platform, if researchers already on the platform are not a good match for that donor. To accept an invitation to join, researchers must enter into a Researcher Agreement. For more information about the Researcher Agreement, and detailed cost information, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Once invited to join, researchers work directly with the Benefunder editorial team to produce, review, and approve their Research Profile for publication and viewing on the Benefunder website. The Research Profile may include a video, depending on the type of Research Profile selected. To produce the video, researchers work with Benefunder's video director. A Premium profile does not include video. An Elite profile includes a 2-minute video.
While it is possible for a researcher to have multiple Research Profiles, one single profile can accommodate a diverse research portfolio. More specifically, the profile summary focuses on the researcher, their long-term vision, and a few ongoing activities (with guidelines on funding requirements) to excemplify this vision, while the profile's "Explore More" tab can be used to provide information about other ongoing research activities (with guidelines on funding requirements).
Benefunder can create a Research Profile for individual researchers and their programs, as well as collaborating teams of reserachers, and larger centers and educational programs with a specific research focus. So, a center specialized in a certain research area can sign up, as long as a center director is identified to i) represent the center (and provide a personal connection) and ii) manage the gift funds.
Yes, such videos can be added to the "Explore More" tab of the Research Profile.
Creating a Research Profile starts with assigning an editor to the researcher and setting up an interview time. The editor will ask the researcher to complete a short questionnaire, to help prepare for the interview. Once the questionnaire is complete, a 30-minute phone interview will take place. After the interview, the editor drafts the Research Profile, which is then shared with the researcher for review and editing. Once final copy has been approved by the researcher, a Research Profile gets posted on Benefunder and becomes visible to donors. this process takes about 1.5-2 hours of a researcher's time. Benefunder completes profiles in 3-4 weeks, assuming the researcher is responsive throughout the process. Video is produced and added to a Research Profile at a later date. Video requires a 1.5-2 hour in-person interview.
Benefunder requires basic information about the researcher, their affiliation, research programs, publications, and areas of professional or personal interest and background. Benefunder may derive this information directly or indirectly (third party sources). All information is considered non-confidential. Benefunder does not request or require confidential information from researchers.
Benefunder's sole mission is to fund research. Benefunder will use best efforts to match researchers' Research Profile to intersted donors according to stated donor interests, personal background, and engagement sought, for the purpose of facilitating donations to further a researcher's research program. Benefunder makes no claim or guarantee regarding the amount of donations a researcher's Research Profile might generate.
Yes. A researcher may receive more than one gift from one or more donors in any one year.
Once on the Benefunder platform, Benefunder asks that researchers convey any pertinent accomplishments in their research program that may be of interest to donors on at least an annual basis. More frequent communication and other relevant program news is encouraged as part of general stewardship of the gift. Communication is accomplished through a web-enabled portal for donors to review their gifts and for researchers to post news and other updates.
Benefunder provides funding for research through gifts. As opposed to contracts and grants, gift funding does not require deliverables. That said, Benefunder connects donors and researchers to catalyze longer-term relationships, engaged by stewardship and providing recurring, annual donations. The engagement between the donor and researcher can vary, depending on what both are interested in -- from an update every couple months to an open house exposing research activities, to first-hand updates on tech transfer and start-ups, an extended residency in the lab, or name recognition. Benefunder will match donors and researchers with similar interests in how to engage.
As long as researchers keep their Research Profile up-to-date, Benefunder will include the profile in its database for presentation to potential donors. In other words, if updated, a Research Profile never expires.
Benefunder works within the guidelines of a researcher's institution to determine whether departing faculty are allowed to take gifts to their research with them. In cases where they are not, Benefunder will work with the donor(s) and institution to direct the remainder of any one gift to programs of similar interest.
First and foremost, thanking donors is best done by promptly reporting research accomplishments and other newsworthy events to donors through the donor's gift portfolio portal -- the virtual stewardship mechanism that allows researchers to communicate to their donor(s). Benefunder preserves the anonymity of its donors unless otherwise instructed by its donors. See Benefunder's privacy statements below.
At many institutions, a Benefunder gift does not require a special institutional agreement other than working with the Institution's standard gift agreement. To receive your Benefunder gift, Benefunder will work with your academic organization's foundation, development office or similar office, to process your Benefunder gift agreement and transfer funds.
Yes, Benefunder is happy to have a conversation with your institution's administration to set up a Research Institution Agreement that creates a more broad partnership arrangement.