Science

RFA LAUNCHED 9/18//2018

SEED NETWORKS FOR THE HUMAN CELL ATLAS

The Helmsley Charitable Trust and the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI) are collaborating to support the continued development of the Human Cell Atlas, an international effort to map all cells in the human body. Applications open September 18, 2018.

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RFA LAUNCHED 9/5/2018

IMAGING SCIENTISTS

This program aims to accelerate biomedicine by improving microscopy tools and facilitating better collaboration between biologists and technology experts. Applications open September 5, 2018.

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Mission | Approach | Policies | Projects | Team | Questions | Funding

Supporting the science and technology that will make it possible to cure, prevent, or manage all diseases by the end of this century.

We launched our science program in September 2016 with the mission to support the science and technology that will make it possible to cure, prevent, or manage all diseases by the end of this century. That doesn’t mean that no one will ever get sick, but it does mean that doctors will be better able to detect and treat illness, so future generations spend less time being sick. As we make progress toward this goal, we are guided by the following values:

People. In every field, and especially in science, talented and motivated people move the field forward. Supporting scientific excellence and creativity is the most effective way to drive progress.  

Technology. New tools enable new discoveries — especially tools that are reliable, robust, scalable, and sharable. Creating and disseminating high-quality technology will improve all of science.

Collaboration. Progress accelerates when people work together, within and across fields. Interdisciplinary teams of experimental biologists, computational scientists, engineers, physicians, and patients can dramatically expand our understanding of the human body and illness — the science behind the medicine.  

Open science. The velocity of science and pace of discovery increase as scientists build on each others’ discoveries. Sharing results, open-source software, experimental methods, and biological resources as early as possible will accelerate progress in every area.


Mission | Approach | Policies | Projects | Team | Questions | Funding

OUR APPROACH TO SUPPORTING PROJECTS

Science Team

We are a new organization and we have a lot to learn. However, we believe that collaboration, risk taking, failing fast, and staying close to the scientific community are our best opportunities to accelerate progress in science. In service of these beliefs, the following principles guide our work:

We help accelerate science.To advance toward solving all diseases, we must accelerate biomedical discovery. Our approach is to support open, collaborative and networked models of research, and to develop transformative new technologies. Collaboration is the key to success, and technology is our differentiated impact.

We fund — and we build. By funding research done by great scientists, we can make a direct impact on specific scientific and medical goals. By building technology through the work of our own computational biologists and software engineers, we can enable scientific discovery across the entire scientific community. We pair these approaches by working side by side with our collaborators in the scientific community. All tools that we build and fund will be freely available for all non-commercial uses, including pre-commercial use by for-profit entities.

We support collaborations between science, medicine, and engineering. By encouraging close collaboration between basic scientists, physicians, computational scientists, and engineers, we will enable breakthroughs that grow from their combined expertise. To that end, we will support new incentives, rewards, and career paths for collaborative research.

We develop tools and technologies. We work closely with the scientific community to support transformative technologies to empower and advance all of science. Our computational biologists and software engineers work with scientists on the ground to identify challenges and build open-source tools for analyzing, visualizing, and sharing data, using cutting edge engineering, data science, machine learning, and cloud computing approaches.

We build support for science. We are part of a movement to support basic scientific research. That means recruiting more private and public funders, working with policymakers and advocates, and supporting grassroots public engagement in science. With government, industry, academia, the philanthropic community, and patients and their advocates working together, we will win our fight against disease.

We don’t have all the answers, and we continue to learn along the way. We actively seek the advice of scientists, physicians, national and international science funding organizations, engineers, patients and their advocates, and experts of every kind. We believe that collaboration, risk taking, failing fast, and staying close to the scientific community is our best opportunity to accelerate progress in science.


Mission | Approach | Policies | Projects | Team | Questions | Funding

Our Policies

We use a variety of mechanisms to support science, including targeted grantmaking as well as open competitions in specific areas (Requests for Applications). We prioritize supporting research communities and not just individual researchers, so we support workshops, hackathons, and travel that enables collaboration among our partners. In supporting these efforts, the following policies govern our work:

Software. We will release software developed by our own team and our funded partners under maximally permissive open-source licenses, and develop software collaboratively in the open through sites like GitHub.

Intellectual Property. We do not request rights to IP developed by our partners. However, any IP generated by a CZI-supported investigator and/or as part of a CZI-funded research project must be made freely available for all academic and non-commercial uses, including pre-commercial use by for-profit entities.

Data Sharing, Maintenance, and Security. We support open sharing of data, because it lets scientists build on each others’ work to make new discoveries, faster. We are committed to the long-term sustainability of our projects, and when needed, we will ensure long-term data access through permanent archives. In all projects involving human subjects, we will work with our external partners and with regulatory groups to support data privacy and security, and ensure that data requiring protection or controlled access are handled in agreement with national and international standards.

Publication. We support full publication without conditions or restrictions. We strongly encourage, and in some cases, may require, researchers to deposit manuscripts as preprints before peer review to increase access to research findings and to communicate results more quickly.

Ethics.  We hold ourselves and our scientific partners to the highest ethical standards. We require compliance with institutional and national standards for human subjects research and non-human animal research. In addition, we have specific policies addressing scientific misconduct, attribution of credit, respectful treatment of all persons without discrimination, and responsible use of grant funding.


Mission | Approach | Policies | Projects | Team | Questions | Funding

Initial Projects

We believe good ideas can come from anywhere. We choose projects by engaging deeply with the scientific and medical communities to identify unmet needs and barriers to success. We learn by reaching out to leaders formally, through meetings and workshops, and informally. Some leaders are found in scientific societies, government agencies, disease foundations, the biotechnology industry, and philanthropic foundations. Some leaders are young visionaries who are still in training. With their advice, we identify projects that align with our goals and values: collaboration is the key to success, and technology is our differentiator.

Our initial investments are outlined below:

Chan Zuckerberg Biohub

Human Cell Atlas

Chan Zuckerberg Meta

Knowledge Environments

Neurodegenerative Challenge Network

Workshops


Mission | Approach | Policies | Projects | Team | Questions | Funding

Leadership

Cori

Cori Bargmann

Head of Science

Cori Bargmann, an internationally recognized neurobiologist and geneticist, leads our science work. Dr. Bargmann is also the head of the Lulu and Anthony Wang Laboratory of Neural Circuits and Behavior and the Torsten N. Wiesel Professor at the Rockefeller University in New York. Dr. Bargmann is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the American Philosophical Society. She received the 2012 Kavli Prize in Neuroscience and the 2013 Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences, among many scientific honors. She also co-chaired the National Institutes of Health committee that set goals and strategies for President Obama’s Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies (BRAIN Initiative). Dr. Bargmann is a former Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator and holds a Ph.D. in Biology from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Team

Arne Bakker
Manager, Scientific Meetings and Reviews

Sidney Bell
Computational Biologist Intern

Katja Brose
Science Program Officer

Elizabeth Caley
Chief of Staff, Meta

Anne Claiborne
Health Policy Lead

Nina Cardoza
Manager, Grants and Operations

Andréa Clavijo
Event Planning Associate

Jonah Cool
Science Program Manager

Leah Duran
Manager, Science Communications

Jeremy Freeman
Director, Computational Biology

Deep Ganguli
Computational Biologist

Jonathan Goldman
Head of Data

Fiona Griffin
Programs Associate

Genevieve Haliburton
Computational Biologist

Sandra Liu Huang
Head of Product and Engineering

Jeff MacGregor
Director, Science Communications

Marc Malandro
Vice President, Operations for Science

Bruce Martin
Director of Engineering

Ed McCleskey
Science Program Officer

Sam Molyneux
General Manager, Meta

Sandra Moreno
Executive Assistant

Kevin Moses
Science Program Officer

Meagan Mnich
Executive Assistant

Tania Simoncelli
Director, Policy for Science

Phil Smoot
Head of Engineering

Nicholas Sofroniew
Computational Biologist

James Wang
Director of Engineering

Science Advisory Board

We can’t do this alone. Our Science Advisory Board informs our priorities and allows us to draw on a wide range of expertise as we shape our strategy, establish partnerships, and develop scientific projects. Members of our Board include:

Tobias Bonhoeffer
Max Planck Institute of Neurobiology

David Haussler
University of California, Santa Cruz

Arthur Levinson
Calico

Molly Maleckar
Allen Institute for Brain Science

Yuri Milner
DST Global

Shirley Tilghman
Princeton University

Robert Tjian
Howard Hughes Medical Institute and the University of California, Berkeley

Harold Varmus
Weill Cornell Medical College

Huda Zoghbi
Howard Hughes Medical Institute and Baylor College of Medicine


Mission | Approach | Policies | Projects | Team | Questions | Funding

Questions?

For more information about our work in science, please review our frequently asked questions or follow us on Twitter. You can also contact us at science@chanzuckerberg.com. For press related questions, please contact press@chanzuckerberg.com. To stay updated on funding opportunities, join our mailing list.

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