Accelerating Research on Consciousness (ARC) Request For Proposals - Webinar 1 (video)

By Templeton Staff
December 9, 2021
An informational webinar about TWCF's Request For Proposals for scientific research to further understanding of consciousness.

The Accelerating Research on Consciousness (ARC) initiative at Templeton World Charity Foundation (TWCF) is now offering a new request for proposals for scientific research. TWCF seeks to fund up to 15 projects that will produce new scientific evidence to further understanding of consciousness. Dawid Potgieter, D.Phil., TWCF Director, Programs in Discovery Science led this webinar on December 8, 2021, to outline the proposal request. The webinar explains who should apply, and how to preregister per the Open Science Framework.

Learn more about the Request for Proposals on the ARC RFP web page, and be sure to watch the webinar replay above for detailed information. A second webinar to answer last-minute questions happens January 18, 2022.


  • Projects must be rooted in a broad understanding of the current academic literature on consciousness. To promote novel ideas, applicants are encouraged to integrate or contrast more than one tool, method, or theoretical approach.
  • At least some of the project funds must contribute toward scientific research that could contribute new evidence to the field. Each project description must feature a key experimental research question. 
  • Applicants are encouraged to contextualize their research questions within a rigorous conceptual framework. A clear operating definition of consciousness should be included in the project description and should be consistent throughout the project.
  • All finalists will have to pre-register their project descriptions on the Open Science Framework before an award can be made. By submitting a proposal, applicants agree to do this as required.
  • Applicants should exclude their names and affiliations from the project description document. TWCF intends the external review process to be double-blind, but will not be able to anonymize these documents once submitted.

Key features of this request:

  • To help applicants with the required pre-registration process, two webinars featuring information on the Open Science Framework and the preregistration process are offered.
  • All proposals will be reviewed internally by TWCF staff. Up to fifty leading proposals will be sent for external review.
  • In recognition that external review scores are a useful but imperfect predictor of project quality, we will include the following partially random down selection step: Applications with below-median review scores will be declined. Applications above the median will have an expected funding rate of 50% and will be down-selected randomly before being presented for approval.

Process and Timeline:

  • Launch Date: November 22, 2021

  • Webinar Exploring Scope and Application Process: December 8, 2021

  • Webinar for Last-Minute Questions Regarding Submission: January 18, 2022, register here.

  • Submission deadline: January 28, 2022

  • Announcement of finalists: March 22, 2022

  • Announcement of awards: June 6, 2022

  • Earliest start date: August 6, 2022

  • Project duration: 12 - 24 months

  • Maximum award amount: $200,000 direct costs + $30,000 indirect/overhead (This can contribute to direct costs if allowed by the institution.)


July 12, 2021

Accelerating Research on Consciousness with Lucia Melloni and Christof Koch (video)

We know that we are conscious but we don't yet know how or why. The subjective nature of consciousness makes it difficult to study because only the...

Read More
Scientist looking at electronic tablet
September 30, 2020

What Our New Open Science Policy Means for the Future of Research

We are at the beginning of a new, five-year strategy to support scientific research on human flourishing, and as part of that, Templeton World...

Read More
Two people looking at charts
March 9, 2020

Want To Accelerate Scientific Breakthroughs? Reward Scientists For Disproving Their Own Theories

When Albert Einstein first published his theory of special relativity in 1905, it shook physicists’ understanding of the universe to its core...

Read More