Apply to the Impact Lab Design Fellowship for Faculty

Do you believe that science has a role to play in addressing the world’s most pressing social problems? Are you motivated to work in partnership to implement research-driven programs and policies?


We are currently accepting applications for the third cohort of the Impact Lab Design Fellowship (ILDF). The fellowship is for Stanford faculty who are passionate about a social problem, see science as critical to addressing the problem, are motivated to engage in partnership work, and are eager to join a cohort of faculty working in parallel to leverage their research expertise to tackle challenging social problems. Fellows participate in a monthly workshop, receive $50,000 in seed funding, and benefit from the specialized attention of Stanford Impact Labs professional staff who provide input on problem definition, partnerships, and organizational design.

Fellowship Program: Once a month, fellows gather together for a three-hour, interactive, activity- and discussion-based workshop. These sessions are designed to engage faculty in identifying and refining their understanding of the problem and how their research contributes towards solutions; mapping and forging external partnerships and building a shared agenda of research; and developing an operational plan for giving life to their vision of impact and partnership. Workshops are led by professional staff and Stanford faculty, with guests that include outside experts and faculty and staff already working in this space. We have designed the workshops to be stimulating, engaging, and practically rewarding, guiding you closer to the creation of your own impact lab, or other pathways that will help you achieve your own vision of impact-focused research.

Applicants: The most important criteria we are looking for in fellowship recipients is a strong motivation to connect your research and demonstrated expertise with practical approaches to achieving public impact, and curiosity for how to best engage with partners to co-create strategies to address the particular social problem. Ideally, we are looking for candidates who: 

  • Are PI-eligible faculty (*required) 
  • Have a specific social problem you are interested in addressing
  • Have a track record of scholarship relevant to the problem area 
  • Hold a deep belief in the role of science as a tool for tackling social problems 
  • Are open-minded learners, flexible, and humble 
  • Demonstrate a strong sense of curiosity to engage with and learn from practitioners
  • Exhibit a desire to engage with and contribute towards a cohort of faculty committed to achieving outcomes outside of the university 

Application Process: Applications will be evaluated by a panel of SIL staff, Stanford faculty, and external practitioners. Those advancing will be invited to interview with the panel.


  • Monday, May 31 – Applications due 
  • Late June/early July – Virtual interviews conducted, for those advancing to the interview stage
  • Mid-July – Fellowship cohort selected
  • Fall Quarter, 2020 – Fellowship begins 

More information: If you are interested in learning more about the fellowship experience from a colleague who has already participated in the program, please feel free to reach out to members from our previous cohorts, posted on our website: 2019-2020 cohort & 2020-2021 cohort.

You are also invited to attend an Information Session to learn more about the program on: 

Questions? Review our FAQs. Want to talk more about this opportunity? Reach out to Karina Kloos:

Ready to apply? Download the application form here