Investments: Design, Start-Up, and Term Labs

The impact labs we invest in focus on social problems that faculty and practitioners identify as most urgent and where they believe there is the most potential to make progress. We do not have fixed areas of focus or social problems to tackle. We are designed to be agile, flexible, and responsive to the changing issues in society, priorities and concerns of external partners, and the shifting expertise and interests of faculty, staff, and students.

We make staged and sequenced investments to catalyze impact labs that bring leaders in government, business, nonprofits and the university together to tackle concrete, real-world social problems with new evidence and practical solutions.

Faculty Fellowship Zoom Problem Statement

Impact Lab Design Fellowship

We make one-year, $50,000 investments in faculty from across the university who want to conceptualize new impact labs through participation in our year-long Impact Lab Design Fellowship. The program provides training and mentoring for a cohort of faculty each year. Funding often pays for a portion of a research assistant’s time, and allows teams to conceptualize an area of problem-focused research, build partnerships with external collaborators, and plan to launch impact labs.

Meet our 2021-2022 Impact Lab Design Fellows and learn more about the work of last year's cohort.


Start-Up Impact Labs

We awarded our second round of Start-Up Impact Lab funding in 2020 to six scholar-practitioner teams. Each will receive two years of funding ($250,000 per year) and additional support to support meaningful partnerships, navigate operational challenges, and develop the skills and capabilities to apply research and evidence to real-world problems.

Our second round of  start-up impact lab funding for 2021-2023 has been awarded to:

We awarded our first round of Start-Up Impact Lab funding in 2019 to five scholar-practitioner teams:



Term Labs

We have not yet awarded term funding (expected to be $1 million per year for a fixed five-year term). When we do, it will go to impact labs that show the most promise and articulate a clear plan for generating, testing, and scaling solutions. Term labs will have maximum flexibility to allocate resources as they see fit, including to pay for professional staff, postdoctoral fellows, data collection, etc.