Request for proposals on engineering approaches to responsible neural interface design

Funding Agency:

The exploration of neural and neuromotor interfaces is growing both in academia and industry. With these technical developments come ethical questions about data management and privacy, diversity and inclusion, agency and identity, societal impact, among other topics. These questions require careful consideration both early and often in the process of research and development.

Facebook Reality Labs (FRL) has been exploring neural and neuromotor data as potential inputs for controlling augmented reality and/or virtual reality systems. In keeping with Facebook’s Responsible Innovation principles, the FRL research teams work to surface and consider neuroethical considerations in tandem with system design. As part of that effort, FRL is pleased to solicit proposals that leverage engineering to address the principles of considering everyone, putting people first by treating data with care, and providing controls that matter by developing tools and methods for data management and privacy.

To foster innovation in this area, and to deepen our collaboration with academia, Facebook is pleased to invite faculty to respond to this call for research proposals pertaining to the aforementioned topics. A total of up to five awards are available, worth up to $150,000 each. Payment will be made to the proposer’s host university as an unrestricted gift. Teams that are able to publish results are strongly encouraged to choose an open access academic journal.

Deadline: July 14, 2021

Agency Website

Eligibility Requirements

Awards must comply with applicable US and international laws, regulations and policies.

  • Applicants must be current full-time faculty at an accredited academic institution that awards research degrees to PhD students.
  • Applicants must be the Principal Investigator on any resulting award.
  • Organizations must be a nonprofit or non-governmental organization with recognized legal status in their respective country (equal to 501(c)(3) status under the United States Internal Revenue Code).



Funding Type





Engineering and Physical Sciences

External Deadline

July 14, 2021