The Tool Foundry accelerator supports high-potential teams with prototypes for tools that meet real needs.
We are committed to promoting equity in all aspects of the Tool Foundry initiative. Teams with diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and experiences, including those from historically marginalized groups were encouraged to apply.
The accelerator is designed to bring together a diverse cohort of teams committed to expanding access to science. The strongest candidates are well-rounded teams who have tool prototypes, but need help to scale and sustain them.
The selection committee used the following criteria to evaluate teams.
Demonstrated ability of the team to develop the tool as proposed and scale it beyond the program timeframe.
- Growth potential.
Extent to which the team demonstrates awareness of gaps, openness to feedback, and commitment to advancing their tool and team.
Belief in the mission of expanding access to science; expressed interest in scaling the tool and developing additional tools to further address access to science.
We support tools that are low-cost, high-quality, and easy-to-use for scientific discovery. “Low-cost” may mean free, $5, or $50 — most importantly, the tool must provide a significant decrease in cost or increase in performance that expands access in a meaningful way.
Tools should be physical tools or hardware in the prototype stage of development. A prototype can be low-fidelity as long as it demonstrates what the tool will look like and how it will work.
The selection committee used the following criteria to evaluate tools.
Extent to which the tool has the potential to drive scientific exploration and meet the needs of a broad population of users.
Potential for the tool to be easily and affordably acquired or constructed; extent to which the tool addresses barriers to public participation in science.
Ingenuity of the engineering and/or approach; extent to which the tool is a departure from or improvement on what is currently on the market.
Extent to which the tool is high-quality, consistent, and can be effectively used for the proposed use cases.