Open Philanthropy Project Fund: Grants for Science Research

OVERVIEW: The Open Philanthropy Project has not yet identified a specific focus area for science research. However, it’s currently exploring life and social sciences.

IP TAKE: While grants from the Open Philanthropy Project are sizable, those seeking grants will likely have a difficult time as this funder has a very specific selection process.

PROFILE: The Open Philanthropy Project (OPP) is a joint venture between Good Ventures and Give Well. While OPP is not an organization in and of itself, it does recommend grants to the OPP fund, which is a DAF of the Silicon Valley Community Foundation. It is a bit confusing, but the OPP fund makes some pretty sizable grants out of its current portfolios and its science research priority is currently in the exploratory phases. OPP is definitely one funder to watch closely in this space.

OPP is currently considering funding life sciences research, including but not limited to Breakthrough Fundamental Science, improving policy and infrastructure, and what it refers to as neglected goals in scientific research.  

Grants are sizable, typically ranging from $300,000 to $3 million. Unsurprisingly, the fund does not award a lot of grants each year and most go to larger, well-known organizations. Of course, there is no way to predict if this pattern will hold for its science research funding. In the meantime, learn more about OPP fund grantees by exploring its grants database.

OPP is not the most transparent funder. According to the foundation, those who identify grantmaking opportunities for OPP are primarily GiveWell staff and Cari Tuna, president of Good Ventures. OPP does not accept unsolicited grant applications or requests for funding.


  • Cari Tuna, President, Good Ventures
  • Holden Karnofsky, co-Executive Director, GiveWell
  • Elie Hassenfeld, Managing Director OPP and co-Executive Director, GiveWell
  • Howie Lempel, Program Officer, Global Catastrophic Risks
  • Jaime Yassif, Program Officer, Biosecurity and Pandemic Preparedness