XR30

Applications

The XR 2030 Policy Fund will explore public policy issues raised by this emerging technology.

Proposals may assess a key challenge or opportunity raised by the technology, propose possible policy interventions, or — ideally — both. Proposed interventions can be, but need not be, limited to changes to law or regulations; rather, they might help galvanise a range of solutions that inform advocacy and support policy objectives. Regardless, we will evaluate proposals based on their feasibility, potential impact, and novelty (i.e., whether it makes a fresh or innovative contribution to the topic), and we will prioritise interdisciplinary research.

We expect to consider grants focusing on shorter term policy analysis and research projects, as well as in-depth research and advocacy projects spanning 6-12 months. We anticipate grants will fall into three broad types of work:

Small
Grants

To researchers, independent writers and PhD students to support case study development and analysis. We anticipate these grants will be under $10,000 and have shorter timelines.

medium
grants

To civil society organisations, research teams, or research institutions to support targeted research and advocacy efforts. These grants will range in size from about $25,000 – $50,000 and we anticipate project timelines will average about 6 months.

large
research and
advocacy grants

To civil society and larger research institutions to support wider-ranging projects utilising innovative research to inform advocacy and start policy conversations. The maximum size of these grants will be $100,000 and we anticipate the project timelines will span 6-12 months.

Applications are now open! Submit your application now.

XR is an emerging area, and we will not limit review of proposals to a bounded list of problem-and-solution spaces. However, key areas that we hope to explore include:

Trust & Safety:

The real-time, synchronous, immersive and embodied nature of experiencing XR will challenge our existing understanding of how to address content and behavior online.

How will XR platforms ensure the safety and security of users on the platform?

Given the scale of real-time interactions, will a more community-driven form of moderation be required?

What will be necessary to support both platforms and communities in addressing harmful content and behavior?

Conversely, how might XR be designed to enable or encourage certain values — e.g., empathy and comity?

Data Privacy & Security:

XR technology will collect data measuring physiological response to stimuli, and allow XR apps to engage with and respond to that data.

How will user data be protected and what privacy rights will users have over their experience on these platforms?

How might surveillance advertising evolve in an XR environment?

What are the implications of increased collection and use of biometric information?

Health & Physical Effects:

XR will mean wearing a device that interacts with the human sensory system in more significant ways than previous computing devices.

What health impacts — mental health, physical health — should we expect will arise from wider adoption of XR technologies?

Will the health concerns associated with social media today (e.g., distraction, disassociation, addiction) become even more pressing with the adoption of XR?

Conversely, given early evidence about the ways that XR might help medical professionals, what policy frameworks are necessary to facilitate positive deployment of XR in supporting health?

Creators & Labour Issues:

XR services will intermediate and govern relationships with creators and businesses in new ways.

If XR means a worker can be paid for labour in performing a service intermediated by an XR platform, what rights and protections does that worker have?

How will creators who build on top of these platforms be empowered?

Will users own the rights to things they create on these platforms?

Competition, Interoperability & Standards:

XR holds the potential to become a more open ecosystem, but could also consolidate around a few platforms, as today’s web has.

What are the possible implications of platforms developing in walled-gardens during the emerging phases of XR environments?

What will ensure competitiveness between and within these platforms, and ensure users don’t get unduly locked in to any one ecosystem?

Infrastructure:

XR technology will require continued improvements in broadband infrastructure, including mobile networks.

How will broadband policy evolve to address these needs?

Governance & The Digital Public Square:

XR platforms are being built by companies, but even some of these refer to their creations as “societies.”

Will XR environments be predominantly commercial, or will there be the equivalents of the public square (e.g. public parks, libraries, and other civic spaces)?

What are the ways such spaces can be incentivised and governed?

Inclusion:

Like all technology, XR is being built by a subset of humanity which is not reflective of society as a whole.

How will XR platforms be made accessible, including to those with disabilities?

How will these platforms be held accountable for including diverse viewpoints and user needs in the development of XR technology?

Requirements

Please read the requirements carefully to prepare your application. We are now accepting applications.

We expect your application to include:

  • a clear statement of the problem you are investigating;
  • a description of the current landscape in this area;
  • a description of your proposed project;
  • an assessment of how your contribution will be feasible, novel, and impactful;
  • how your expected impact contributes to an overall theory of change to shape XR and support public interest values; and
  • a project plan and budget rationale;

We expect this to be no more than 1500 words, although you are free to include additional detail in an appendix.

Please also include, separate from the 1500-word application, detailed biographies and backgrounds of the team and, if relevant, your institution. These should include links to relevant prior work.

Once we receive your submission, we will evaluate it, including by working with our Advisory Panel of experts in this emerging field.

If you would like to receive updates from the XR30 Fund, please join our mailing list below.

Application Form

Please complete the following fields and attach a single file containing your 1500-word application, as well as the detailed biographies and backgrounds of the team, and any relevant work.

Drop files here to upload