Bakar Fellows - How to Apply

The 2021 applications are now open for the Bakar Fellows Spark Fund awards, for UC Berkeley faculty proposing projects with significant commercial potential. The 2021 program will award up to seven 2-year Spark Fund research development grants of up to $75,000/year. The awards provide discretionary funds for research in the STEM+fields (Engineering, Computer Science, Chemistry, Biological Sciences, Physical Sciences, and Architecture). The Bakar Spark Fund seeks to identify and catalyze research (even early stage) that holds commercial promise.  

After the successful completion of a two-year Spark Fund award, recipients will be eligible to compete for a Bakar Prize of up to $300,000 (one-time) discretionary support. 

Pioneered at UC Berkeley, the Bakar Fellows Program catalyzes commercialization of innovative research by supporting aspiring faculty-entrepreneurs and their research teams. Examples of successful Spark Fund outcomes include creating and licensing of intellectual property rights, new industry partnerships and/or the creation of a new company.

The general program parameters are explained in the FAQ.  

Using language suitable for a well-informed but broad audience, please address the following points in a 3-page application (1,000 word limit, including figures and references):

  1. What is the problem you are solving or the question you are answering?
  2. What is the advantage of your solution?
  3. Who will benefit from your innovation?
  4. What is your plan and timeline for commercialization of your innovation?
  5. How will the Bakar Spark Fund facilitate achievement of your goals?
  6. Identify a senior graduate student (4th or 5th year) or postdoctoral scholar who will team with you on your proposed Spark Fund project.

All UC Berkeley faculty members of the academic senate are eligible to apply.  Candidates are asked to upload their CV, a concise proposed budget, and completed application no later than March 1, 2021. 

If you have any questions, please contact .