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Fundraising Basics

Some basics of fundraising can be found here.

Potential sources of funding

At your institution

  • Biology, bioengineering and engineering departments or colleges
    • Submit a proposal to the department head or dean
  • Undergraduate research office
    • Students can apply for summer research funding
  • Establish yourself as a student club and get money from your student activities association
  • Tap into the community or social scene to sell items or raise funds with sponsored events like runs

From companies

  • Contact alumni from your institution who work at biotechnology or pharmaceutical companies. They can often refer you to the person who has the authority to make donations.

From a grant

  • Apply for a research or educational grant to support your team.


Generally to obtain funding, you will need some sort of handout, brochure or PDF to send to various people to support your request for funds. The nature of this document will vary depending on your target audience.

Some potential items to include (especially for documents sent to companies)

  1. Information and statistics on iGEM - number of schools/students etc.
  2. Context of competition: its history and growth
  3. Future and vision of the competition
  4. Short biographies of the team
  5. Attach media items regarding the competition

Proposals submitted to your department or college at your institution may need to include more project details than those submitted to companies.

Examples from other schools

Typical iGEM Expenses

  • Student stipends (generally at the standard undergraduate research assistant level for your university)
  • Travel costs
    • For instructors to attend the Teach the Teachers conference in Spring
    • For students to attend the Jamboree in November
  • DNA synthesis (~$0.99 per bp synthesized at Codon Devices)
  • Materials costs for the team
Personal tools
Past/present/future years