The applications for the 2024 Cohort 4 of Breakthrough Energy Fellows are now open. The foundation, established by Bill Gates, is looking for early-stage startups with innovative climate technology for its Innovator and Explorer programs.
Candidates can apply until Nov. 8, 2023, by submitting a concept paper and preliminary information. This first stage is identical for both Innovators and Explorers, and candidates will be informed of the next steps at the end of 2023.
The Innovator Fellowship, which is Breakthrough Energy’s flagship program, aims to speed up the development of early-stage climate technologies with high potential. This program is a full-time commitment for scientists and engineers dedicated to commercializing their technology. Generally, Innovator projects secure less than $2,000,000 in funding, which results in equity dilution, and they are legally established before the program’s start in September 2024.
The Explorers program provides funding for the advancement of pioneering climate solutions that are in their earlier stages of development, involve higher technical risks, and may not be fully ready for integration. The Explorers projects are usually situated within university labs or research organizations, under the guidance of professors, faculty members, or full-time researchers who can manage this part-time commitment.
In 2024, Breakthrough Energy will also open a call for Business Fellows. This third program is a full-time opportunity for experienced business professionals who support innovators in their technology commercialization efforts and complement the scientific knowledge of the Innovator fellows.