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In a nutshell

The Shuttleworth Foundation is at its core an experiment in open philanthropy. We use alternative funding methodologies and collaborative ways of working to ensure that every Fellow has the support they need to succeed.

Our ideal future is one where the building blocks of solutions to social challenges are easy to find in a global open knowledge society, with unhindered access to essential information and limitless opportunities for innovation and replication.


We default to open instead of locked down in principle and in practice. We subscribe to the Open Definition where data or content is regarded as open if anyone is free to use, reuse and redistribute it, thereby ensuring interoperability between different pools of material. But for us, openness also goes beyond the licence. It includes being open to collaboration and contributions from outside our immediate reference group, inviting many eyeballs to review our process and make it better.

The three pillars of our theory of change are:


We focus on innovation. We believe the implementation of proven ideas is important, but there is a great deal of support for these kinds of initiatives already. We want to give the person with the fresh idea a chance to try it and see if it brings about the positive change they believe it will.


Openly licensing allows others to replicate, reuse, adapt, improve, adopt, bring to scale, write about, talk about, remix, translate, digitise, redistribute and build upon what we have done.

Living out loud

Once others are free to engage with our work in this way, we believe opportunities present themselves from unexpected, and previously unknown places. Our work may find applications we could not imagine and may spark fires where we could not foresee them.

Apply for a Fellowship

Each Fellow we fund is passionate about a unique cause that they pursue both before and after the fellowship. We are always looking for social innovators who are open at heart, have a fresh perspective on addressing challenges and have a very clear idea of their role in bringing about positive change.

If you would like to apply, we recommend you read our application pointers, and how we measure success before you do.

All of our legal agreement templates can be found on GitHub. They are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 Unported License ( Templates and explanatory notes can be found at . You are free to use these templates but you may need to modify the templates for them to be suitable for your jurisdiction and circumstances.

start.txt · Last modified: 2021/10/05 10:44 by admin