For Researchers: The OSSP research microfunding platform provides greater intellectual freedom and access to an additional source of research funding


For Investors: The OSSP research microfunding platform empowers you to directly invest in the research that will make a difference in you life


By hosting a research microfunding platform, we hope to (a) provide academic researchers with access to a supplementary source of basic research funding that is free from the constraints of market demands and (b) empower individual citizens - or groups of citizens - to actively participate in the academic research process by investing directly in projects that will make a difference in their lives.


How it works | If an academic researcher has an idea for a research project, they may submit it (with a projected budget) to The OSSP.  All proposals received are first posted online for peer review by the OSSP community of researchers/experts.  If a proposal is approved, it is then published publicly to receive funded by the OSSP community of investors.


Investors will be given 30-90 days to review each proposal and determine whether or not to invest in it.


If a proposal is fully funded within this 30-90 day investment period, the invested funds will be transferred to the researcher to begin their work and launch their research log.


The research log (r-log) maintained by each researcher is a project-specific research 'diary' that is accessible to a researcher and their investors.  The purpose of this log is to provide an open line of communication between researchers and investors (particularly regarding the progress made by the researcher), and to serve as a 'thought-record' chronicling how the researcher approached their research question, and confronted those challenges and obstacles they encountered in conducting their proposed study.


Research logs will be visible only to investors while a research project is being conducted; but will be made visible to the entire OSSP community of researchers when the project has been completed and the final paper summarizing the project outcomes has been published.*


Upon completing a research project, each researcher (or team of researchers) will be required to publish a final report as well as their research data.  This report - which will be expected to contain the researcher's interpretation of their data, lessons-learned, and thoughts regarding the implications of this study on future research; shall then be made openly available to the entire OSSP researcher and investor communities.  Researchers are also encouraged to publish their work in one or more peer-reviewed journals.


* For undergraduate and graduate research students: while research logs are (by default) only visible to your investors and members of the OSSP researcher community; you may choose to also share your research logs with prospective graduate schools or faculty.




What events or conditions underlie the abnormally high die-offs of European, US, and Canadian bee colonies observed since 2007 - a phenomenon recently dubbed colony collapse disorder (CCD)?



Where, along the length of the Mississippi and Missouri rivers, are non-point source nutrient input sites clustered; and to what extent are such nutrients responsible for hypoxia in the Gulf of Mexico?



How can water storage and distribution systems be improved to more efficiently provide water for agriculture and energy production without disrupting the natural ecosystems from which the water is removed?


How are oscillations in insulin secretion synchronized across the multitude of pancreatic islets contained within the human pancreas; and by what mechanism are these oscillations disrupted in individuals with Type II Diabetes Mellitus?



What 'best practices' must be adopted by researchers, farmers, and corporations in order to maximize agricultural yield while preserving the genetic diversity of food crops such as rice?


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