Shuttleworth Foundation Fellowship 2022 for Innovative Thinkers

Deadline: October 15, 2021

Applications for the Shuttleworth Foundation Fellowship 2022 are now open. The Shuttleworth Foundation offers fellowships to individuals to implement their innovative idea for social change. They are most interested in exceptional ideas at the intersection between technology, knowledge and learning, with openness being the key requirement.

The Shuttleworth Foundation continues to seek brave individuals with innovative ideas to change systems, shift thinking and apply openness in areas that are causing harm and inequity. How can you improve these systems, or replace them? What practical solutions do you have to unlock knowledge and empower citizens? Why are you the right person to turn your vision into a reality? They look forward to hearing from you.


Shuttleworth Foundation do not have a list of topics they are interested in funding or a call for proposals around a specific theme. They have a sense of what critical problems could be addressed in the world. But an important part of the openness they practice is being open to ideas.

Below are areas in which they have already made substantial investments. If they were to invest in these further, they would look for exceptional ideas that advance the field beyond what they already know, that bring a fresh perspective or approach to addressing a specific aspect, or that radically re-imagine the concept at its core.

  • Open education – creating open educational materials; building platforms to hold and share materials; establishing pathways for delivery and experimenting with sustainability and access models for effectively integrating open educational resources into formal education systems.
  • Open government – encouraging and enabling open government data; establishing the veracity of public statements; building systems and process for more effective citizen/government engagement; and supporting citizen-led campaigns addressing important governance issues, especially around digital rights.
  • Open science – experimenting with alternative approaches to advancing science and its impact on society by revolutionising scholarly communications and inviting citizen participation, rooted in openness.
  • Telecommunications – addressing access and affordability by experimenting with mesh phone networks using both traditional and mobile handsets, establishing community owned and operated mobile phone networks (including the necessary policy, regulation and sustainability work) and combating spectrum congestion by using laser-enabled data transfer.
  • Health care – building affordable, easily reproducible, high quality open medical devices supported by the process for designing, manufacturing, quality assuring, distributing and using these devices effectively; assessing and mitigating the negative impact patent systems have on access to medicines.
  • Cultural expression – exploring web-enabled mechanisms to express culture – represented by music and history – more freely, widely and openly, for the benefit of marginalised groups and society as a whole.
  • The Open Web – fortifying the practices that enable us to become and remain effective citizens of the web, with specific reference to reducing friction around end-user secure communications, contributor agreements, equitable access and how knowledge resources flow.
  • The environment – enabling citizens to take back control of monitoring their environment, using open hardware and open data, to support conservation management, resource allocation, extractive industry regulation, food production and traditional knowledge stewardship.


  • This Fellowship consists of anyone from college drop-outs to doctors (academic and clinical), students to professors, enthusiastic upstarts and seasoned veterans.
  • They come from all over and work where they can make the most difference.
  • The profile they share is one of openness, commitment and bravery.

Anyone can become a Shuttleworth Fellow.

  • You do not have to have any specific level of education, or you could have a PhD.
  • You do not have to have years of experience in the workplace or be an up and coming millennial.
  • You do not have to be from any specific geography or nationality
  • You do not have to have an organisation, but you can if you want to, and it can be for or not for profit.
  • You do not have to be of any specific gender.
  • You do not even have to be building software.


A completed application comprises:

  • The (completed & submitted) application form.
  • Your 5 minute application video (public or private).
  • Your up to date resume.

Use no more that 1500 characters per essay question.

Click here to apply

For more information, visit Shuttleworth Foundation Fellowship.