June 7, 2021

2021 Towards Trustworthy Products in AR, VR, and Smart Devices request for proposals

This Research Award is now closed

About

We believe in trust and trustworthiness as suitable terms for encompassing security, privacy, and integrity into the products and platforms we build. More and more unique products, use cases, and devices are coming to bear in this new space. It follows that with an entirely new category of technologies come entirely new possibilities and models for considering trust.

Facebook is once again soliciting proposals to help accelerate research in these fields with the hope of helping to foster a world of trustworthy mixed-reality and smart device products. There are fairly robust research fields in traditional computing paradigms from cloud to mobile, and we hope to drive similar progress in the fields of AR/VR.

To foster further innovation in this area, and to deepen our collaboration with academia, Facebook is pleased to invite faculty to respond to this second call for research proposals that explore unique challenges, threats, attacks, mitigations, and other considerations in the burgeoning space of AR, VR, and smart devices. A total of up to eight awards are available this time, up to $75,000 each, depending on the specific requirements. Payment will be made to the proposer’s host university as an unrestricted gift.

For questions related to this RFP, please email Kelly Forbes Marshall at kellymarshall@fb.com.

Award Recipients

Franziska Roesner

University of Washington

2021 Towards Trustworthy Products in AR, VR, and Smart Devices request for proposals - 2021

Guohao Lan

Delft University of Technology

2021 Towards Trustworthy Products in AR, VR, and Smart Devices request for proposals - 2021

Jiasi Chen

University of California, Riverside

2021 Towards Trustworthy Products in AR, VR, and Smart Devices request for proposals - 2021

Kassem Fawaz

University of Wisconsin–Madison

2021 Towards Trustworthy Products in AR, VR, and Smart Devices request for proposals - 2021

Maria Gorlatova

Duke University

2021 Towards Trustworthy Products in AR, VR, and Smart Devices request for proposals - 2021

Navid Asadi

University of Florida

2021 Towards Trustworthy Products in AR, VR, and Smart Devices request for proposals - 2021

Applications are now closed

Application Dates

  • Launch Date June 7, 2021
  • Deadline July 14, 2021, 5:00 p.m. AOE
  • Winners Announced September 2021

Areas of Interest

We are interested in a broad range of topics relating to applications such as AR and wearables, VR products, other AR/VR form-factors, smart home social products, and more. Examples might include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Novel proposals in silicon, hardware, OS/platform, supply-chain, or anti-tamper in this space — whether they are threats, attacks, or mitigations.
  • User-verifiable privacy controls or privacy-preserving techniques in the context of unique sensors, data, and use cases
  • Advancements in terms of identity, authentication, authorization, abuse-prevention, or biometrics, as they pertain to said devices and technologies
  • Security and privacy advancements in voice assistants, smart devices, smart home cameras, and so on
  • Novel security and privacy techniques for spatial mapping and localization, such as local attestation or point cloud geometry hashing
  • Any novel or new concepts in trust as applied to the AR/VR and smart devices space that warrant further exploration

Requirements

Proposals should include

  • Summary of the project (1-2 pages) explaining the area of focus, a description of techniques, any relevant prior work, and a timeline with milestones and expected outcomes
  • Draft budget description (1 page) including an approximate cost of the award and explanation of how funds would be spent
  • Curriculum Vitae for all project participants
  • Organization details; this will include tax information and administrative contact details

Eligibility

  • Awards must comply with applicable U.S. and international laws, regulations and policies.
  • Applicants must be current faculty at an accredited academic institution.
  • Applicants must be the Principal Investigator on any resulting award.
  • Organizations must be a nonprofit or non-governmental organization with recognized legal status in their respective country (equal to 501(c)(3) status under the United States Internal Revenue Code).
  • Facebook cannot consider proposals submitted, prepared, or to be carried out by individuals residing in, or affiliated with, an academic institution located in a country or territory subject to comprehensive U.S. trade sanctions.
  • Government officials (excluding faculty and staff of public universities, to the extent they may be considered government officials), political figures, and politically affiliated businesses (all as determined by Facebook in its sole discretion) are not eligible.

Frequently Asked Questions

Most of the RFP awards are an unrestricted gift. Because of its nature, salary/headcount could be included as part of the budget presented for the RFP. Since the award/gift is paid to the university, they will be able to allocate the funds to that winning project and have the freedom to use as they need. All Facebook teams are different and have different expectations concerning deliverables, timing, etc. Long story short – yes, money for salary/headcount can be included. It’s up to the reviewing team to determine if the percentage spend is reasonable and how that relates to the decision if the project is a winner or not.

We are flexible, but ideally proposals submitted are single-spaced, Times New Roman, 12 pt font.

Research awards are given year-round and funding years/duration can vary by proposal.

Yes, award funds can be used to cover a researcher’s salary.

Budgets can vary by institution and geography, but overall research funds ideally cover the following: graduate or post-graduate students’ employment/tuition; other research costs (e.g., equipment, laptops, incidental costs); travel associated with the research (conferences, workshops, summits, etc.); overhead for research gifts is limited to 5%

One person will need to be the primary PI (i.e., the submitter that will receive all email notifications); however, you’ll be given the opportunity to list collaborators/co-PIs in the submission form. Please note in your budget breakdown how the funds should be dispersed amongst PIs.

Terms & Conditions

Please read these terms carefully before proceeding.

Facebook’s decisions will be final in all matters relating to Facebook RFP solicitations, including whether or not to grant an award and the interpretation of Facebook RFP Terms and Conditions. By submitting a proposal, applicants affirm that they have read and agree to these Terms and Conditions.

  • Facebook is authorized to evaluate proposals submitted under its RFPs, to consult with outside experts, as needed, in evaluating proposals, and to grant or deny awards using criteria determined by Facebook to be appropriate and at Facebook’s sole discretion. Facebook’s decisions will be final in all matters relating to its RFPs, and applicants agree not to challenge any such decisions.
  • Facebook will not be required to treat any part of a proposal as confidential or protected by copyright, and may use, edit, modify, copy, reproduce and distribute all or a portion of the proposal in any manner for the sole purposes of administering the Facebook RFP website and evaluating the contents of the proposal.
  • Personal data submitted with a proposal, including name, mailing address, phone number, and email address of the applicant and other named researchers in the proposal may be collected, processed, stored and otherwise used by Facebook for the purposes of administering Facebook’s RFP website, evaluating the contents of the proposal, and as otherwise provided under Facebook’s Privacy Policy.
  • Neither Facebook nor the applicant is obligated to enter into a business transaction as a result of the proposal submission. Facebook is under no obligation to review or consider the proposal.
  • Feedback provided in a proposal regarding Facebook products or services will not be treated as confidential or protected by copyright, and Facebook is free to use such feedback on an unrestricted basis with no compensation to the applicant. The submission of a proposal will not result in the transfer of ownership of any IP rights.
  • Applicants represent and warrant that they have authority to submit a proposal in connection with a Facebook RFP and to grant the rights set forth herein on behalf of their organization. All awards provided by Facebook in connection with this RFP shall be used only in accordance with applicable laws and shall not be used in any way, directly or indirectly, to facilitate any act that would constitute bribery or an illegal kickback, an illegal campaign contribution, or would otherwise violate any applicable anti-corruption or political activities law.
  • Awards granted in connection with RFP proposals will be subject to terms and conditions contained in the unrestricted gift agreement (or, in some cases, other mechanisms) pursuant to which the award funding will be provided. Applicants understand and acknowledge that they will need to agree to these terms and conditions to receive an award.