Research Collaborations

Collaboration is fundamental to research at Facebook

Our researchers actively partner with university faculty, post-doctoral researchers, and doctoral students, to work together to explore and solve many of the deep technical challenges facing our industry today.

We engage in numerous academic collaborations across engineering, business and research disciplines. Collaborators work directly with Facebook research, engineering, and/or product teams on efforts that can be incremental to existing work or they may tackle completely new research directions that help advance fundamental science.

The specific nature of each collaboration varies depending on the expected outcomes and timescales. Project scopes range in size and complexity from short-term small-scale engagements and sponsorships, to broader multi-year open-ended research challenges. Certain projects will operate on fixed timelines with very targeted outcomes and deliverables.

Our collaborative projects are anchored on a Facebook research topic from one of our key research areas, and have one or more Facebook researchers committed to the collaboration.

Collaboration requirements

  • At least one faculty Principal Investigator (PI) who assigns academic researchers to the project.
  • A Facebook sponsor that agrees to work with the faculty PI to lead the research effort.
  • A clear project outline, with timeline for completion, and proposed outcomes.
  • A written agreement between Facebook and the University, covering such items as Intellectual Property (IP) and expectations regarding publication.

Facebook collaboration agreements range from Master Agreements (MA) encompassing focused projects designed to make it easier and faster for Facebook groups to rapidly engage with university collaborators on specific work, to Sponsored Research Agreements (SRA) for collaborative research, which may be project specific leading more to scientific results.

In forming agreements, Facebook understands that Universities have a level of overhead and administration that needs to be reflected in sponsored collaborative agreements and will pay around 40% overhead on the costs for a University hosted researcher. Note that in the case of unrestricted gift funding, Facebook pays up to 5% overheads to the University.

The best way to explore a potential collaboration with a Facebook researcher is to connect with them 1:1 to discuss a mutually interesting research topic.

For additional questions email