Terms and Conditions

Terms and Conditions of a Deshpande Center Grant

Funding from the Deshpande Center carries with it certain expectations and obligations, as outlined below:

Use of Funds

Funding shall be used for innovative research as described in the submitted proposal.

Program Participation

There is an expectation that principal investigators (PI’s) funded by the Deshpande Center are keen to see their research make an impact on the marketplace, whether through a start-up or some other license. The center provides guidance and teambuilding opportunities through its Catalyst Program, connections to the entrepreneurial community, and the i-Teams class. It hosts an annual IdeaStream symposium, an annual fall VIP Open House, occasional workshops, and other events to enhance and showcase innovative work done at MIT. Grantees understand that, if funded by the Center, they and their team will be asked to participate as appropriate. This includes staffing a poster at the Open House and IdeaStream events, and presenting at IdeaStream.


The Deshpande Center depends on the support of successful alumni, entrepreneurs, and investors to provide a sustainable source of funding for innovative research and assistance to help innovations reach the marketplace. Donations of equity from start-ups resulting from work funded by the Deshpande Center are expected to ensure the future sustainability of the center and funding of future grantees. If grantees found a startup from this project, they will be expected to donate to the Deshpande Center 1% of the founders equity at the A funding round, per $50,000 of grants awarded. This is in addition to any equity or royalties paid by the startup to MIT to license any patents.

Intellectual Property

PIs funded by the Deshpande Center shall seek to establish IP, where appropriate, via disclosures of potentially patentable inventions submitted to the TLO as normal MIT practice, with an indication that Deshpande Center funding has been used to support the work. Copies of such communications should be submitted to the Deshpande Center office in parallel.


The PI shall communicate the project’s progress through various means, including the following:

Initial kick-off meeting
Regular meetings with Catalyst (mentor) – as appropriate, usually monthly
Informal notification of all significant milestones achieved
A midterm and final meeting
Final written report or presentation to the Deshpande Center
Patent disclosures – as described above
Publications – Publication of results from work sponsored by the Center is encouraged, and with Deshpande Center support will be acknowledged in all publications.
Media relations – Grant recipients will be announced to the media shortly after they are selected. When appropriate, PIs funded by the center might be asked to interface with the press. Media training will be available.

Reviewing Proposals

As part of the grant selection process, the Deshpande Center relies on MIT faculty to review proposals. Grantee PIs agree to be members of the grant review and selection committee for a three-year term.

Conflict of Interest

Faculty funded by the Deshpande Center should follow MIT guidelines in Policy and Procedures and be diligent to avoid conflict of interest related to the funding, research, or collaborators on the project.