APRIL 1–MAY 27, 2020
Funding decisions announced in September

Updated April 22, 2020

Over the past decade, the contemplative sciences have grown remarkably, generating new questions across a wide range of disciplines and sectors of society. Recognizing the need for small groups of specialists to convene in dialogue about a specific issue in order to deepen their collective insight and make significant impacts, we are pleased to offer the Think Tanks grant program.

Mind & Life Think Tanks are intimate, two- to three-day self-organized gatherings (either in person or online) designed to advance a particular project bridging contemplation, research, and action—with clear and realistic deliverables. These incubator-type meetings bring together small groups of collaborators including scientists, scholars, humanitarian leaders and changemakers, contemplative practitioners, educators, applied professionals, and others.

Proposals must demonstrate relevance to the mission of the Mind & Life Institute. We have a particular interest in supporting projects that examine the role of contemplative practices in fostering interconnection, and/or addressing issues of disconnection either at the societal level (e.g., othering) or at the individual level (e.g., loneliness, depression, addiction, trauma). In this context, “contemplative” practices are defined in a broad sense—including various forms of meditation, embodied or movement-based practices, introspection and awareness of mind-body states, reflective writing, contemplative prayer, etc. Please read the Application Information for more details.

Grants of up to $15,000 (USD) will be awarded to strong proposals that cultivate collaborations between researchers and applied practitioners, embrace multi-disciplinarity, engage leaders and changemakers, have social and ethical relevance, and include diverse participants (in terms of gender, race, ethnicity, ability, geographical location, expertise, etc.).

For questions about this grant program, please see the Think Tanks FAQ, or contact

Congratulations to our
2020 Think Tank Recipients

2020 Think Tanks Review Committee

Gaelle Desbordes, PhD

Grants & Science Manager, Mind & Life Institute

Kathleen Garrison, PhD

Yale University

Grant Jones

The Black Lotus Collective

Anthony Zanesco

University of California–Davis