The OpenDocument web site is not longer accepting new posts. Information on this page is preserved for legacy purposes only. For current information on ODF, please see the OASIS OpenDocument Technical Committee.

NLnet Foundation seeks ODF proposals for funding

NLnet, a philanthropic (private) not-for-profit organisation, has picked Identity, privacy & presence and Open Document Format as the two main areas it will focus its funding on in the next year and beyond. With these two themes the foundation wants to actively pursue the further enhancement of online privacy and standardisation in open document formats.

From the NLnet website: Do you have a valuable idea in one of these two areas, and are you looking for financial means to make your ideas come through? Or, do you have an existing project in the scope of these two themes that requires additional means to enable further development? Then submit your proposal to NLnet foundation and see if we can help you. We are independent and put put our money where our mouth is: that is to increase the use of open technologies in society. What is important for us, is that the technology you develop --or help promote-- is usable for others and has real impact.

We invite you to submit your proposals for funding to NLnet!

Note that we are also interested to hear your inspiring ideas if you are unable to manage it yourself.

How does it work

Within the scope of these two main themes, NLnet on one hand plans to approach organisations, groups, individuals and companies to do research and develop products. On the other hand, NLnet remains open for any proposals and valuable suggestions from any entities and individuals.

Anybody may apply for financial support if the proposed project meets the following criteria:

  1. the project falls within one of the two themes chosen by NLnet as break-through direction for coming couple of years;
  2. within these themes, the project shall stimulate the use of network and information exchange technologies for peaceful and humane purposes;
  3. the project results will be freely distributed based on Open Source principles, e.g. under a GPL license;
  4. the applicant is ready to undertake efforts to disseminate project results or will provide support in this;
  5. the project should last two to three years maximum.

Note tat the requirement that project results shall be freely distributed based on Open Source principles does not necessarily mean that these results can not be utilized commercially. On the contrary: building a profitable business on the project results is applauded.

After his idea was found valuable, we ask the applicant, to submit a project plan outlining the following topics:


  • Introduction: short description of the project and goals;
  • Description of innovation;
  • the problem solved by this project;
  • the relative advantage of the proposed innovation;
  • usability, i.e. target group: for whom and to what purpose;
  • perspectives for further development of this innovation and/or other technologies;
  • how generic is the proposed solution, i.e. is possible to build other project up on it;
  • Project setup: organizational, technical, eventual partners, dependencies on other projects, licenses, and such;
  • Project planning: milestones and related results;
  • Project budgeting;
  • Project risks: which risks can be overseen from the start of the project;
  • Project results dissemination: how the project team is going to disseminate results and to whom, publicity, diffusion of the produced innovation;
  • Possibly, follow-ups on the project.

Since dissemination is considered a critical issue, new ideas about promotion of project results may result in supplemental financing. This can be negotiated on the basis of an adapted (or new) dissemination plan, compiled by the project team.

My idea needs more

Project teams with valuable ideas can be invited for an appointment at NLnet to explain ideas and discuss the possibilities. The possibility exists that NLnet may be able to either support such projects or help the project finding support elsewhere. Also co-funding may be a possibility.

Use the contact request form or call either Michiel Leenaars (Strategy Manager, +31-6 27 050 947) or Valer Mischenko (Director, +31-20 888 42 52).

Plenty of possibilities

NLnet Foundation (in Dutch: Stichting NLnet) is a philanthropic (private) not-for-profit organisation that invests its own trust funds to bring the open information society closer. Annually, the foundation spends around two million Euro in supporting strategic initiatives that contribute to an open information society, especially where these are aimed at development and dissemination of open standards and (network related) open source technology. Additionally the foundation wants to contribute to the societal debate on these subjects.

NLnet foundation supports a large range of activities, from software development, standardisation work and development of educational material up to hacker festivals, digital rights activities and the international development of open source software licences. The NLnet contribution can also be used as so called "matching" for other subsidies from organisations such as the EU and Science foundations. Focus Areas: BPEL | DITA | ebXML | IDtrust | OpenDocument | SAML | UBL | UDDI
OASIS sites: OASIS | Cover Pages | | AMQP | CGM Open | eGov | Emergency | IDtrust | LegalXML | Open CSA | OSLC | WS-I