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GEOBON and Microsoft launch US$1 million grant programme: EBVs on the Cloud

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GEOBON and Microsoft launch US$1 million grant programme: EBVs on the Cloud

As our planet’s biodiversity is increasingly threatened, it is more important than ever to have a sustained and integrated way to assess biodiversity and enable informed decision-making in global conservation efforts. Microsoft’s AI for Earth programme and the Group on Earth Observations Biodiversity Observation Network (GEO BON) Secretariat are launching a new US$1 million grant programme. 

Grants of US$500k in financial funding and US$500k in Microsoft Azure credits will support projects that strengthen efforts to monitor Earth’s biodiversity and create Essential Biodiversity Variables (EBVs) and relevant biodiversity change indicators derived from the EBVs. We will consider projects that develop novel approaches to monitoring of biodiversity as well as projects that leverage cloud-scale computation to increase the geographical and temporal coverage of existing monitoring programs.

Each grant recipient will receive:

  • Up to US$100k in financial funding for up to one year
  • Up to US$100k in Azure credits for up to three years
  • Support resources through the AI for Earth grants program, including technical advice and online Azure training materials


  • Applicants must be either individual members or partner organizations of GEO BON. We particularly encourage applications from locally based organizations in geographic areas where biodiversity observations are currently underrepresented.
  • Projects must be developed and deployed on the Azure cloud for the duration of the grant support.
  • All data, software and products as a result of this Call shall be made available to the GEO community following the principles and procedures stated in Section 3.4 (Ethical Standards and Intellectual Property) of the GEO Rules of Procedure

Application Instructions

Please refer to this application template for more detailed application instructions. Email completed application to with the subject “EBVs on the Cloud Application”

The grant application deadline is June 5, 2020.

Full details can be found on the website here.