Giving for Neuroscience Research

A report by InsidePhilanthropy

Astroglial cells in a four-week-old juvenile zebrafish brain using a Zeiss confocal microscope. Credit: Emre Yaksi and Bram Serneels, Kavli Institute for Systems Neuroscience, NTNU

For its latest The State of American Philanthropy report, Giving for Neuroscience Research, InsidePhilanthropy sat down with The Kavli Foundation’s Director of Life Sciences, Amy Bernard, to discuss the opportunities and challenges in neuroscience research and what the foundation is focused on through its efforts to support basic science in this field.

As one of a very few private philanthropies focused exclusively on basic science, Dr. Bernard talks about why The Kavli Foundation supports it and the importance of basic science – “it is the underlayment” of all other research and the basis for what leads to applications. In the report she also describes different opportunities for neuroscience research, such as galvanizing data sharing and the need for a standardized governance mechanism, pointing to a recent project to build an international framework supported by the foundation, and also a larger portfolio of work in Open Data in Neuroscience.

“There’s a lot of untapped potential here,” Bernard said. “It’s a challenge and an opportunity to incentivize researchers to collaborate and get the good science you need to understand the varieties of the brain.”

InsidePhilanthropy’s The State of American Philanthropy reports can be found on the Learn section of its website (subscription may be required).