I've long been interested in new ways to organize science and enable curiosity-driven discovery. Today, in partnership with @Stanford, @UCBerkeley, and @UCSF, we're excited to announce Arc Institute, a new undertaking in this vein:
Arc is, fundamentally, a nonprofit that will conduct basic research in a somewhat new way. It’s based on three core ideas. First, betting not on projects, but on people. Arc will fund biomedical investigators to pursue whatever research programs they deem most worthy of study.
This might sound basic, but people tend to be shocked and horrified upon learning how many bureaucratic hurdles the nation's top researchers must contend with. A labyrinth of funding applications typically stands between a good idea and an important result.
On top of that, consensus-oriented approval processes mean that many scientists don’t even have the freedom to focus on their best ideas. So, first and foremost, Arc is about returning science to the scientists.
Second, investing in scientific tools and infrastructure. As research programs have become more sophisticated, finding good ways to support the development and advancement of foundational technology has become more important.
And, third, making it easier for scientists to get good ideas from the lab to the clinic. Arc will start out by focusing on complex (i.e., polygenic) genetic diseases, including cancer, neurodegenerative disease, and immune-related disorders.
Arc is influenced by Fast Grants and what we learned there. In particular, Fast Grants increased our conviction that there are important and under-explored points in the space of possible institutional configurations.
You can read more about the whole thing in the blog post: And, if you’re interested, you can follow along at @ArcInstitute.
While I've helped get it off the ground, Arc will be led by @SKonermann and @PDHsu, two phenomenal scientists. (I'm remaining fully focused on the financial services "lab" that is Stripe.)
Most of all, we're enormously grateful to the donors (listed on who are supporting Arc, including @VitalikButerin, @collision, Crankstart, @RonConway, @danielgross, @eladgil, @htaneja, and @moskov.
🧵s from @arcinstitute's cofounders:


Recommended by
Recommendations from around the web and our community.

What a great initiative (and thread). Do better science by doing science better. Show how.