Experimenting with and open proposal writing space

This thread houses the conversation that we had after setting up a temporary open proposal writing category.

To clean up the platform we replace temporary subcategories form time to time and move their content back to the main thread.

The introduction thread of the “Open Proposal Writing” Category is here:


This is a public open workspace in which you can craft your proposals, calls, project plans and similar.

In doing so you can get help and profit from the experience of other community members while simultaneously contributing to a growing knowledge base.

Proposal writing for grants, answering calls or wording them yourself, finding funding or partners are complex processes. Institutions have developed theses processes and brought them to a point where it is harder and harder to break into the systems from outside.

Here we have the opportunity to help each other as a free community of individuals to empower each other’s projects.

What you can do here:

  • Post your 1st, 2nd or 3rd draft and get feedback and help
  • Share and analyses successful and unsuccessful application experiences
  • Read, give feedback and contribute to the drafts others have shared.

Let’s help each other realising ideas that could help everyone!

Tips for what information to include:

  1. What is your project about? What’s the problem it solves and how?
  2. What stage are you in?
  3. What call are you answering, grant are you applying for or what other goal do you have with the text/presentation you are crafting?
  4. What do you need concrete help with? People? Skills? Guidance? Clarity?

Ping @BlackForestBoi , works?

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This kind of category is a good use case for Discourse topic templates. So I adapted the instructions slightly and pre-filled the editor for topics in this category with the questions. Hope it is useful.

Also note, you still need to set a category image. Only then the category description will be shown on the category page. And that’s what seems to be intended, as the instructions talk about “the + New Topic button below


I have changed the post above to suit the new use of this category for proposal writing :).

Would it be ok if I move previous post that fit the topic here or should I link them here instead?

post like these:

we have many discussions and questions on how to write proposals, how to write or answer calls or how to search for funding and partnerships.

Bringing them together in one place and making clear for people that they can use it as a public common workspace to ask and give advice at the same time would be sensible in my opinion :).

ping @nadia, @hugi, @johncoate

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@nadia, I changed this text and the description of the category, is that ok?

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looks nice <3

Hello @marina,

Alberto mentioned that you might know some good examples of previous proposal writing or analysing examples which we could move here to bring together an example knowledgebase.

Could you recommend some good threads on proposal writing?

like these:

As agreed in another thread, we will keep the proposal writing category for the topics close to the NGI rather than moving all the discussions about other calls (which are probably not relevant for this particular crowd) to the IOH. In general, I think this will be super useful for preparing future proposals so happy to help there! :slight_smile:

Hi all,

We created a methodology for co-writing text (proposals, reports, etc.) as a group, one that exploits collective intelligence at its best, in my opinion. We formatted that into a template.

We used this template many times and it went through multiple iterations. We can swarm text 20, 30 people at the time, turn around high quality and technical text, including proposals, in only a few days. Once you use it a couple of times and get used to it, I think you’ll like it.

Feel free to copy and use. Also, we would appreciate feedback, if you have ideas about how to improve it.


Thank you @tiberiusb! this is some great resource. Can you maybe also share some concrete examples of good or bad experiences you had with this process?