Our Approach

The world has a lot of problems. Some are complex (like climate change). Others are simpler (like how to find a lost pet). We’re looking for solutions to problems that you have or you see experienced by others. You don’t have to be established in your field – you just need a good solution and the passion to carry it out. Interested? Click here to apply.

How We Evaluate

All proposals to Amazon Catalyst go through a three-step process outlined below. Evaluation for Catalyst grants is rapid and efficient: it is possible to receive funding within 90 days of applying. If successful, you could even receive funding for your project by the end of the quarter.

  1. Members of the Amazon Catalyst Evaluation Committee read your proposal and evaluate it against the screening criteria (listed below).
  2. If selected, you will be invited to an in-person meeting with members of the Amazon Catalyst Evaluation Committee to discuss your project’s details.
  3. The committee takes a final vote and notifies the winners.

In each of these steps, we look at the following:

  • Meets a Need

    Does the application fulfill/address a real need that people have, and have those people been clearly identified?

  • End Product

    Does the application describe the development of a tangible product (e.g., a device, process, service, etc.) to meet the identified need? Please note that we do not fund basic research or projects whose primary goal is to collect knowledge.

  • Novel Idea

    Is the final product differentiated from other approaches? Is it new, creative, and maybe a little crazy?

  • Scalable

    Is the final product likely to scale to a large number of people, and have a positive impact on them?

  • Practical Approach

    Are the project plan, requested funding, and milestones realistic? Did the applicant describe potential obstacles that could reasonably affect the project’s success?

  • Motivated Team

    Do the applicants demonstrate the necessary capabilities and genuine motivation to carry out the project?

  • Clarity of Application

    Is the application written clearly, without jargon, for a broad audience? Have the questions been answered with sufficient rigor?

  • Relatable to the Public

    Would the solution, if carried out successfully, make a good article in a newspaper or a “BBC headline” immediately following the grant period?

Have some questions about whether your idea is a good fit? You can read our FAQ here and view past winners here.