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IMLS Sparks! Ignition Grants

The Sparks! Ignition Grants for Libraries and Museums initiative is a new funding opportunity developed by IMLS to expand and test the boundaries of library, archive, and museum services and practices. It provides small, targeted investments in high-risk, innovative responses to the challenges and opportunities facing cultural heritage institutions in a rapidly changing information environment.

These grants will support the testing of specific innovations and foster broad sharing of information about what works and what does not. Because innovations can emerge in a variety of settings, the Sparks! Ignition Grants initiative is structured to encourage participation by organizations of all types and sizes.

Examples of projects that might be funded by this program include, but are not limited to:

  • exploring the potential of highly original, experimental collaborations,
  • testing inventive new workflows or processes that may result in substantial cost savings,
  • rapid prototyping and testing of new types of software tools, or creating useful new ways to link separate software applications used in libraries, archives, or museums,
  • research that involves the deployment, testing, and evaluation of a specific innovation, and
  • offering innovative new types of services or new service options to library, archive, or museum visitors.

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