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Quick grants from tech billionaires aim to speed up science research. But not all scientists approve


By EDEN STIFFMAN of The Chronicle of Philanthropy
Chronicle of Philanthropy

Patrick Collison, the now 34-year-old billionaire CEO of the online payments company Stripe, and economist Tyler Cowen worried scientific progress seemed to be slowing down. They wanted to chage that. Collison and his brother, John — a Stripe co-founder — contributed and along with Cowen raised more than $50 million from some of the biggest names in tech: Jack Dorsey, Elon Musk, and Peter Thiel. Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan and former Google CEO Eric Schmidt and his wife, Wendy. Fast Grants is one of many science improvement projects launched, channeling hundreds of millions of dollars into research labs and nonprofits to address what they view as problems with how government agencies and institutional philanthropies fund science.

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