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BICS has published the top 3 winning essays from the 2021 contest as Kindle ebooks and audiobooks. Click here for the Kindle bundle. For the audiobooks, click Jeffrey Mishlove’s Beyond the Brain, Pim van Lommel’s The Continuity of Consciousness, Leo Ruickbie’s The Ghost in the Time Machine.

The 2023 Bigelow Institute for Consciousness Studies Grants Program

The 2023-2024 BICS grant program, “The Challenge,” will fund research into contact and communication with post-mortem or discarnate consciousness (also known as “the Afterlife,” or the “Other Side”) leading to the reception of higher order information of value to humankind (“wisdom acquisition”) with the allocation of a grand total of up to $1 million in grants.


Grants Available for
New Research Projects

The total available funding of up to $1 million will be divided among at least 16 projects. Up to $50,000 will be awarded to 12 projects and up to $100,000 will be awarded to a further 4 projects. BICS reserves the right to determine the value of each project and the final amount awarded.

$1,000,000 Total Funding Available
12 Projects Up to $50,000
4 Projects Up to $100,000

BICS hopes that results from the first Challenge are going to be so productive and fascinating that we could expand greatly on future projects. There is potentially a lot more at stake.

Robert T. Bigelow

The Beginning

The 2023 BICS grants program, “The Challenge,” is the largest funding program in the field of survival research.

It is not intended to be a one-off program and, if the 2023 phase is successful, will build upon it and grow.

The Challenge

The 2023-2024 funding cycle will see up to $1 million being awarded to projects within the remit.

And Beyond

If the Challenge produces sufficiently compelling results, then there is the capacity and willingness to expand the program.

Stage One

Preliminary proposals are invited for the 2023-2024 funding cycle. Successful projects will be funded for 9 months from August 1st, 2023, to May 1st, 2024.

What Type of Project Will Be Considered?


Projects must focus on contact or communication with post-mortem or discarnate consciousness (the “Other Side”) through the use of robust methodologies.


Wisdom Acquisition

Projects must focus on the reception of verified higher order information of general value to humankind, otherwise known as “wisdom acquisition.”


The Challenge

Who Can Apply?

Anyone who has experience, expertise and qualifications in the field of the survival of consciousness, including communication with consciousness, after physical death may apply for funding.


Single researchers may apply.


Teams or consortia may apply.

How to Apply for Funding

In the first instance, applicants should submit a budgeted preliminary proposal with professional bio, or bios of all team members, including photograph(s), and showing their qualifications and experience in this field (“the survival of human consciousness after death”).

The Project

Outline the proposed project. Explain why it is important and novel. Describe the experimental design and controls.

The Budget

Estimate the overall cost of the project and the number of payment instalments required, with deliverables tied to these milestones.

The People

Professional bio or bios of all team members, with photograph(s), showing expertise and qualifications for the proposed project.

Grant Application Timeline

November 1, 2022

Preliminary Proposals

Submit your preliminary proposal from this date.

November 1, 2022
February 1, 2023

End of Preliminary Phase

All preliminary proposals must be in by this date to be considered for funding.

February 1, 2023
February 1, 2023

Full Proposals

Selected applicants will be invited to submit a full proposal.

February 1, 2023
April 1, 2023

Full Proposal Deadline

Full proposals must be submitted by this date.

April 1, 2023
August 1, 2023

Grantees Announced

Projects to be funded will be announced.

August 1, 2023
May 1, 2024

Final Reports Due

Grantees must submit their final reports by this date.

May 1, 2024

Due to the unprecedented number of applications there may be some delay in replying to all applicants. Your patience is appreciated.


Frequently Asked Questions

If you have any questions, explore these answers first:

I have a general parapsychology project, can I apply?

No. Only those projects that solely focus on contact/communication and “wisdom acquisition” from post-mortem/discarnate consciousness (the “Other Side”) will be considered for funding.

What is wisdom acquisition?

Wisdom acquisition is a term used in this research field to mean the reception of higher order information of value to humankind. As a guide, historical examples of such contact and communication with “the afterlife” have included: Emanuel Swedenborg; Allan Kardec; William Stainton Moses; Edgar Cayce; and Jane Roberts.

As part of wisdom acquisition, BICS is interested in exploring and researching information obtained from authenticated sources on the “Other Side” pertaining to addressing the future viability or non-viability of humankind over the next twenty to thirty years.

What sort of methods will be considered?

Applicants are free to decide on their approach, but as a guide methods used have been wide-ranging, including, but not limited to, automatic writing, dreams, lucid dreaming, visions, veridical hallucination, trance, hypnosis, hypnotic regression, direct voice, mental mediumship, physical mediumship, so-called spirit boards, etc.

What is meant by contact/communication?

Contact and communication with the “Other Side” is the exclusive focus of the program; however, this does not entail contacting deceased relatives for the purposes of receiving messages of personal comfort. The objective is to be understood as contact/communication with post-mortem/discarnate consciousness to obtain information that can be classed as “wisdom.”

Can I receive all of the funding upfront?

No. Funding will be distributed in instalments across the duration of the project. Applicants must detail and justify how many such instalments will be needed and when, with project deliverables tied to each of these milestones.

Total Funding Available

Download the Application Pack

BICS has released an application pack for “The Challenge” 2023-2024 research funding program with all the information you need to complete your preliminary proposal.

Funding Application Checklist

You must also include a bio with photo for all researchers.

The Preliminary Proposal Phase has Closed

The preliminary proposal phase has closed and suitable applications are now being selected for the full proposal phase. If you have not been successful in this round, please note that, due to the number of applications received, BICS cannot enter into individual discussion of any decisions made.

BICS Logo (Head)

Bigelow Institute for Consciousness Studies

The Bigelow Institute for Consciousness Studies (BICS) was founded in 2020 by aerospace entrepreneur Robert T. Bigelow to support research into the survival of human consciousness after physical death and, following from that, the nature of “the afterlife.”