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Big problems require bold solutions.

Solving society’s biggest problems is not easy, but it can be done. 100&Change is a MacArthur Foundation competition for a $100 million grant to fund a single proposal that will make measurable progress toward solving a significant problem. 100&Change will select a bold proposal that promises real progress toward solving a critical problem of our time. And it will award a $100 million grant to help make that solution a reality. Proposals focused on any critical issue are welcome.

  • No single field or problem area is designated – proposals from any sector are encouraged.
  • Proposals should articulate both the problem and the proposed solution and must have a charitable purpose.
  • Competitive proposals will be impactful, evidence-based, feasible, durable, and just.


Some problems cannot be solved by grants of the size that foundations typically provide. By funding at a level far above what is typical in philanthropy, we can address problems and support solutions that are radically different in scale, scope, and complexity. $100 million is a large enough sum to focus on a serious problem and its solution in a meaningful and lasting way. We hope that 100&Change can inspire a conversation about how we can solve some of our most significant problems.

The Problem the Challenge is Solving

The openness of 100&Change is a counterbalance to the Foundation’s Big Bets, which strive for transformational impact in areas identified by the Foundation’s Board and Staff. In contrast, we designed 100&Change to be agnostic with respect to the field or problem area.

We seek proposals that articulate both a problem and its solution. Competitive proposals will address a significant problem and provide a solution that is impactful, evidence-based, feasible, durable, and just.

About the Process

We designed a selection process that is fair, open, and transparent. Once the application period closes, we will review each 100&Change submission to ensure it meets the requirements and rules before advancing to the next stage. During the participatory review process, applicants will score and provide feedback on each other’s proposals using our established criteria outlined in the scoring rubric. Our Wise Head Panel of external judges will then review and score submissions using the same criteria and trait scoring rubric.  

MacArthur's Board of Directors will then select up to five finalists. Over the next several months, the finalists will work with an expert team to strengthen their proposals, present a preliminary plan for monitoring, evaluation, and learning, and show authentic engagement with communities of interest before submitting revised project plans.

The selection of the final award recipient rests with MacArthur’s Board.

With 100&Change, we set out to do something groundbreaking to challenge ourselves and the philanthropic sector. We believed $100 million would inspire communities around the world to dream big. Seven years later, we continue to be moved and motivated by the public response to our call. As we begin this third round of the competition, we are excited to see where the next group of applicants will lead us and how they will bring about change in a lasting and meaningful way.
John Palfrey
President, MacArthur Foundation

About the MacArthur Foundation
The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation
supports creative people, effective institutions, and influential networks building a more just, verdant, and peaceful world. MacArthur is placing a few big bets that truly significant progress is possible on some of the world’s most pressing social challenges, including advancing global climate solutions, decreasing nuclear risk, promoting local justice reform in the U.S., revitalizing local news, and reducing corruption in Africa’s most populous country, Nigeria. In addition to the MacArthur Fellows Program and the global 100&Change competition, the Foundation continues its historic commitments to the role of journalism in a responsive democracy as well as the vitality of our headquarters city, Chicago.

About Lever for Change
Lever for Change
connects donors with bold solutions to the world’s biggest problems—including issues like racial inequity, gender inequality, lack of access to economic opportunity, and climate change. Using an inclusive, equitable model and due diligence process, Lever for Change creates customized challenges and other tailored funding opportunities. Top-ranked teams and challenge finalists become members of the Bold Solutions Network—a growing global network that helps secure additional funding, amplify members’ impact, and accelerate social change. Founded in 2019 as a nonprofit affiliate of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, Lever for Change has influenced over $1.7 billion in grants to date and provided support to more than 175 organizations. To learn more, visit

Are You Ready to

Solve a Problem?

We’re ready to fund a feasible, evidence-based, impactful, durable, and just solution.
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