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Call for Azure Cloud Credit Proposals

The Stanford Institute for Human-Centered Artificial Intelligence is partnering with Microsoft to offer researchers the chance to submit proposals and receive up to $50,000 of credits to be used on Azure in support of novel, or emerging research that requires advanced computational resources provided by the commercial cloud. We also encourage potential users to put in a small proposal for initial exploration of cloud computing usability for their projects. 

Proposals will be more likely to succeed if they are expected to initiate or sustain meaningful interdisciplinary collaborations across the University and beyond. We will give preference to proposals that distinctively take advantage of Azure cloud capabilities and proposals that span more than one of the three HAI focus areas:

  1. Human Impact: Guiding, forecasting, and studying the human and societal impact of AI, domestically and globally
  2. Augmenting Human Capabilities: Designing and creating AI applications that augment human capabilities.
  3. Inspired Intelligence: Developing AI technologies inspired by the versatility and depth of human intelligence.

We expect to award approximately three large grants.

Submission Guidelines

Proposals are due on May 23, 2022. We plan to award the credits by June, 2022.

The proposal (no longer than 2 pages, excluding references, PDF, single-spaced, 11 point, 1 inch margins) should include the following components:

  • Background, problem statement and objectives (e.g. expected significance, relation to longer-term goals, relation to the present state of knowledge in the field, etc.)
  • Statement of Computational Work: Description of experimental methods and computational work, including how you will use the cloud credits for this work and why Azure cloud capabilities are key
  • Expected results or deliverables and timeline
  • Team involved

The submission form will also request a budget and a budget justification. Use Azure Cloud Credit Pricing Calculator to estimate usage and produce a budget. For the budget justification, briefly justify how the requested machine type(s) and estimated usage is suitable for the proposed work

Period of Performance: One calendar year from the date the account is successfully set up. Extensions are not permitted.


Proposals will be accepted from all Stanford researchers, however students or other researchers who do not have PI status will be required to secure endorsement of the proposal from their PI-eligible faculty mentor.

Reporting Requirements

Timely and substantive reporting of the value derived from cloud credits grants is important to HAI’s ability to continue and expand our grant programs. One year after account set up or upon exhaustion of the credits allocated, recipients must provide a final report of research results, credit usage, and a list of publications, articles, or conference talks emerging from the research.  

Grant recipients may also be requested to participate in a poster session to share their work with the HAI community, a short interview to describe their project and/or participate in a feedback survey to enable continuous improvement of HAI Cloud Credits Programs.

Data Security

Microsoft Azure Cloud Credits are suitable for low and moderate data as classified by the Information Security Office. If your project uses high risk data, you will be required to submit a Data Risk Assessment along with your proposal. Learn more about comprehensive information on classification.

 Applicant agrees to adhere to the Minimum Security Standards for Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) and Containerized Solutions and the Administrative Guide Section 6.3.1: Information Security.

Award Selection

These grants are made possible by a gift from Microsoft.  Award decisions will be made by Stanford HAI.  Please see our statements on HAI’s commitment to independence, and to transparency around our values and our fundraising policy, as well as Stanford’s policy on openness in research.

Application Form

Submit applications here