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What do you mean by a ‘game-changing idea’?

We’re looking for ideas that might change the way some of us do things, think about them or make them happen…. Ideas that are ‘disruptive’, that could change the landscape or the status quo… Ideas that are born in one of those ‘aha’ moments, when you suddenly see things really clearly.

Changing the game can be about developing something that’s totally new or completely radical; a new product or service or a new approach to how people work together, for instance. A few years ago, we might have been talking about a new crowdfunding platform as an example, or a new ticketing service.

Equally, it can be about someone taking something they’re doing already even further, and rolling it out more widely, or adapting it with new people or to a new situation. As an example, you might have a promoting model that you think could work for other people, or want to build a different kind of touring circuit.

Either works for us. We’re not being prescriptive about the kinds of ideas, how big or small they are, or what you can spend the money on. The important thing for us is that the ideas we fund are about alternative ways of thinking, doing and working with each other. Ideas that ultimately could help make the live music scene healthier, and enable us all to make a better and fairer living from it. This isn’t a fund to apply to if you want money simply to do what people already do – this is about testing what people might be doing in 3 or 4 years time, up and down the country. So, no applications for straight ahead conventional touring or putting on a normal looking gig please…

A key thing to remember though is that an idea is only a game-changer if it actually gets off the drawing board. And that’s where Joining the Dots comes in!

How do I know you won’t steal my idea?

Our aim with Joining the Dots is to help people develop ideas that they otherwise wouldn’t be able to – we’re doing this because, like you, we want a healthier, more robust, independent music scene. End of. So, yes, applying to Joining the Dots does mean sharing with us something you think is really special, but we can’t really hand out money without knowing what it’s for, can we? Rest assured, first of all, that the only people who’ll see your film or read about your idea during the application process are the Joining the Dots team. And, secondly, we hope you’ll be reassured to know that we’ll put together a bespoke intellectual property agreement with each project team we support. In short, we will treat what you tell us in confidence.

Beyond that, it’s probably worth reminding you that we want as many people as possible to benefit from the ideas we support. So, we do expect the people we fund to be up for sharing their ideas and their learning – via blogs, webinars and – hold your breath – in person, at Joining the Dots conferences and meet ups. If that’s not your style, then we’re probably not right for each other.

What’s the timeframe for delivering my project?

If you get through to Stage 2, we’ll let you know by the end of March 2014 if your application has been successful. If it has, you’ll then have until June 2015 to deliver your project.

Who are our project funders and partners?

Our funders are Arts Council England, Esmée Fairbairn Foundation, Kings College London and the Musicians’ Union. Our project partners are The Guardian Kings College London and EFDSS. We’re very grateful to them all for their support, and we’ll need you to credit them on your publicity material.

Read More: Eligibility Finance

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