Rosin Fund – Environment

The Rosin Fund’s Environment Program will fund a limited number of innovative, short-term and high-impact projects that address critical environmental issues within the Program’s scope of interest. Target projects should demonstrate the potential to effect significant, transformative benefits both near-term and over time, within a project scope of one to three years and an overall budget in which the Fund’s grant plays a significant role. Proposals that reconceive environmental challenges as opportunities and present holistic, integrated solutions that address multiple problems will receive particular attention. Projects should offer measurable outcomes, preferably with the potential to multiply beneficial effects though scale and/or replication.

Projects may be focused internationally or domestically. Applicant organizations should demonstrate the ability to manage projects of the proposed size and complexity, as well as a commitment to the specific proposed project within any larger agenda. Proposals that seek to leverage Rosin Fund support with additional funds, as well as proposals that identify collaborative opportunities spanning multiple organizations, are welcome and encouraged.

The Foundation is interested in projects which cross its programmatic lines and, in particular, those that combine the Foundation’s environmental interests with the social justice goals of its Strengthening New York Communities Program. As such, the Foundation welcomes projects addressing the environmental concerns of low-income communities and communities of color..


Building on the values and strategies of the Foundation’s Core Environment Program, the Rosin Fund Environment Program will focus on two areas: Urban Sustainability and Sustainable Drinking Water. Each area is described briefly below.


Modern cities uniquely foster creative and economic activity by concentrating both people and resources. At the same time, continued urbanization creates increasingly distinct and daunting environmental concerns. Taken together, these factors create both a critical need and opportunities to address a wide variety of environmental challenges in the specific context of increasing urban density.

The Foundation will consider ground-breaking projects focused on new paradigms in sustainable urbanism including but not limited to: the redesign of the built environment, especially high rise commercial and residential structures, to improve quality of life and reduce harmful environmental impacts; the improvement of mass transit, as well as the expansion of transit-focused residential development; development of green infrastructure, from storm water management and drinking water systems to decentralized renewable electricity generation and green roofs; recycling and waste management; food quality and availability; urban agriculture; and open space development. Strategic approaches could include: advocacy and organizing; policy and regulatory and technical research and development; and public education.


The protection, and in some places the creation, of an adequate and accessible clean water supply is a global challenge of the first order. The challenge is inextricably linked to population growth and movement, as well as the current and potential impacts of climate disruption and competing demands for fresh water from agriculture and industry. Happily the visceral human connection with clean drinking water provides an opportunity to increase awareness of, and activism about, interconnected environmental issues.

The Foundation will consider breakthrough and replicable projects that seek to ensure that drinking water is clean and available, both domestically and globally. Areas of interest include but are not limited to: novel and improved water protection strategies and policies; efforts to create and deploy innovative new technologies; efforts to highlight corporate responsibility for water protection from a financially prudent, as well as a good citizenship, perspective; and the protection of water from extractive industries, including the growing threat of under-regulated hydraulic fracking. Strategies employed may include, but again are not limited to, demonstration projects, organizing and advocacy, policy and scientific research, public education, and media/communications, as well as unique approaches to catalyzing effective regulation and enforcement at the federal, state, and local levels.

Type & Size of Grants

Grants will range between $100,000 and $250,000 per year (with the possibility of larger grants for extraordinary innovations) and cover a period of one to three years.

To see our current grantees, please see the Katharine S. and Axel G. Rosin Fund.