Thanks for the question! A few thoughts in response:
First, we think the likelihood that we have to ask a grantee to return their funding is quite low. BERI will aim to choose candidates with integrity who will make a good faith attempt at completing their proposed project. We expect several of the projects we fund will fail, and that's OK—we suspect the learnings from these failures will still be sufficiently valuable to justify the expense to BERI.
Second, we'd be happy to make arrangements with any grantees who were particularly nervous about this aspect of our program. Monthly or quarterly check-ins could be one such arrangement; clear, upfront agreements about what would count as "a strong effort" to complete a project could be another. We're open to other proposals from grantees too.
Thanks for pointing that out; I'll edit the post. You're right that this was drafted a while ago, and only posted now. The hold-up was the announcement of the EA Profiles integration - we first needed a more automated system to deal with all of the new EA Profiles coming in!