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Innovative Seed Grant Program

2016 Innovative Seed Grant Competition (now closed)

2017 competition dates will be announced and updated here by January 2017. Timing of deadlines, reviews and notifications is expected to be similar to timing in 2016.

Learn more about the 2016 Innovative Seed Grant winners

2016 Key Dates:

1)    Grant Submission Deadline: February 14, 2016 at 11:59PM MST

2)    Grant Panel Reviews: March 2016

3)    Winner Notification: Early April 2016


Program Description

The Offices of the Provost and Vice Chancellor for Research are pleased to announce the 2016 Innovative Seed Grant competition (http://cuboulderovcr.secure-platform.com/a/solicitations/home/3031) to stimulate new and exciting areas of research and creative work on the CU Boulder campus. Funding up to $1M will be available to provide grants of up to $50,000 including $250K set aside to support work connected to the campus Grand Challenge (http://www.colorado.edu/grandchallenges/).

We are looking for research, scholarship, and creative projects that:

  • Involve new interdisciplinary initiatives that take investigators in creative, and sometimes high-risk, high-reward directions including team development proposals for future large team research projects
  • Have tangible payoffs in terms of future funding, scholarly or artistic impact, or development of new productive collaborations

The projects may take a variety of forms but must represent an investment in the future research, scholarly, or artistic vitality of the university and demonstrate promise for expansion of the project goals in the future. The projects can come from any discipline at the university, with those involving interdisciplinary work that will foster collaborative interaction among CU faculty particularly welcome. We would like to stress that proposals are judged in categories designed to allow faculty from all disciplines the opportunity to compete successfully, even if their discipline is not traditionally connected to sponsored research. We especially welcome proposals for work in emerging fields. 

This year, there is a new and unique opportunity for faculty who would like to become part of the campus Grand Challenge supporting Our Space. Our Future. and take the Challenge into new and exciting directions. Funding has been set aside for projects that branch out and strengthen the ongoing work and contribute to ensuring a global impact on our goals of improving our reputation, diversifying our revenue streams, and ensuring student success. These projects need to be distinctive from and synergistic with the Grand Challenge projects already underway. Applicants should clearly identify if their submitted proposal is in support of the Grand Challenge and how it will address and strengthen the goals of the university.


Interested Applicants

  • Applications for the Innovative Seed Grant Competition Program (IGP) are submitted electronically and reviewed by faculty volunteers.
  • Winners will be notified in April, and project funding will be available for use on July 1st of that year and will terminate after 18 months.

 Innovative Seed Grant Program (IGP) applications support research, scholarly, or creative projects that:

  • Involve new interdisciplinary initiatives that take investigators in creative, and sometimes high-risk, high-reward directions including team development proposals for future large team research projects
  • Have tangible payoffs in terms of future funding, scholarly or artistic impact, or development of new productive collaborations

New interdisciplinary or collaborative endeavors within CU faculty receive highly favorable consideration in this program.

Maximum budget requests are $50,000 per proposal for up to 18 months of work.


Eligibility

All Boulder Campus Tenured and Tenure Track Faculty, Senior Instructors, and Career Track Research Faculty (i.e., Research Professors Series, Senior Research Associates* (SRA), and Research Associates* (RA)) who hold an appointment of half-time or more, and who are eligible to submit a grant as a principal investigator (PI) to the Office of Contracts and Grants, are eligible to apply.

*RA/SRA in short-term, transitional postdoctoral training positions should not apply as the intent of this award is to foster new and innovative programs of research and scholarly inquiry that will be of long-term benefit to CU-Boulder.

Only one responsible PI for each application. Collaborators are expected, but no Co-PI's.

  • Applicants may submit no more than one proposal as a PI.

IGP recipients from the past two years are not eligible to apply this year.

  • Projects with a major scientific or budgetary overlap with the PI's active research support are not eligible.
  • Projects with a primary focus on curriculum development are not eligible.
  • Applicants with existing resources that could be used to fund their proposal are discouraged

Requirements

All applications will need to include the following:

  • Project Title
  • Project Summary: Provide a concise lay summary (350 words maximum) of the project and explain how it will foster future research vitality - scholarly and/or artistic - at CU-Boulder.
  • Principal Investigator name, e-mail, and department (only one PI per project; no Co-PIs)
  • Curriculum Vitae: Upload the Principal Investigator PDF file.
  • Collaborators and their roles, if applicable, (Name, Institution, Unit/Dept) whose participation significantly expands the scope and or direction of the proposed research or creative work.
  • Amount Requested (no overhead or indirect costs allowed).
  • Desired Review Venues
    • Arts & Humanities
    • Basic Physical Sciences
    • Biomedical Sciences
    • Engineering & Applied Sciences
    • Geosciences & Environmental Sciences
    • Grand Challenge
    • Social Sciences & Professional Schools
  • Project Budget and Justification File: Clearly itemize, by category, the major expenditures that will be required to carry out the proposal. No overhead or indirect costs may be included. Also, concisely provide a justification of the items requested in the budget. Budgets are intended to support graduate students/postdocs, requests solely for faculty salary support are discouraged. Faculty course or teaching buy-out is not allowed. Focus particular attention on providing a justification of items listed in your budget that may not be obvious to reviewers who are familiar with but are not experts in your specific field of research or creative work. Include how much/who/what. Upload as a PDF file.
  • Project Plan: Attach a Research Plan that briefly describes the aims, significance, methods, and expected outcomes of the project, highlighting how it involves a new and creative direction for the researchers and has the potential for establishing new research directions and/or high future payoff. Upload as a PDF file. Maximum length is 3 pages.
  • Selected honors and awards/Representative Scholarly Work or Publications Relevant to this Proposal: Be sure to highlight those published works that are directly relevant to your ability to carry out the proposed project.
  • Other Research Support: Identify all currently active support, or support that will be active as of next fiscal year. Include agency, amount, project title, and award duration.
  • A research data management plan - please look at: https://data.colorado.edu/ to learn more. Data Management Plan Resource: dmptool.org. Log in with your IdentiKey username and password.

Data Management Best Practices

Remember, the projects may take any variety of forms but must represent an investment in the future research, scholarly, or artistic vitality of the university and demonstrate promise for expansion of the project goals in the future. The projects can come from all and any disciplines at the university, with those involving interdisciplinary work that will foster interaction among CU faculty particularly welcome.
  • Proposals should use clear writing appropriate for non-specialists and make a strong case for the importance of the project to those outside the area of study.
  • Include the PI's name and the year of application within the document title, e.g., RMooreResearchPlan2016.pdf.
  • Attachments must be in Adobe Acrobat .pdf format.
  • Documents should be in Arial 11-point type with at least 0.5" margins and be no longer than 3 pages in length, including charts/figures.
  • You may add up to 2 additional pages for literature citations at the end of the Research Plan, for an absolute total of five pages.

Background Information

The 2016 Innovative Seed Grant Competition resulted in 23 new grants for a total of $1 million being awarded to Boulder faculty across all disciplines.

In 2006, the Offices of the Provost and Vice Chancellor for Research pooled funds for an annual campus-wide seed grant program intended to stimulate new and exciting areas of research and creative work on the CU-Boulder campus. Since that time, seed grants totaling $9.2 million have been awarded to 215 faculty researchers and research teams for research, scholarship, and creative projects that:

  • involve new interdisciplinary initiatives that take investigators in creative, and sometimes high-risk, high-reward directions including team development proposals for future large team research projects
  • have tangible payoffs in terms of future funding, scholarly or artistic impact, or development of new productive collaborations

The projects may take a variety of forms but must represent an investment in the future research, scholarly, or artistic vitality of the university and demonstrate promise for expansion of the project goals in the future. The projects can come from any discipline at the university, with those involving interdisciplinary work that will foster interaction among CU faculty particularly welcome. Consistent with legislative intent and university policy, the state-appropriated operating funds allocated to carry out the role and mission of the institution, and specifically earmarked for the Innovative Seed Grant Program, must be expended solely for the designated purpose.


Questions?

Contact Ryan Reeves at innovate@colorado.edu

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