January 7, 2021

In This Issue ...

Research Development in Practice
Funding Resources & Limited Submissions Opportunities
Events & Workshops


Apply for SPARC-MDD grants for drug discovery

Michigan Drug Discovery (MDD) and Sun Pharma Research Company (SPARC) are now accepting proposals for the SPARC-MDD Partnership Grants, which provide funding and collaborative support for drug discovery projects led by U-M faculty. Projects may receive up to $1.5 million in funding and support over a three-year period, including in-kind support. Applications are due March 1.

MDD and the Rogel Cancer Center will hold a virtual town hall 8:30-10 am on January 11 to answer questions about this funding program. The event will focus on translational therapeutic work in oncology, but SPARC is also interested in projects in neurodegeneration and immunoinflammation.

After the presentation, attendees can request 1:1 conversations with Joint Steering Committee members in Zoom breakout rooms to ask any questions.

Register for the town hall

"Take the Mic" contest taps community creativity to fight COVID-19

Have a catchy song you sing with your kids to make sure they wash their hands for 20 seconds? Is there a drawing that helps you remember to wear a mask in public? Is there someone you want to recognize for protecting themselves or others from COVID-19? If so, you can “take the mic” to share with your community. A diverse group of community, academic and public health partners have launched a contest to promote public health strategies to stop the spread of the virus and educate people on the benefits of getting vaccinated.

Funded by a nearly $1.4 million NIH grant to U-M researchers last month, the "Take the Mic" contest is part of a larger effort to address misinformation and mistrust around COVID-19, vaccine trials and the vaccine.

While submissions are unlimited, participants will be compensated $10 for up to two submissions (one per category) and must live in Wayne, Genesee, Kent or Washtenaw counties. Finalists will be chosen by a panel of community leaders. Prizes range from $100 to $500. Submissions close January 25

Details and contest entry

COVID-19 Data Science challenge launched

The International COVID-19 Data Alliance (ICODA) and Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation are piloting a COVID-19 Data Science grant program, as part of the foundation's larger Grand Challenges initiatives. This opportunity for up to $100,000 will lead to a larger data science call in late 2021. Initial submissions are due January 19

More information

Reminder: EFRC pink team reviews 

Collaborating across campuses, OVPR is offering an opportunity for teams to receive early feedback from faculty peers in advance of the spring 2021 internal competition for DOE's Energy Frontier Research Center (EFRC) program. The goal is to increase competitiveness of U-M teams nationally. Interested teams are strongly encouraged to participate in the early feedback process. 

Details about the EFRC opportunity (RFP expected this fall)  and more information about internal competition plans can be found HERE.

Key dates:

  • February 8, 2021: Early feedback materials due to OVPR (via the submission portal) (optional but strongly encouraged)
  • Week of February 22, 2021: Short presentations to faculty panel, feedback provided on project plans (optional but encouraged)
  • April 12, 2021: Spring internal competition deadline
  • May 2021: Notification of the two selected teams
  • Fall 2021: EFRC FOA released (expected)
  • January, 2022: EFRC deadline to DOE (expected)

Planning for grant renewal

Many NIH grants are eligible for Competing Continuation, or "renewal," toward progress on long-term goals (check the FOA and talk to a program officer to confirm renewal eligibility). Importantly, renewal applications, like all grant proposals, require careful planning—well before projects run low on funding.

When considering renewal, assess where the project started and where it has gone. Science evolves. Does it make sense to continue with the same long-term goal proposed years ago? Have recent advances in the field affected that goal? Is the overarching research question still as significant as it was when the original proposal was submitted?

A successful renewal will offer new specific aims (and, often, a new title) toward an existing long-term goal. Your team should have made progress in the first 3-4 years of the original grant and be ready to build on accomplishments. A renewal cannot be justified by simply continuing the same work (or completing work that was not finished previously).

Renewal applications may be justified if a researcher has found something novel in the previous project that warrants next steps; has found a new way to look at an old problem, or has a new collaborator that enables a new direction. Know the current literature. And even if you are submitting a proposal in the same field as before, a project that describes a new long-term goal will likely be a new application, not a renewal.

Keep in mind that reviewers will know your work by now and score any new proposal in relation to your previous projects and the impact you’ve made on the field; they will consider records of productivity, publications, new data and meaningful progress. 

Remember to consult program officers with any questions and to discuss which course may be right for you.

Read more:
NIAID: Apply for a Renewal


Internal Funding 

​All currently open U-M campus-wide internal funding programs are posted in Research Commons.


Following is a select list of Calls for Intent to Submit and Limited Submissions internal competitions, coordinated by the U-M Office of Research (UMOR) and the Medical School. For a comprehensive list of currently open opportunities, visit the UMOR Limited Submissions Homepage
Dr. Scholl Foundation Grants
Jan. 11, 2021- Internal Deadline
Mar. 1, 2021- Sponsor Deadline
Funding: $5,000-$25,000
2021 Packard Fellowships for Science and Engineering
Jan. 15, 2021- Internal Deadline
Mar. 16, 2021- Sponsor Deadline
Funding: see FOA
Limit: 2
Apply to UMOR
Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems: Health Integration Prenatal-to-Three Program
Jan. 15, 2021- Internal Deadline
Mar. 15, 2021- Sponsor Deadline
Funding: up to $255,600
Limit: 1
NIH Faculty Institutional Recruitment for Sustainable Transformation (FIRST) Program: FIRST Cohort (U54 Clinical Trial Optional)
Jan. 18, 2021- Internal Deadline
Mar. 1, 2021- Sponsor Deadline
Funding: $300,000
Limit: 1
Jan. 29, 2021- Internal Deadline
Mar. 31, 2021- Sponsor Deadline
Funding: $200,000-$400,000
Limit: 1
Diabetes Research Centers (P30 Clinical Trial Optional)
Mar. 19, 2021- Internal Deadline
May 20, 2021- Sponsor Deadline
Funding: $1,000,000/yr
Limit: 1
Declare Intent to Submit to UMOR


Below are select external funding opportunities. For assistance finding additional federal and private funding opportunities, researchers may access:
DOE Hydrogen and Fuel Cells R&D 2021
Jan. 15, 2021- Concept Paper Deadline
Funding: see FOA
Simons Foundation Collaboration Grants for Mathematicians
Jan. 28, 2021- Application Deadline
Funding: see FOA
NSF Mid-Scale Research Infrastructure-2 (Mid-Scale RI-2)
Feb. 3, 2021- LOI Deadline
Funding: $20,000,000-$100,000,000



Finding Funding Workshop

Hosted by U-M Research Development, presented by U-M Library experts
Wednesday, January 13
noon-1 pm

NSF MCA Program Workshop

Co-hosted by IRWG and MSU's GenCen
Thursday, January 14
1-3 pm

Everything You Need to Know about Copyright

Hosted by U-M Library
Wednesday, January 27
10-10:50 am

NORDP: Great Lakes Region Virtual Retreat

Hosted by Indiana University OVPR
January 27-29
Free; open to members & non-members

Copyright Essentials

Hosted by U-M Library
Tuesday, February 2
3-3:50 pm

Funding International Research for Graduate Students

Hosted by U-M Library
Wednesday, February 3
3-4 pm

Broader Impacts 101

Advancing Research in Society (ARIS)
Thursday, February 4
1-3 pm, $100 for non-members

2021 Communicating Science Seminar

AAAS Center for Public Engagement with S&T
Friday, February 5

Digital Scholarship 101: Understanding Accessibility

Hosted by U-M Library
Tuesday, February 16
1-2:30 pm


Advancing Research in Society (ARIS)
Thursday, February 18
2-4 pm, $100 for non-members
If you would like your event added to the newsletter, please contact
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