iRFP Proposal

    Internal RFP from the Graduate School and the Office of Research and Innovation:

    Academic and Research Excellence for the 21st Century University

    The Graduate School and the Office of Research and Innovation are partnering to provide funding opportunities for innovative projects that will improve the quality of the educational experience for both graduate and undergraduate students and provide opportunities for faculty to thrive in their research and creative work. We seek proposals that will position the University of Louisville to be nationally prominent in emergent interdisciplinary areas of research and scholarship that will address the compelling problems that society faces. Recognizing that knowledge moves forward not only within disciplines but also in the intersections of disciplines or in combinations of disciplines, we seek proposals that recognize the complexity of societal and global problems and propose solutions that require contributions from multiple fields. Our hope is that we will seed interdisciplinary teams that are on the cutting edge of scholarship in areas that will be forward-looking and important to the future of the university and the world.

    The University of the 21st Century planning process identified a number of emergent areas of scholarship of interest to current faculty, but we want to emphasize that proposals are not limited to these areas. These are simply offered as illustrative of emergent areas for which proposals could be made: Internationalization and Global Health; Environment and Sustainability; Big Data; Metropolitan Engagement; Art/Creative Expression/Culture; Early Childhood; Optimal Living; Social Justice and Diversity; STEM-H Pedagogy; Infectious Disease and Vaccine Development.

    We are seeking proposals of two types:

    1) Proposals for nationally competitive and already established areas of interdisciplinary scholarship that with investment could rise to sustained national prominence

    2) Proposals for emergent areas of interdisciplinary research that would define the University of Louisville as a leader in the future

    Proposals that meet the following criteria will be prioritized:

    • All projects should be innovative and socially significant, capable of generating significant student interest and creating niche areas of excellence.
    • Projects should provide opportunities for graduate and undergraduate research, as well as for diversifying our student body.
    • Proposals should arise from current faculty interest and expertise, and they must be collaborative and multi-disciplinary.
    • PIs and senior team members must be nationally recognized scholars and researchers, and must serve as active mentors of junior faculty.
    • Proposals will require program/department/unit financial matches of at least one-to-one; matches could include the commitment of new faculty lines or graduate assistants, as well as other funding. Faculty and staff time on the project will not count as a match. Proposals must include letters of support from all deans of faculty included in the proposal.


    The proposal should be interdisciplinary and no more than 5 pages in length. Applicants must be full-time faculty members at the University of Louisville. There should be a designated Principal Investigator. The proposal should include:

    1. Project Background

    a. Current situation and importance to society, to include research-based evidence to support points outlined

    b. Project goals/specific aims

    2. Project Scope and Approach

    a. Project scope should include description of project and proposed outcomes.

    b. Project approach to include processes and methods necessary to accomplish goals/aims. The project approach should include scientific, technical and/or scholarly merit of the proposed multidisciplinary research and describe how it brings together faculty to carry out the proposed work, i.e., defining roles and responsibilities of the project team as they pertain to scope.

    c. Relationship to the 2020 Plan and the 21st Century University Strategic Mission, including opportunities for undergraduate research and increased diversity.

    d. Department/program/unit commitments (financial and personnel to the project); grant amount must be matched by at least a one-to-one commitment.

    3. Project Management Timeline and Expected Benefits

    a. Brief description of project management

    b. Project timeline and key milestones

    c. Expected outcomes and assessment plan

    4. Projected Impact on Society and University’s Mission

    a. Enhanced reputation of graduate programs

    b. Increased research opportunities for graduate and undergraduate students

    c. Increased research and scholarly productivity

      d. Increased competitiveness for grants and philanthropic funding

      5. Sustainability Plan

      a. Engrained structure and plan to grow beyond this investment

      b. Evidence of national funding program or philanthropic investment availability


      • Curriculum Vitae for faculty participants should be attached in the appendix, short version (< 5 pages each).
      • Attach the budget using the template (see below).
      • Letters from deans of all faculty on the team also must be included in the appendix.

        Budget to be included in Appendix:

        1. Budget itemization: Using the following categories, provide a detailed budget, and itemize any category totaling over $500.

          a. Supplies

          b. Animal care and use: Where appropriate, itemize expenses for animal purchase shipping and care. Include costs per animal, as well as numbers of animals and days of maintenance.

          c. Laboratory and other services: If fee‑for-service work is required (e.g. statistical analysis), so indicate. List the number of units of service required from the Methodology section, as well as the cost for each unit. Enter the total amount requested. Ideally such services should come from within the University community.

          d. Other expenses: Itemize by category.

          2. Budget justification: For any small equipment purchase, fee‑for‑service work and for each category of expense, provide a brief description of the intended use with sufficient detail to enable the reviewer to understand the relevance and necessity of the expense.

          3. Budget exclusions: All budget items must be fully justified, and the review will critically evaluate each item with regard to necessity, potential duplication and alternative means of support. In general, funding for consultants’ fees, clerical support, patient care and hospital costs will be difficult to justify. Existing faculty salaries, tuition and travel are not funded.

          Budget Template:

          Key Points:

          • Funds for up to $250,000 per year will be available for a funding period of up to three years (Maximum total award is $750,000).
          • All funds are one-time (not recurring), and there is no guarantee that additional recurring funds will become available after the period of the award.
          • Proposals will be both internally and externally peer reviewed.
          • Proposals must demonstrate that resources are aligned with the university mission and are financially sustainable.
          • Progress reports will be required annually for the duration of the award; a final report will be due at the end of the project.

            Submission Deadline is January 15, 2016, with funding expected to be available for project start dates of August 1, 2016.

            All proposals, including appendix, must be submitted electronically to

            Questions concerning the program may be directed to Dean Boehm or AVPRI Feldhoff



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