uconn health

Research Communications

What We Do

The UConn Research Communications team is responsible for promoting and disseminating research conducted at the university. Our primary functions include:

  • Public Relations
    • We write and distribute press releases and manage media inquiries related to research conducted at UConn.
  • Science Communication
    • The team works to translate complex research findings into accessible language for the general public, especially by producing content for the university’s house media outlet, UConn Today.
  • Social Media and Web Presence
    • Research Communications manages social media accounts (X, LinkedIn, and Instagram), the university’s research websites (internal and external), and online publications to keep the public informed about ongoing research projects and their outcomes.
  • Event Promotion
    • Research Communications helps organize and promote events related to research, such as lectures, seminars, and conferences. This helps in engaging the public and other stakeholders.
  • Internal Communications
    • In addition to external communication, our team ensures that research findings and news are effectively communicated within the university community.
  • Graphic Design and Multimedia
    • Our talented graphic designers and multimedia specialists help create visually appealing materials to accompany research communications, such as infographics, videos, and other visual content.
  • Media Training
    • We provide media training to researchers and UConn service units to help them effectively communicate their work to the public and the press.

Get in Touch

Need our services? For internal inquiries (UConn researchers/faculty/staff), submit a ticket with the specifics of your request. This helps us streamline our response and will ensure the quickest turnaround.

For external inquiries and other requests, email us.

Communications Support Request Form

The Research Communications team supports UConn faculty and researchers with the following communications deliverables and services:

  • UConn Today Stories
  • Press Releases
  • Website update (for ovpr.uconn.edu and ovpr.uchc.edu only)
  • Social Media Posts or Graphics
  • Design Project
  • Presentation Decks
  • Photography/Videography
  • Social Media Training
  • Communications Etiquette Training
  • Other Special Projects

To request any of the above, please fill out our support request form, and our team will be happy to assist you.

Internal Funding Budget Guidelines

The proposal budget is the financial plan of action that reflects the costs required to perform the proposed work statement. The following information has been prepared to help you develop your budget plan. It is important to demonstrate that the budget proposed is reasonable. 

A budget justification should be submitted to allow for each budget category to be explained relative to the proposed research. The budget justification explains how the estimated costs for the categories were derived and explains the need for the cost. Budgets should be prepared for the entire proposed project.  

Download and save the budget sheet template to your computer: Budget sheet (FY25) for FY24 competitions  

 The following categories are generally included in the preparation of a proposal budget: 

  • Salary: List all personnel, including the names and roles devoted to the project. 
  • Fringe benefits: Automatically computed on the budget sheet template except for ‘other,’ refer to Storrs/Regional Fringe Benefit Rates and UCH Fringe Benefit Rates. 
  • Equipment: Tangible, non-expendable, individual property having an anticipated life of one year or more with a unit acquisition cost of $5,000 or greater. For information see equipment definitions on the accounting website. 
  • Travel (transportation & Per Diem): Includes any travel necessary to conduct research (in support of specific project aims). For information on travel procedures and processes, see the travel website. 
  • Materials & Supplies: Any consumable not falling into the category of equipment, as defined above. 
  • Participant Support: Indicate incentives, travel, and other subsistence costs necessary for the project. 
  • Animals/Animal Care: Animal costs should reflect the type of animal, the number of animals and the unit cost per animal. Per Diem costs should list the number of days of Per Diem. Please refer to OAC for per diem rates. 
  • Contractual Services: Fees and charges for specialized services, such as library access fees, laboratory analysis fees, consultant fees, subject fees, etc. 

General guidelines regarding allowable/unallowable costs that are consistent with other OVPR internal funding opportunities. If you have a budget need that does not fit within these guidelines, please reach out to the OVPR Research Development Internal Funding team at research@uconn.edu to discuss options.  

    Allowable costs include:  

    • Graduate Research Assistants
      • AY Graduate Research Assistantships (20 hour/week).  Can choose GA level and specify percentage effort on the project.
      • Summer. You may request up to $2000 per student per annum.
    • Postdoc or other research assistant/technician salary 
      • Postdoc stipends should follow the NIH NRSA stipend levels. You may enter the base salary of each postdoc and record the postdoc’s effort percentage on this project.
    • Student Labor. Undergraduate student labor is paid on an hourly basis, plus fringe benefits. Please refer to the student employment website for levels of experience and compensation. Please enter the total amount you are budgeting for all undergraduate student labor costs
    • Summer Fellowships. Storrs/regional campus faculty members on nine-month appointments may receive salary during the summer months. A maximum of $3,000 per award (plus fringe) may be requested for single PI proposals and $5,000 per award (plus fringe) for Multi-PI proposals (limit $3K per PI). The request for summer funds must be carefully justified. For more information, contact the OVPR.
    • Course buyouts   
      • Course buyout may be requested for Storrs/regional campus faculty, but the PI must explain why release time is vital to the project. Faculty requesting funds for course buy-outs must include a statement of support from the department head.
        • ‘The department supports a course buyout for ‘PI name’s’ application for the ‘award name’ program entitled ‘project title,’ under the OVPR’s terms for the inclusion of course buyouts in internal funding awards.’
      • Amount requested cannot exceed the minimum per-credit adjunct rate for the course being replaced.  For more information, contact the OVPR.
      • Limit of one per PI (Principal Investigators) per project
      • Please refer to the payroll department.
    • Fringe costs 
    • Equipment purchases 
    • Travel to conduct research or meet with collaborators (travel approval may be required) 
    • Materials and supplies 
    • Participant support costs 
    • Animal/animal care costs 
    • Contractual services (including fee-for-service contracts with partner institutions)  

    Unallowable costs include:  

    • Subawards to partner institutions 
    • Faculty member salaries 
    • Clerical or administrative personnel salaries 
    • Including personnel whose primary purpose is to explore funding sources and/or prepare grant applications 
    • Service/maintenance contracts on equipment 
    • Laboratory renovations, or other infrastructure renovations 
    • Institutional memberships in professional organizations 
    • Computers, laptops, tablets, or other standard office equipment (computers that serve a specialized research function beyond what standard office equipment can provide are allowable) 
    • Travel to professional meetings to present the results of the research 
    • Travel to explore extramural funding opportunities 
    • Costs associated with the publication of results of the research including page charges, purchase of reprints, or journal costs. 

     

    SPS Guidance Regarding Potential Federal Government Shutdown

    UConn Sponsored Program Services is closely monitoring developments in Washington, D.C., and evaluating the likelihood of a federal government shutdown and its potential impact on UConn research activity. The U.S. Government is currently operating under a Continuing Resolution, which extends the deadline for passage of spending bills through March 1, 2024.

    As with previous federal government shutdowns, researchers with active federally sponsored grants and contracts will generally be instructed to continue work unless the project requires significant involvement of federal employees. Investigators may receive instructions from their contracting or program officers; if you receive such information, please notify your SPS contact noted below, immediately. Federal personnel will not be available.

    No sponsor-specific guidance on how a potential federal government shutdown may impact submission of new or competing proposal submissions has yet been provided, though agencies have developed Contingency Plans. We anticipate that some agencies will not be available to process proposals and that others will retain submitted proposals for processing when normal operations resume. If you are preparing an application or progress report for an upcoming submission deadline, please continue to prepare those documents for an on-time submission; however, we encourage you to monitor further updates for specific guidance and the potential for those deadlines to be extended.

    SPS will continue to monitor agency specific communications regarding the potential shutdown and provide detailed updates and specific guidance via this page and email.

    Storrs SPS Contacts

    UCH SPS Contacts

     

    Award Report

    After awards are made and the project has been completed, the OVPR (Office of the Vice President for Research) would like to evaluate project progress and to learn more about the impact of the work that has been done. Please email research@uconn.edu with a 1–2-page narrative that includes the following:  

    • Cover: title, team, funding mechanism, date of award, etc.  
    • Summary (brief): of the project aims/goals and the results to date.  
    • Project Outcomes (if relevant): publications, grant applications, grant awards, invention disclosures, patents, other “products.”  
    • Project Impacts (if relevant): discipline impacts, institutional impacts (students, teaching, infrastructure etc.), economic impacts, community impacts  
    • Anticipated next steps (if relevant): follow-on projects, dissemination plans, external funding strategy, commercialization, etc.  

       After the award period ends, we are interested in receiving updates on outcomes from the award. We understand that the full realization of many projects may appear sometime after the funded work is complete. After this initial report is submitted, we will contact you in the future for updates on the project’s longitudinal impacts.   

       

      SCRO Policies, Regulations & Guidance

      For a detailed description of UConn/UConn Health SCRO Committee policies, please consult the SCRO Policy Manual document.

      For additional resources, please check out the following links:

      Training for Users of Stem Cells

      University policy requires all researchers and research staff, including students, post-docs, visitors, and faculty, to pass the Human Stem Cell Compliance tutorial quiz with 100% accuracy prior to engaging in research. The tutorial is intended to educate researchers on ethical issues associated with hESC and hiPSC research and inform them of relevant institutional, state, and federal policies and procedures.

      The tutorial is not required for those conducting in vitro human induced pluripotent stem cell (hiPSC) research involving the generation of gametes, embryos, or other totipotent cells. The tutorial is also not required for research that requires SCRO review to secure State of Connecticut funding but otherwise would not fall under SCRO’s jurisdiction (i.e., non-human stem cells, etc.). All other research requires that research staff complete the tutorial prior to beginning work on approved SCRO projects.

      To access the tutorial, quiz, and the sheet to record your answers, click on the links below. Return your answer sheet to SCRO Coordinator, Ellen Ciesielski, eciesielski@uchc.edu. You will be notified of your quiz results and receive a certificate upon successful completion.

      Coordination with Other Oversight Committees

      The SCRO Committee does not replace the oversight of the Institutional Biosafety Committee (IBC), Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) or Institutional Review Board (IRB), or alter the scope of review of these committees. Protocols that normally require IBC, IACUC and/or IRB approval continue to require these approvals. Investigators have the responsibility of submitting the required documents to the relevant oversight committees. If any component of the research project is conducted at an institution other than UConn, the SCRO Committee must receive documentation that the relevant approvals (IBC, IACUC, or IRB) have been obtained at the institution where the research is conducted.

      The SCRO Committee has the final sign-off on stem cell protocol approvals. Final SCRO Committee approval will not be given until the SCRO Committee receives documentation of all required IBC, IACUC and IRB approvals. Continued SCRO approval is contingent upon all other relevant approvals being current. Parallel review with the SCRO Committee and the IRB, IBC or IACUC is permitted. Investigators may submit their protocol applications to the SCRO Committee while IRB, IBC or IACUC approval is pending or after it is granted.

      • IBC: All use of recombinant DNA or hazardous biological materials (human cells) must be approved by the Institutional Biosafety Committee(s) at the campus(es) where the research will be conducted.
      • IACUC: All use of animals must be approved by the IACUC(s) at the campus(es) where the research will be conducted.
      • IRB: Because oversight issues of the IRB and the SCRO Committee are intertwined, it is recommended that the IRB and SCRO Committee reviews occur in parallel. Approval must be obtained from the IRB(s) at the campus(es) where the research will occur. Investigators should submit a copy of their IRB application to the SCRO Committee along with their SCRO Committee application. A UConn IRB must review and approve stem cell research protocols for:
        • Informed consent for the donation of human embryos, gametes, or somatic cells from human subjects to UConn researchers;
        • Receiving and coding for human biological materials with personal donor identifiers;
        • Implanting stem cells into human subjects.

        Documentation for acquired cells

        All stem cell projects are required to have proper documentation for the hESC and hiPSC lines that faculty plan to use before the SCRO Committee can provide final approval.

        • Cells derived at another institution or outside UConn require an executed Material Transfer Agreement (MTA).
        • Cells coming from the UConn Stem Cell Core facility but developed and owned elsewhere such as the WiCell Stem Cell Bank lines that are banked at the Core require a shortened Materials Transfer Agreement (MTA) known as a Short Letter Agreement (SLA). The procedures for obtaining these cells and the required documentation are detailed on the Core website: https://health.uconn.edu/stem-cell-core/services/distribution-of-human-pluripotent-stem-cell-lines/.
        • Investigators who plan to use hESC/iPSC lines that have not been previously approved by the UConn SCRO Committee must provide documentation of their provenance and their ethical derivation. This documentation includes:
          • A copy of the fully executed Material Transfer Agreement (MTA)
          • Evidence of IRB approval at the relevant institution
          • Documentation of the informed consent process in sufficient detail to allow for evaluation of conformity with State of Connecticut Regulations, National Academy of Science Guidelines, and standards of the UConn SCRO Committee and IRB.

        UConn Quantum Innovation Seed Grants

        Advances in quantum science have the potential to have transformative social and economic impact.  New technologies are poised to revolutionize major industries, creating opportunities for new applications that will fuel economic growth.

        The UConn Quantum Innovation Seed Grant program is designed to encourage and catalyze collaboration among researchers from UConn, Yale University and other regional academic partners, corporate/industry partners, and other stakeholders to explore, develop, and translate innovations and applications related to quantum technologies.  Building on existing strengths at UConn and within partner organizations across the region, this program seeks to support the development of use-inspired applications of quantum technologies relevant to the following research areas and industries:

        • New materials and manufacturing methods for fabricating quantum devices
        • Quantum computing and algorithms; quantum assisted optimization, quantum simulation
        • Advancements in data science, artificial intelligence, and machine learning
        • Quantum information technologies, quantum sensing and cryptography

        Quantum science is expected to have direct applications in industries in which Connecticut has a strong presence and workforce:

        • Healthcare and biotechnology
        • Insurance and financial tech
        • Cybersecurity
        • Aerospace
        • Pharmaceuticals
        • Defense
        • Other use sectors

        This program is offered as a companion program to the Quantum-CT Regional Innovation Engine project. Quantum-CT, led by UConn and Yale University, is an effort to build an innovation ecosystem of researchers, educators, industry, and state/local stakeholders to harness the economic impact of new quantum-enabled technologies through technology development, innovation and entrepreneurship, and advances in STEM education and workforce development.

         

        Program Timeline

        • Program opens 8/21/23.
        • Submissions to be made through the UConn Quest Portal.UConn Quest Portal.
        • Proposal deadline 10/30/23

        Eligibility

        The Quantum-CT Innovation Seed Grant program is available to UConn / UConn Health researchers, within the following parameters:

        • Primary Appointment:
          • PIs must be faculty whose primary appointment is at UConn and/or UConn Health
          • Individuals who are not eligible to apply as a PI may be able to serve as a collaborator/consultant on an eligible PI’s project. (external PIs qualify the project as a multi-PI effort)
        • Effort and Salary:
          • Although no minimum effort level is required, a PI/Co-PI must have institutionally-funded research time available during the award period.
          • Research Professors / those whose positions are contingent on grant-funding (soft money positions) must include details about their institutionally-funded research time as part of the budget justification to confirm eligibility.
          • PIs/Co-PIs must each make significant and distinct intellectual contributions to the design and direction of the project.
        • Eligible Faculty Ranks:
          • Awards are available to tenure-track, tenured, Clinical, Research, and in-Residence faculty with Assistant Professor rank or higher.
        • Eligible faculty may only submit one proposal as lead PI. Investigators may serve as collaborator on multiple projects.
        • Single-PI proposals will not be considered.  Projects that include external industry/academic collaborations are strongly preferred.

        Award Details

        • Awards of up to $50K will be made.
        • One year award periods are expected though alternate timelines can be proposed.
        • It is expected that the project will draw on the team’s collective research capacity to co-develop novel applications of quantum technologies that will address real world challenges or opportunities.  It is also expected that the projects proposed will include significant involvement (co-creation, co-direction) by external/community stakeholders and that they will lead to significant broader impacts.
        • Eligible projects may be at any stage in the development process (from early-stage basic science work through proof of concept and prototyping), but they must be use-inspired and moving towards translation.
        • Applications that include matching funding from partnering organizations are highly encouraged.
        • Funds can be used to support research and translational activities at UConn/UConn Health.  Salary for external partner researchers and funding for research activities at other institutions/industrial partners must be supported by those institutions/partners. Contractual services support can be included to support the engagement of non-profits or community groups.
        • Review of full proposals will be carried out by a team of peer reviewers.
        • Applicants should be positioning themselves to seek external funding (research grants, SBIR/STTR, industry partnership, etc) to continue work at the end of the seed grant period.  Applicants are expected to address their external funding strategy as part of their applications and submit invention disclosures to TCS upon completion of the project.

              Submission Instructions

              • Applications will be accepted through the Quest Portal.
                • UConn/UConn Health applicants can use their NetIDs to access the system.
              • Proposals should include:
                • Applicant information form (available on Quest): PI Name, Home Department, School/College, email, phone, academic rank, primary employer.
                • Quantum-CT Innovation Seed Grant application form (available on Quest): project title, team members (with roles and affiliations), project abstract, amount requested
                • Project Description (PDF Upload): Proposals should address the following areas and should not exceed 5 pages in length (1” margins, 11-12pt fonts, single spacing and single side pages, cover page and references do not count against page limit):
                  • Cover Page: Title of Project, Principal investigator(s) with contact information, List of other team members (including affiliation, role, area of expertise)
                  • Significance/Importance: Provide a clear and compelling rationale for why the proposed project matters. Indicate how the proposed project will advance knowledge, address an important research question related to this track, and meet specific, use-inspired needs or opportunities.
                  • Approach and Timeline: Describe the plan for carrying out the proposed activities, including research design, work plan, and methodological approach.  Describe the timeline projected for completing this work.  If applicable, include hypotheses to be tested, specific goals/aims, and relevant background/information or preliminary data in support of the project.
                  • Innovation/Novelty: Outline the ways in which this project’s proposed work is new/innovative in its approach, methods, techniques, or applications in comparison to previous work in the field.
                  • Feasibility and Resources: Explain the feasibility of the work proposed, describing the availability of necessary resources and other factors that may impact the completion of the project.
                  • Team: Describe how the PI and/or collaborators are well-suited to carry out the proposed project. For Multi-PI proposals, indicate how the project brings together individuals from different disciplines and how the collaboration will advance the proposed project.
                  • Impact and Outcomes: Indicate the value or impact of the proposed project, once complete. How does the project reflect institutional, state, national, and/or global priorities? In what ways will the results of this work be transformative within its discipline and beyond? What broader societal benefits does it promise? What is your plan / mechanism for assessing the project’s success and evaluating outcomes?
                • Budget: Describe and justify the use of Quantum-CT funds in this Internal Budget Funding template
                • Biosketches / CVs for all PIs and Co-PIs: Please include an updated biosketch consistent with NSF format.
                • NSF-style Letters of support from any facilities/partner organizations providing support during the award period

              Budget Guidelines

              Please see the general budget guidelines for the OVPR Research Development Internal Funding awards.

              Review Criteria

              Significance

              • Does the project address an important use-inspired need or opportunity?
              • Is the project’s intellectual rationale clear and persuasive?
              • Does the project advance research in quantum technology in meaningful and significant ways?
              • Does the project’s conception, definition, organization, and description reflect the highest quality and excellence?

              Approach/Timeline

              • To what degree does the proposal outline a clearly articulated and well-reasoned plan of action?
              • If applicable, were the hypotheses, aims, and/or goals clearly articulated, well-reasoned, and adequately supported?
              • Are the conceptual / theoretical frameworks and methods adequately developed and clearly articulated?  To what degree are they appropriate to the aims of the project and reflective of intellectual rigor/artistic excellence?
              • Is the timeline adequate for achieving goals and meeting the project aims? For proposals requesting funding to exceed one year, is the request justified and supported?

               Innovation/Novelty

              • Is the project original and innovative? Does the project challenge existing paradigms, methods, approaches, applications, theories, practice and/or barriers to progress in the field(s)?

              Feasibility and Resources

              • To what degree is the project, as described in proposal, achievable?  Are there any concerns about feasibility?
              • Are the resource and time available for this project adequate to ensure success?
              • Does the environment in which the work will be done contribute to the probability of success?
              • Does the proposed project benefit from unique features of the environment such as technical assistance/tools, translational expertise, and/or facilities support?

               Investigators/Collaborators

              • Are the PI, collaborators, and other personnel well-suited to carry out the project?
              • Do the investigators have complementary and integrated expertise?
              • Does the team demonstrate an ongoing/emerging record of accomplishments that have advanced the respective field(s)?

              Impact and Outcomes

              • Is the proposed project compelling and if successful, would it make a meaningful disciplinary or interdisciplinary contribution and/or advancement?
              • Does the project have strong potential for producing valuable societal benefits?
              • Does the project have high potential for national or international recognition and achievement?
              • Does the proposal provide a mechanism to assess success and provide an adequate plan for evaluation of outcomes?
              • Where appropriate, does the project provide a sound dissemination and/or access plan?

              Budget Evaluation

              • Is the project budget appropriate and sufficient to carry out the proposed work?
              • Are the budget requests adequately justified, clearly articulated, and necessary for the scope of work and timeline?
              • Would you recommend any reduction in the budget?

              Funding Recommendations:

              Reviewers will be asked to make funding recommendations based on the merits of each proposal.

              Post-award considerations and Program Contacts

              Post-award considerations

              • Reporting requirements: PIs will need to prepare a brief report, using this Award Report Template to summarize project progress at the end of the award period.
              • Further reports on project outcomes may be requested in the future to track return on investment.

              Program Contacts

              • Administrative contact: Charlotte Nelson, Internal Funding Coordinator. research@uconn.edu;

              UConn Innovations in Quantum STEM Education

              Advances in quantum science have the potential to have transformative social and economic impact.  New technologies are poised to revolutionize major industries, creating opportunities for new applications that will fuel economic growth.

              Taking full advantage of emerging quantum technologies requires a STEM-educated workforce that is ready to put these new technologies to work.  The Innovations in Quantum STEM Education program seeks to inspire and seed research into quantum-ready STEM education and workforce training that will enable our communities to rise to meet the new employment opportunities that quantum technologies will bring.  We encourage collaborations between UConn and Yale faculty, as well as other academic, workforce development, and corporate/industry partner organizations, to pursue innovative educational research related to quantum.  We particularly encourage collaborations that include faculty from quantum-related fields, STEM Education or curriculum development, and/or digital media and design.

              Areas of interest include (but are not limited to): assessing the current state of STEM education approaches in our region and our readiness for quantum, developing/testing new educational approaches to teaching quantum-related STEM concepts, developing training modules and game-based techniques for teaching quantum concepts, developing/implementing quantum-informed curriculum plans for all educational levels, and developing/implementing quantum-informed workforce development approaches for specific industries.

              This program is offered as a companion program to the Quantum-CT Regional Innovation Engine project. Quantum-CT, led by UConn and Yale University, is an effort to build an innovation ecosystem of researchers, educators, industry, and state/local stakeholders to harness the economic impact of new quantum-enabled technologies through technology development, innovation and entrepreneurship, and advances in STEM education and workforce development.

               

              Program Timeline

              • Program opens 8/21/23.
              • Submissions to be made through the UConn Quest Portal.
              • Proposal deadline 10/30/23

              Eligibility

              The Innovations in Quantum STEM Education program is available to UConn / UConn Health researchers, within the following parameters:

              • Primary Appointment:
                • PIs must be faculty whose primary appointment is at UConn and/or UConn Health
                • Individuals who are not eligible to apply as a PI may be able to serve as a collaborator/consultant on an eligible PI’s project.
              • Effort and Salary:
                • Although no minimum effort level is required, a PI/Co-PI must have institutionally-funded research time available during the award period.
                • Research Professors / those whose positions are contingent on grant-funding (soft money positions) must include details about their institutionally-funded research time as part of the budget justification to confirm eligibility.
                • PIs/Co-PIs must each make significant and distinct intellectual contributions to the design and direction of the project.
              • Eligible Faculty Ranks:
                • Awards are available to tenure-track, tenured, Clinical, Research, and in-Residence faculty with Assistant Professor rank or higher.
              • Eligible faculty may only submit one proposal as lead PI. Investigators may serve as collaborator on multiple projects.

              Award Details

              • Awards up to $25K are available for projects involving at least 1 UConn/UCH PI.
              • Awards up to $50K are available for projects that include PIs in at least two of the following three areas: quantum-adjacent fields, STEM education or curriculum development, and digital media and design.
              • One year award periods are expected, though alternate timelines can be proposed.
              • Teams must include a UConn/UConn Health PI.  Collaborations among Education researchers, STEM/Quantum researchers, and other disciplines such as Digital Media and Design is strongly encouraged.
              • External partnerships with co-PIs/collaborators from Yale University and other academic partners, the CT State Department of Education, CT public schools, or corporate/industry partners are also strongly encouraged.
              • It is expected that the project will draw on the team’s collective research capacity to co-develop innovations in STEM education related to quantum readiness.  It is also expected that the projects proposed will include significant involvement (co-creation, co-direction) by external/community stakeholders and that they will lead to significant broader impacts.
              • Proposing teams must be diverse, including investigators from underrepresented groups and a mixture of early-career and more senior investigators.
              • Eligible projects may approach the question of quantum readiness from any angle, as long as the project is developed with eventual implementation in mind.
              • Funds can be used to support research and translational activities at UConn/UConn Health.  Salary and funding for research activities at other academic institutions must be supported by those institutions – subawards are not allowed. Contractual services support can be included to support the engagement of educators, non-profits, or community groups.
              • Review of full proposals will be carried out by a team of peer reviewers.
              • Applicants should be positioning themselves to seek external funding (research grants, industry partnership, etc) to continue work at the end of the seed grant period.  Applicants are expected to address their external funding strategy as part of their applications and (if applicable) submit invention disclosures to TCS upon completion of the project.

                  Submission Instructions

                  • Applications will be accepted through the Quest Portal.
                    • UConn/UConn Health applicants can use their NetIDs to access the system.
                  • Proposals should include:
                    • Applicant information form (available on Quest): PI Name, Home Department, School/College, email, phone, academic rank, primary employer.
                    • Quantum-CT Innovation Seed Grant application form (available on Quest): program track, team members (with roles and affiliations), project abstract, amount requested.
                    • Project Description (PDF Upload): Proposals should address the following areas and should not exceed 5 pages in length (1” margins, 11-12pt fonts, single spacing and single side pages, cover page and references do not count against page limit):
                      • Cover Page: Title of Project, Principal investigator(s) with contact information, List of other team members (including affiliation, role, area of expertise)
                      • Significance/Importance: Provide a clear and compelling rationale for why the proposed project matters. Indicate how the proposed project will advance knowledge, address an important research question related to this track, and meet specific, use-inspired needs or opportunities.
                      • Approach and Timeline: Describe the plan for carrying out the proposed activities, including research design, work plan, and methodological approach.  Describe the timeline projected for completing this work.  If applicable, include hypotheses to be tested, specific goals/aims, and relevant background/information or preliminary data in support of the project.
                      • Innovation/Novelty: Outline the ways in which this project’s proposed work is new/innovative in its approach, methods, techniques, or applications in comparison to previous work in the field.
                      • Feasibility and Resources: Explain the feasibility of the work proposed, describing the availability of necessary resources and other factors that may impact the completion of the project.
                      • Team: Describe how the PI and/or collaborators are well-suited to carry out the proposed project. For Multi-PI proposals, indicate how the project brings together individuals from different disciplines and how the collaboration will advance the proposed project.
                      • Impact and Outcomes: Indicate the value or impact of the proposed project, once complete. How does the project reflect institutional, state, national, and/or global priorities? In what ways will the results of this work be transformative within its discipline and beyond? What broader societal benefits does it promise? What is your plan / mechanism for assessing the project’s success and evaluating outcomes?
                    • Budget: Describe and justify the use of Quantum-CT funds in this Internal Budget Funding template
                    • Biosketches / CVs for all PIs and Co-PIs: Please include an updated biosketch consistent with NSF format.
                    • NSF-style Letters of support from any facilities/partner organizations providing support during the award period

                  Budget Guidelines

                  Please see the general budget guidelines for the OVPR Research Development Internal Funding awards.

                  Review Criteria

                  Significance

                  • Does the project address an important use-inspired need or opportunity?
                  • Is the project’s intellectual rationale clear and persuasive?
                  • Does the project advance research in quantum technology/quantum-related STEM education in meaningful and significant ways?
                  • Does the project’s conception, definition, organization, and description reflect the highest quality and excellence?

                  Approach/Timeline

                  • To what degree does the proposal outline a clearly articulated and well-reasoned plan of action?
                  • If applicable, were the hypotheses, aims, and/or goals clearly articulated, well-reasoned, and adequately supported?
                  • Are the conceptual / theoretical frameworks and methods adequately developed and clearly articulated?  To what degree are they appropriate to the aims of the project and reflective of intellectual rigor/artistic excellence?
                  • Is the timeline adequate for achieving goals and meeting the project aims? For proposals requesting funding to exceed one year, is the request justified and supported?

                   Innovation/Novelty

                  • Is the project original and innovative? Does the project challenge existing paradigms, methods, approaches, applications, theories, practice and/or barriers to progress in the field(s)?

                  Feasibility and Resources

                  • To what degree is the project, as described in proposal, achievable?  Are there any concerns about feasibility?
                  • Are the resource and time available for this project adequate to ensure success?
                  • Does the environment in which the work will be done contribute to the probability of success?
                  • Does the proposed project benefit from unique features of the environment such as technical assistance/tools, translational expertise, and/or facilities support?

                   Investigators/Collaborators

                  • Are the PI, collaborators, and other personnel well-suited to carry out the project?
                  • Do the investigators have complementary and integrated expertise?
                  • Does the PI (and collaborators for Multi-PI proposals) demonstrate an ongoing/emerging record of accomplishments that have advanced the respective field(s)?

                  Impact and Outcomes

                  • Is the proposed project compelling and if successful, would it make a meaningful disciplinary or interdisciplinary contribution and/or advancement?
                  • Does the project have strong potential for producing valuable societal benefits?
                  • Does the project have high potential for national or international recognition and achievement?
                  • Does the proposal provide a mechanism to assess success and provide an adequate plan for evaluation of outcomes?
                  • Where appropriate, does the project provide a sound dissemination and/or access plan?

                  Budget Evaluation

                  • Is the project budget appropriate and sufficient to carry out the proposed work?
                  • Are the budget requests adequately justified, clearly articulated, and necessary for the scope of work and timeline?
                  • Would you recommend any reduction in the budget?

                  Funding Recommendations:

                  Reviewers will be asked to make funding recommendations based on the merits of each proposal.

                  Post-award considerations and Program Contacts

                  Post-award considerations

                  • Reporting requirements: PIs will need to prepare a brief report, using this Award Report Template to summarize project progress at the end of the award period.
                  • Further reports on project outcomes may be requested in the future to track return on investment.

                  Program Contacts

                  • Administrative contact: Charlotte Nelson, Internal Funding Coordinator. research@uconn.edu;

                  UConn Quantum Startup Awards

                  Advances in quantum science have the potential to have transformative social and economic impact.  New technologies are poised to revolutionize major industries, creating opportunities for new applications that will fuel economic growth.

                  To accelerate the translation of quantum technologies, UConn’s Office of the Vice President for Research is creating a new program to support faculty entrepreneurs interested in creating new startups based on quantum-related innovations – the UConn Quantum Startup Awards

                  This program is offered as a companion program to the Quantum-CT Regional Innovation Engine project. Quantum-CT, led by UConn and Yale University, is an effort to build an innovation ecosystem of researchers, educators, industry, and state/local stakeholders to harness the economic impact of new quantum-enabled technologies through technology development, innovation and entrepreneurship, and advances in STEM education and workforce development.

                   

                  Program Timeline

                  • Program opens 8/15/23.
                  • Submissions to be made through the UConn Quest Portal.
                  • Proposal deadline 10/30/23 at 12 noon.

                  Eligibility and Award Details

                  Eligibility:  The UConn Quantum Startup Awards program is available to UConn / UConn Health faculty or postdoctoral fellows from UConn or UConn Health.

                  • UConn/UConn Health faculty of all ranks are eligible to apply.
                  • The UConn/UConn Health faculty member or postdoc applying for the award must be one of the core startup team members (founder, co-founder, interim CEO, or similar).
                  • Startups must be centered around a quantum and quantum-adjacent technology that has been disclosed to UConn’s Technology Commercialization Services team.

                  Award details:

                  • One-time, non-refundable award of up to $15,000
                  • Eligible costs are limited to a) fees related to the incorporation of the startup; b) fees for an SBIR expert to help write an SBIR/STTR grant; or c) funds for a small project that is critical to the success of the startup.
                  • Incorporation of the startup and disclosure of the technology to TCS are required to receive the award.
                  • Technology Commercialization Services (TCS) will provide other necessary consulting support to faculty during the startup launch and throughout its life cycle.
                  • For the most promising startups, OVPR may consider additional funding to support a technology development project within the startup.

                  Submission Instructions

                  • Submit an invention disclosure to UConn TCS for the technology that will be at the heart of the startup (if one has not already been filed). Startup teams that have not completed the invention disclosure process will not be considered for Startup Formation Support awards.
                  • After submitting an invention disclosure, potential applicants will need to contact TCS (contact information below) to discuss your technology and its commercialization pathway.
                  • Submit a proposal via the Quest Portal (UConn NetID required). Proposals should include:
                    • Applicant information form (available on Quest): PI Name, Home Department, School/College, email, phone, academic rank, primary employer.
                    • Quantum Startup Award application form (available on Quest): project title, invention disclosure information, team members (with roles and affiliations), project abstract, amount requested
                    • Project Narrative (PDF Upload) – no more than 5 pages (1” margins, 11-12pt fonts, single spacing and single side pages), outlining the following:
                      • Description of the innovation/technology and its novelty
                      • Anticipated impact: Identify the industries/sectors that your startup will address and describe
                      • Intellectual Property Status: Describe your IP position, and the competitive IP landscape. List your current patent applications or patents pending as well as any granted patents related to this project. If you currently have no patent applications, please mention plans for future invention disclosures.
                      • Estimate Market Size:
                        • Please describe the total available market this invention addresses (TAM)
                        • Estimate serviceable available market (SAM)
                        • Estimate serviceable obtainable market (SOM)
                      • Team: Describe the core startup team and advisors, along with their roles.
                      • Resources: Describe your current understanding of the resources needed for the startup to succeed.
                      • Funding strategy: Describe the startup’s path to future funding (SBIR/STTR, VC investments, etc).
                      • Business Plan: Describe your plans for developing your technology and your strategy for bringing it to market. Include key technological and business development milestones, along with appropriate timelines.
                        • If you are requesting funds for seed project activities, please also include an overview of your project aims, approach, and significance.
                      • Time commitment: Describe the Faculty/fellow’s current time commitment and workload that demonstrate he/she can engage in the startup.
                    • Budget: Describe and justify the use of Quantum-CT funds in this Internal Budget Funding template
                    • Biosketches / CVs for core team members.

                  For any additional details required to help with the proposal please contact:

                  Vivek Ramakrishnan

                  Director, Venture Development

                  Technology Commercialization Services

                  vivek.ramakrishnan@uconn.edu

                  Review Criteria

                  Market Need—does the innovation/startup address an unmet need and is there evidence that there is a market for the proposed solution?

                  • Does the applicant make a strong case that there is a need/problem that needs to be met?
                  • To what degree will the innovation satisfy the unmet consumer/industry need?
                  • Does the proposal include market data and a compelling estimate as to what share of the market the innovation may realistically capture?

                  Innovation and Novelty—Is the innovation novel and/or does it make a significant improvement over currently-available solutions?

                  • Does the proposal make a convincing argument that the innovation is novel and or makes a significant improvement over currently-available solutions?
                  • Is there existing or the potential for intellectual property protection?
                  • To what degree does the innovation solve the unmet need differently (e.g., better, faster, cheaper) than the current state-of-the art?
                  • If novel, is the innovation a disruptive technology, a platform technology, or an incremental improvement over the current state-of-the art?

                  Commercialization Plan—Is there a realistic path for commercializing the innovation?

                  • Does the proposal present a path to bring the innovation forward to market?
                  • If so, is the startup path the most promising for the innovation?
                  • Does the proposal contain reasonable estimates of the time needed to enter the market?
                  • Does the proposal present plans for future financing of the project, such as SBIR/STTR or industry investment?
                  • For future development, will this technology require regulatory approval?  If so, does the proposal address plans for successfully navigating the process?
                  • Does the applicant point to any obvious potential licenses / commercial partners for this innovation?

                  Program Contacts

                  UConn Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI) Research Initiative

                  *The next cycle will be held in Spring 2025


                  Purpose
                  :

                  The UConn JEDI Research Initiative aims to support innovative research, scholarship, and creative work in topic areas related to justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion (JEDI).  We seek to fund projects that have the potential to make significant contributions to ongoing scholarly/scientific/artistic conversations in these vitally important domains. Projects that aim to improve UConn’s competitiveness for emerging external funding opportunities related to JEDI or that propose novel interdisciplinary collaborations are particularly encouraged. Proposals from all disciplines are invited.

                  Topics that may be of interest under this initiative include:

                  • Contributing factors to the growth/persistence of racism, bias, and/or inequities
                  • The intersection of race, gender, class, sexuality, and/or ability
                  • The impact of systemic racism or implicit bias on civic life
                  • Development of research-based interventions designed to address/mitigate inequities
                  • Novel approaches to raising awareness of or reflection on JEDI-related issues
                  • Other topics consistent with the overall goal of understanding challenges related to justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion and developing innovative solutions

                  Note: As the main purpose of this funding opportunity is to seed innovative research into JEDI-related topics, applications focusing on the implementation of internally focused JEDI trainings, events, speakers, etc. will not be considered under this program.

                  Timeline/Details:

                  • Proposals are due August 15, 2025 by 12:00 noon (deadline has been extended)
                  • Submissions should be made via the UConn Quest Portal.  The portal will open to receive applications by Monday, May 12, 2025.
                  • Review will be conducted by a team of faculty and other scholars with expertise in JEDI-related research topics and methodologies.
                  • Award notices are expected in February 2026.  Award setup will begin immediately after notice, pending the completion of compliance review.
                  • Program timelines for FY27 have not yet been determined.

                  Award Categories:

                  • Level 1 - Faculty/Institutional Development - awards up to $5K
                  • Level 2 - JEDI Scholarly/Creative Expansion - awards up to $20K
                  • Level 3 - JEDI Research Expansion - awards up to $60K

                  Level 1 – Faculty/Institutional Development for JEDI (up to $5K) – Details

                  • Provides funding in support of faculty seeking to position themselves for work on JEDI-related projects in the future.  Level 1 awards can also provide seed funds for certain JEDI-related institutional initiatives.
                  • This level is designed to provide funding in support of:
                    • faculty skill development, particularly in JEDI/DEI theoretical approaches and/or research methodologies for social impact research
                    • networking activities for development of novel interdisciplinary partnerships that will lead to future work on JEDI-related research projects
                    • the purchase or development of survey instruments or datasets for use in JEDI-related research projects
                    • Climate surveys necessary for external funding strategies and/or thoughtful plans of action for institutional change.  Please reach out to the OVPR for more information if you are seeking funding for this kind of project
                  • Awards may be used over 1 year
                  • 3-5 Level 1 awards are expected
                  • Note: the OVPR Scholarship Facilitation Fund (SFF) has been established to support small scale pilot projects, requests for publication support, and other costs related to the initiation and completion of research (see guidelines for details).  Smaller projects that are a strong fit for the SFF should be submitted to that program instead.

                  Level 2 – JEDI Scholarly/Creative Expansion (up to $20K) – Details

                  • Provides funding in support of scholarly and creative projects with strong promise to make substantive contributions to JEDI-related conversations/areas of inquiry
                  • This level is designed to provide funding for the development of scholarly monographs, journal articles, mid-scale pilot projects, community engagement projects, creative works, exhibitions, and performances—provided such works make contributions to JEDI-related discourses
                  • Projects that include novel collaborations across disciplines are encouraged
                  • Awards may be used over 1-2 years
                  • 2-3 Level 2 awards are expected

                  Level 3 – JEDI Research Expansion (up to $60K) – Details

                  • Provides funding in support of research projects designed:
                    • To expand our understanding of factors leading to racism, bias, injustice, and/or inequity
                    • To deepen our knowledge about the impact of racism, bias, injustice, and/or inequality on the health and well-being of individuals, specific groups, and society at large
                    • To develop/test novel interventions designed to ameliorate the harms caused by systemic bias, injustice, and inequality or to advance the values of justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion
                    • To implement research drawing on critical and/or justice-oriented methods and theories
                  • This level is designed to develop and enhance the competitiveness of teams that are seeking external funding for JEDI-related projects.
                  • Projects that transcend disciplinary boundaries, foster unique collaborations, or productively reshape fields of study/practice are strongly encouraged.
                  • Awards may be used over 1-2 years.
                  • 1-2 Level 3 awards are expected.

                  Additional Details and Eligibility

                  JEDI Research awards are available to individuals with a primary, full-time faculty appointment to UConn/UConn Health, within the following parameters:

                  • Eligibility
                    • Applicants (lead PIs) must be tenured/tenure-track, clinical, research, or in-Residence faculty at the rank of Assistant Professor or higher.  Faculty of other ranks or titles, postdocs, staff, and community partners may serve as co-PIs, collaborators, or consultants.
                    • Applicants may be from any department or discipline within the University, so long as the project makes a strong contribution to research topics/critical conversations strongly related to JEDI.
                  • Submission Limits:
                    • Eligible faculty may submit only one proposal for JEDI funding as PI, across all tracks.  There are no limits to how many proposals an individual may participate in as a co-PI or collaborator.
                    • The same project cannot receive funds from JEDI and other OVPR internal award mechanisms (SFF, REP, SCHARP, etc.).
                  • Faculty Salary: Salary support for any faculty PIs/co-PIs/collaborators is not allowable.
                  • Additional approvals: Release of awarded funds will be contingent upon approval/confirmation of appropriate IRB protocols (if applicable).

                  Proposal Guidelines – Level 1

                  Proposals for JEDI Level 1 Awards should contain the following elements and adhere to the structure and guidelines indicated.  All length guidelines assume 1” margins, 11-12pt fonts, single spacing, and single side pages.

                  • Quest Portal forms:
                    • OVPR Faculty Applicant Information Form – brief form gathering information about you, as the PI of the project.  Some information will auto-feed based on your NetID and past submissions in Quest.
                      • Submitting PI Name
                      • Home Department
                      • School/College
                      • Email
                      • Phone
                      • Faculty/Academic Rank
                      • Primary Employer
                      • Question - is your position contingent on grant funding?
                    • JEDI Application form – brief form gathering basic information about the project for the purpose of competition management.
                      • JEDI Level/Category
                      • Special Reviewer Expertise needed
                      • Size of team (besides yourself)
                      • Name/affiliation/project role of team members
                      • Project title
                      • Amount Requested
                      • Resubmission Y/N (has the project previously been submitted for internal or external funding?)
                      • Project Abstract/Lay Summary
                      • Future Funding Targets (not required for level 1)
                      • Results from prior OVPR-funded projects
                  • Cover Page: Title of Project, Applicant information, and a list of collaborators.
                  • Project Narrative: Describe the project and its anticipated outcomes.  Project narratives should address the following and not exceed 1 page for Level 1 Awards. References should be included and do not count against page limits.
                    • Area of need: Succinctly describe the area of need / gap that you wish to address through this project.
                    • Proposed work/plan: Briefly describe the specific activities that you propose undertaking.
                    • Project Rationale: Provide a brief rationale explaining how your proposed activities will address the need/gap that you’ve identified and how the project will enable future JEDI-related scholarly/scientific/creative contributions.
                  • Budget describing and justifying use of JEDI funds.  Please use the OVPR Internal Funding Budget Template.xlsx.
                  • Updated CVs for all key project contributors that include recent work or work that is most relevant to the project proposed.

                  Proposal Guidelines – Level 2

                  Proposals for JEDI Level 2 Awards should contain the following elements and adhere to the structure and guidelines indicated.  All length guidelines assume 1” margins, 11-12pt fonts, single spacing, and single side pages.

                  • Quest Portal forms:
                    • OVPR Faculty Applicant Information Form – brief form gathering information about you, as the PI of the project.  Some information will auto-feed based on your NetID and past submissions in Quest.
                      • Submitting PI name
                      • Home department
                      • School/College
                      • Email
                      • Phone
                      • Faculty/Academic rank
                      • Primary employer
                      • Question - is your position contingent on grant funding?
                    • JEDI Application form – brief form gathering basic information about the project for the purpose of competition management.
                      • JEDI level/category
                      • Special reviewer expertise needed
                      • Size of team (besides yourself)
                      • Name/affiliation/project role of team members
                      • Project title
                      • Amount requested
                      • Resubmission Y/N (has the project previously been submitted for internal or external funding?)
                      • Project abstract/lay summary
                      • Future funding targets (optional for level 2)
                      • Results from prior OVPR-funded projects
                  • Cover Page: Title of Project, Applicant information, and a list of collaborators
                  • Project Narrative: Describe the project and its anticipated outcomes.  Project narratives should address the following and not exceed 2-3 pages for Level 2 Awards. References should be included and do not count against page limits.
                    • Project framing: Provide background on your project's field of study/practice to provide context for the work you are proposing.
                    • Proposed Work: Describe the work you wish to accomplish through this project, scholarly/artistic approaches you may be drawing on, the specific activities you are proposing, and the expected products of the project (e.g. performances, exhibitions, publications, community-based projects, media, public engagements, etc.).
                    • Impact/Outcomes: Explain the contribution your proposed activities will make to advancing JEDI-related goals/discourses, describing expected outcomes, their significance for your area of inquiry and society in general, and also your plans for extending/sustaining the impact of the work beyond the funding period (could include seeking follow-up external funding or plans for activities that build on the work proposed in the current project).
                    • Access and Resources: If the project requires special technical expertise or resources, describe how this need will be addressed.  If the project requires access to archives/collections/resources at another institution, describe the arrangements that have been made to gain access to them.
                  • Budget describing and justifying use of JEDI funds.  Please use the OVPR Internal Funding Budget Template.xlsx.
                  • Updated CVs for all key project contributors that includes recent work or work that is most relevant to the project proposed.

                  Proposal Guidelines – Level 3

                  Proposals for JEDI – Level 3 funding should contain the following elements and adhere to the structure and guidelines indicated.  All length guidelines assume 1” margins, 11-12pt fonts, single spacing, and single side pages.

                  • Quest Portal forms:
                    • OVPR Faculty Applicant Information Form – brief form gathering information about you, as the PI of the project.  Some information will auto-feed based on your NetID and past submissions in Quest.
                      • Submitting PI Name
                      • Home Department
                      • School/College
                      • Email
                      • Phone
                      • Faculty/Academic Rank
                      • Primary Employer
                      • Question - is your position contingent on grant funding?
                    • JEDI Application form – brief form gathering basic information about the project for the purpose of competition management.
                      • JEDI Level/Category
                      • Special Reviewer Expertise needed
                      • Size of team (besides yourself)
                      • Name/affiliation/project role of team members
                      • Project title
                      • Amount Requested
                      • Resubmission Y/N (has the project previously been submitted for internal or external funding?)
                      • Project Abstract/Lay Summary
                      • Future Funding Targets (required for level 3)
                      • Results from prior OVPR-funded projects
                  • Cover Page: Title of Project, Applicant information, and a list of collaborators
                  • Project Narrative: Describe the project and its anticipated outcomes.  Project narratives should address the following and not exceed 5 pages for Level 3 Awards. References should be included and do not count against page limits.
                    • Project framing: Provide background on conversation/area of inquiry with which your project will engage to provide context for the work you are proposing.  Be sure to clearly identify and describe the problem/issue/gap in knowledge/obstacle to be overcome that your project will address.
                    • Proposed work: Describe the work you wish to accomplish with this project. Explain the scholarly/scientific approach and any theoretical or methodological framework you are applying, the specific activities that you propose undertaking to advance your project, and the anticipated outputs or products of that work.  Proposals should specifically address the ways in which the project is innovative/novel/transformative compared to existing work in your area of inquiry.
                    • Impact and outcomes: Explain how your proposed activities will address the JEDI-related problem/issue/gap/obstacle you’ve identified, describing expected outcomes, their significance for your area of inquiry and society in general, and also how the work done in this project will prepare your team to be competitive for the external funding opportunities you are targeting.
                    • Expertise/Skills, Access, and Resources: If the project requires special technical expertise, describe how this need will be addressed.  If the project requires access to particular resources or study populations, describe the arrangements that have been made to gain access to them.  If your project includes collaboration, describe how the skills and expertise of each team member contributes to the success of the project and explain how the collaboration is innovative/novel compared to what is common within your discipline.
                  • Budget describing and justifying use of JEDI funds.  Please use the OVPR Internal Funding Budget Template.xlsx
                  • Updated CVs for all key project contributors that includes recent work or work that is most relevant to the project proposed.

                  Budget Guidelines

                  Please see the general budget guidelines for the OVPR Research Development Internal Funding awards.

                  • Allowable costs include: graduate research assistant salary (AY and Summer), Storrs/Regional Campus faculty summer salary ($3K limit, 9/10-month faculty only), postdoc or other research assistant salary, undergraduate researcher salary, Storrs/Regional Campus faculty course buyouts (approval letter from department head required), fringe costs, equipment purchases, travel to conduct research or meet with collaborators, materials and supplies, participant costs, contractual services.
                    • Note: Course buyout funding will be limited to one per PI/co-PI per award and will be limited to the minimum adjunct rate for the course being bought-out (not a percentage of the PI’s salary).  PIs requesting buyouts must explain why release time is vital for the project.
                  • Unallowable costs include: clerical or administrative personnel salaries, including personnel whose primary purpose is to explore funding sources and/or prepare funding applications; faculty academic year salary; institutional memberships in professional organizations; travel to professional meetings to present the results of the research; travel to explore extramural funding opportunities; costs associated with the publication of results of the research, including page charges, purchase of reprints, or journal costs.  Generally speaking, basic office equipment such as computers/laptops/tablets are not supported on OVPR awards unless the equipment meets a specialized need within the project which cannot be met through equipment from other sources.

                   

                  Review Criteria for Level 2 and Level 3 Awards

                  Significance/Importance

                  The "significance" criterion evaluates the degree to which the project as described addresses an scholarly/artistic/scientific challenge that is well defined, well contextualized, and of great importance/consequence for the field.  Reviewers will consider:

                  • The degree to which the proposal clearly defines the issue/gap/challenge the project will address
                  • The degree to which the proposal clearly contextualizes/situates the area of focus within the large field of study or practice
                  • The degree to which the area of focus is of high importance for JEDI-related discourses
                  • The degree to which success within the area of focus can advance JEDI-related goals/discourses and improve competitiveness for JEDI-related external funding (if applicable)

                  Approach/Timeline

                  The "approach/timeline" criterion evaluates clarity, coherence, and theoretical/methodological soundness of the specific activities the applicant proposes.  Reviewers will consider:

                  • The degree to which the proposal describes the work to be accomplished in a clear and sufficiently detailed manner
                  • The degree to which the activities are described as part of a coherent plan of action that is well reasoned and sound
                  • The degree to which any theoretical or methodological frameworks employed in the work are clearly articulated, well conceptualized, appropriate to the context, and appropriately applied
                  • The degree to which the plan of work includes a well developed and reasonable timeline for completion

                  Innovation/Novelty

                  The "innovation/novelty" criterion evaluates whether the project stands out as particularly groundbreaking or innovative in comparison to other work in this domain.  Reviewers will consider:

                  • The degree to which the project proposes creative/fresh approaches to JEDI-related challenges
                  • The degree to which the proposed activities/methodologies are groundbreaking rather than incremental improvements on/expansions of established approaches

                  Feasibility and Resources

                  The "feasibility" criterion evaluates whether the project is achievable as described, given available resources and expertise.  Reviewers will consider:

                  • To what degree is the project, as described in proposal, achievable?  Are there any concerns about feasibility?  If so, does the proposal anticipate possible problems and articulate alternative approaches?
                  • If specialized skills or special access are required for completion of the project, to what degree does the proposal establish their availability?

                  Team

                  The "team" criterion evaluates the expertise of those participating in the project, their fitness for the work proposed, and the strength/importance/innovation of any collaborative efforts proposed.  Reviewers will consider:

                  • The degree to which the members of the team well prepared and well suited to carry out the project
                  • The degree to which the members of the team have complementary expertise
                  • If the project includes a novel collaboration, compared to what is common in their discipline(s), to what degree does this unusual collaboration add something meaningful to the project?

                  Project Evaluation Guidelines

                  After JEDI awards are made, the OVPR would like to check in with awardees periodically to evaluate project progress and to learn about the impact of the work that has been done.

                  In the short term, the OVPR will follow up with awardees at the end of each year during the award period.  If the award was given for multiple years, we will ask for a brief update on how your project is progressing and for an updated budget for the following year.  If significant budget changes are needed at any point within an award period (i.e., because of unanticipated delays, new costs, significant shifts of funding between categories), awardees may contact research@uconn.edu to work out a revised budget.

                  Post-award considerations

                  • Reporting requirements: PIs will need to prepare a brief report, using this Award Report Template to summarize project progress at the end of the award period.
                  • Further reports on project outcomes may be requested in the future to track return on investment.

                  Program Contacts

                  • Administrative contact: Matt Mroz, PhD, OVPR Internal Funding Coordinator. research@uconn.edu; 860.486.6378

                   

                  Clinical Research and Innovation Seed Program (CRISP)

                  Purpose

                  UConn’s Clinical Research and Innovation Seed Program (CRISP) is a targeted seed funding program for FY24 created to: 1) help unlock the research creativity of UConn/UConn Health faculty who serve in clinical roles and 2) to support faculty who are doing human subjects research and working with clinical populations.

                  CRISP aims to support faculty in clinical roles who have compelling research ideas they would like to pursue.  Clinical faculty at UConn and UConn Health are world-class practitioners in their areas of expertise, but due to their clinical and teaching responsibilities, they often do not have the resources or opportunity to develop research programs that can lead to external funding.  CRISP is designed to provide the seed funding or development resources needed for clinical faculty to get exciting research projects started.

                  Faculty who work with human subjects and clinical populations know that this work can be challenging and sometimes cost-prohibitive, particularly for those who are in the early stages of projects or who are seeking pilot data to support large-scale external submissions.  CRISP also aims to provide the support needed to launch significant human subjects/clinical research projects and to move them towards external funding success.

                  While not a requirement of all proposals, the CRISP program supports collaboration across disciplines and between UConn and UConn Health faculty.  Given external funders’ growing interest in supporting interdisciplinary and convergent research, the demonstrated excellence of our faculty, and the complementary expertise available across disciplines, proposals that include novel interdisciplinary and cross-campus partnerships are particularly encouraged.

                  Program Timeline

                  • Program opens 3/01/24. Applications can be submitted through the UConn Quest Portal
                  • Proposal deadline Monday, 5/2/24 (12 noon)
                  • Awards expected in January 2025
                  • Program timeline for FY25 has not yet been determined

                  The CRISP program offers awards in three different tracks, one focused on clinical faculty-initiated research, and two open to both clinical and non-clinical faculty that is focused on human subjects and clinical research.

                  Track 1 (Clinical Faculty-Initiated Research) Details and Eligibility – $10K

                  • Awards available: up to 10 awards of up to $10K are anticipated to support projects initiated by clinical faculty members
                  • Eligibility: limited to full-time UConn/UConn Health faculty serving in clinical roles.  Open to those at any campus with Assistant/Associate/Full Professor titles (including titles such as Clinical Assistant Professor), within the following constraints:
                    • UConn Health – open to faculty who spend at least 60% of their time on clinical or teaching responsibilities.
                    • UConn (Storrs and Regional Campuses) – open to faculty who have Assist/Assoc/Full Clinical Professor titles or faculty with other titles who have clinical credentials and who spend at least 60% of their time on clinical or teaching responsibilities.
                    • Investigators from JAX or CCMC are eligible to participate providing they have affiliate status with either UConn Health or UConn.
                  • Award Period: Awards will be made for activities that can be completed during a one-plus year award period (anticipated 9/1/2024-10/31/2025).
                  • Anticipated outcomes: Track 1 will fund activities that support/enable clinical faculty to engage in their own research projects and to prepare them for seeking NIH (K- or R-series) awards and/or external funding from foundation, industry and other sponsors
                  • Sample activities: Track 1 funds could be used for:
                    • Project-related materials and supplies
                    • Student Research Assistant salary (Graduate or Undergraduate. If you’d like to promote a student research position to undergraduates, please take advantage of services offered by UConn’s Office of Undergraduate Research.)
                    • Participant incentive costs
                    • Facility / instrumentation use costs
                    • Training programs designed to enhance research-related skillsets
                    • Programs to facilitate collaboration or mentorship
                    • Please see budget guidelines for further detail about what is and is not allowable
                  • Faculty Salary: Salary support for any faculty PIs/co-PIs/collaborators is not allowable.
                  • Submission limits: Eligible faculty may submit only one proposal to CRISP as PI, across all tracks. There are no limits to how many proposals an individual may participate in as a co-PI or collaborator.
                  • Additional approvals: Release of awarded funds will be contingent upon approval/confirmation of appropriate IRB protocols.

                  Track 2 (Human Subjects and Clinical Populations Research) – $30K-$60K

                  • Awards available: 6-8 awards between $30K and $60K are anticipated to support pilot/exploratory human subjects and clinical research.
                  • Project focus: Projects in Track 2 should be primarily focused on work with human subjects that has clinical focus (e.g., clinical populations, clinical phenomena, clinical training, clinical trials, etc.).
                  • Anticipated outcomes: Awards at this level are intended to seed early career investigators, established investigators looking to change research directions or re-establish research programs, feasibility studies, or to explore novel collaborations among established investigators.
                  • Eligibility: PIs must be full-time UConn/UConn Health faculty. Open to those at any campus with Assistant/Associate/Full Professor titles (including titles such as Clinical Assistant Professor).
                    • Investigators from JAX or CCMC are eligible to participate providing they have affiliate status with either UConn Health or UConn.
                  • Award Period: Awards will be made for activities that can be completed during a one-plus year award period (anticipated 9/1/2024-10/31/2025)
                  • Team Composition: Projects that include cross-campus and clinical faculty involvement are especially encouraged, but not required.
                  • Faculty Salary: Salary support for any faculty PIs/co-PIs/collaborators is not allowable.
                  • Submission limits: Eligible faculty may submit only one proposal to CRISP as PI, across all tracks. There are no limits to how many proposals an individual may participate in as a co-PI or collaborator.
                  • Additional approvals: Track 2 finalists may be asked for additional information about human subjects research plans before awards are finalized. Release of awarded funds will be contingent upon approval/confirmation of appropriate IRB protocols.

                  Track 3 (Human Subjects and Clinical Populations Research) – $60K-$100K

                  • Awards Available: 1-4 awards between $60K-$100K each are anticipated to support larger-scale human subjects and clinical research projects.
                  • Project focus: Projects in Track 3 should be primarily focused on significant work with human subjects research with clinical populations.
                  • Anticipated outcomes: Projects should target specific external follow-up funding, from the NIH (R21, R01, etc), foundations, industry, or other sponsors. Awards at this level are intended to catalyze activities that are larger/more ambitious than what is currently being done by a particular PI/Team.
                  • Eligibility: PIs must be full-time UConn/UConn Health faculty. Open to those at any campus with Assistant/Associate/Full Professor titles (including titles such as Clinical Assistant Professor).
                    • Investigators from JAX or CCMC are eligible to participate providing they have affiliate status with either UConn Health or UConn.  For Track 3, teams lead by JAX or CCMC investigators must include a collaborator from UConn or UConn Health.
                  • Award Period: Awards will be made for activities that can be completed during a one-plus year award period (anticipated 9/1/2024-10/31/2025).
                  • Team Composition: Projects that include cross-campus and clinical faculty involvement are especially encouraged, but not required.
                  • Faculty Salary: Salary support for any faculty PIs/co-PIs/collaborators is not allowable.
                  • Submission limits: Eligible faculty may submit only one proposal to CRISP as PI, across all tracks. There are no limits to how many proposals an individual may participate in as a co-PI or collaborator.
                  • Additional approvals: Track 3 finalists may be asked for additional information about human subjects research plans before awards are finalized. Release of awarded funds will be contingent upon approval/confirmation of appropriate IRB protocols.

                  Proposal Guidelines

                  Proposals for CRISP Awards should contain the following elements and follow the structure and guidelines indicated.  All length guidelines assume 1” margins, 11-12pt fonts, single spacing and single-side pages.

                  • Cover Page: Title of Project, Principal investigator(s) with contact information, List of other team members (including department, title, area of expertise), Specific follow-on funding mechanism targeted (if applicable).
                  • Project Description: Proposals should address the following areas (adapted from general NIH Research Plan guidelines). Track 1 proposals should be 2-3 pages in length; Track 2 and 3 proposals should be no more than 5 pages.  Page totals include the specific aims page but do not include references, which do not count against the page limits.
                    • Specific Aims (Track 1, half page max; Tracks 2 and 3, 1-Page max): Provide a summary of the goals of the project, the need being addressed, expected outcomes, and anticipated impact of the work.  Include a brief description of the specific objectives of the project.
                      • For Track 1, the project can either be focused on research aims or on training/career development aims in support of research goals.
                      • For Tracks 2 and 3, the aims must be focused on human subjects research.
                    • Significance: Describe the research problem being addressed, the rationale behind the proposed work, how the proposed work relates to existing work in the field, and the significance of the work for the field.
                      • Track 1: If training/career development activities are being proposed, this section can be used to address the applicant’s scientific background and how the proposed activities advance the applicant’s career goals.
                      • Track 3: Include discussion of how the work you are proposing will position you/your team to be competitive for your targeted external funding mechanism.
                    • Innovation: Describe and justify the novelty (of approach, population, research question/problem, etc.) of the work proposed
                      • Track 1: If training/career development activities are being proposed, this section may be omitted.
                    • Approach: Describe the research strategy and methodology to be used to accomplish the specific aims of the project, including project timelines and key milestones.
                      • Track 1: If training/career development activities are being proposed, use this section to provide details about the specific activities proposed
                      • Tracks 2 and 3: applicants should ensure that sufficient information is provided about proposed human subjects studies so that plans and strategies can be evaluated.  Additional information may be requested of finalists before awards are finalized.
                    • Environment: Describe the facilities and other resources available that are necessary for the completion of the project. If there are any commitments needed to access spaces or resources, letters of support are needed to demonstrate that appropriate approvals have been obtained.
                  • Budget describing and justifying use of CRISP funds. Please use the OVPR Internal Funding Budget Template
                  • Biosketches / CVs for all PIs and Co-PIs: Please include an updated biosketch consistent with NIH format.
                  • NIH-style letters of support from facilities providing specific support during the CRISP award period.  Given that these are internal awards, letters of support can be quite brief, and serve only to demonstrate that PIs have made any necessary arrangements needed to secure access to facilities and other resources.  If no specific arrangements need to be made to gain access to a resource, no letter of support is needed.

                  Budget Guidelines

                  Please see the general budget guidelines for the OVPR Research Development Internal Funding awards.

                  Review Criteria

                  • Significance:
                    • Does the project address an important problem or a critical barrier to progress in the field?
                    • Is there a strong scientific premise for the project?
                    • If the aims of the project are achieved, how will scientific knowledge, technical capability, and/or clinical practice be improved?
                    • How will successful completion of the aims change the concepts, methods, technologies, treatments, services, or preventative interventions that drive this field?
                  • Investigators:
                    • Are the PIs, collaborators, and other researchers well suited to the project?
                    • If the project is collaborative or multi-PI, do the investigators have complementary and integrated expertise?
                  • Innovation:
                    • Does the application challenge and seek to shift current research or clinical practice paradigms by utilizing novel theoretical concepts, approaches or methodologies?
                    • Are the concepts, approaches or methodologies, instrumentation, or interventions novel to one field of research or novel in a broad sense?
                    • Is a refinement, improvement, or new application of theoretical concepts, approaches or methodologies, instrumentation, or interventions proposed?
                  • Approach:
                    • Are the overall strategy, methodology, and analyses well-reasoned and appropriate to accomplish the specific aims of the project? Have the investigators presented strategies to ensure a robust and unbiased approach, as appropriate for the work proposed?
                    • Are potential problems, alternative strategies, and benchmarks for success presented?
                    • If the project is in the early stages of development, will the strategy establish feasibility and will particularly risky aspects be managed?
                    • If the project involves human subjects and/or clinical research, are those plans justified in terms of the scientific goals and research strategy proposed?  Are there appropriate plans to protect human subjects from research risks?
                  • Environment:
                    • Will the scientific environment in which the work will be done contribute to the probability of success?
                    • Are the institutional support, equipment and other physical resources available to the investigators adequate for the project proposed?
                    • Will the project benefit from unique features of the scientific environment, subject populations, or collaborative arrangements?
                  • Budget – Are funds to be used efficiently and effectively to achieve project goals?

                  Post-award Considerations and Reporting

                  • Post-award considerations
                    • Reporting requirements: PIs will need to prepare a brief report, using this Award Report Template to summarize project progress at the end of the award period.
                    • Further reports on project outcomes may be requested in the future to track return on investment.

                  Program Contacts

                  • Administrative contact: Charlotte Nelson, OVPR Internal Funding Coordinator. research@uconn.edu

                   

                  New England University Collaboration on Renewable and Sustainable Energy (NEUCORSE)

                  Purpose

                  UConn’s NEUCORSE initiative is designed to catalyze collaboration among universities in New England to address our nation’s urgent need for renewable and sustainable energy.  Building on UConn’s existing strengths in clean energy engineering, this program seeks to support the development of cross-institutional teams with the expertise and capacity to successfully tackle the most challenging scientific and technical problems in this area.  NEUCORSE awards should be thought of as planning grants that will provide seed funding and support team development activities to prepare teams for larger-scale activities in the future.   We welcome proposals focusing on any topic that is relevant to the larger goal of developing renewable and sustainable energy solutions and that can be best addressed through sustained, interdisciplinary efforts within New England.  It is expected that proposed teams be diverse, including investigators from underrepresented groups and a mixture of early-career and more senior investigators.  It is also expected that the planning activities proposed include activities that prepare for future work that will have significant broader impacts, including workforce development.

                   

                  Program Timeline

                  • Program opens 9/27/21.
                  • Submissions to be made through the UConn Quest Portal.  Follow the link to submit an NOI.  For each subsequent stage (LOI, full proposal), you can log in to Quest and "continue" your application to access new tasks.
                  • Notification of Intent to Submit (NOI) due 11/8/21. The NOI will give the OVPR a sense of how many teams are interested.  If a sizable number of NOIs are received, the OVPR may request a brief pre-proposal as part of an initial screening process.
                  • Pre-proposal deadline 11/15/21, if required. Responses will be given by 10/22/21.
                  • Full proposal deadline 12/13/21, by invitation only. Invitations will be provided either after the NOI stage or the pre-proposal stage.
                  • Program is not being offered in FY23, but it is expected to run again in Fall 2023  (FY24)

                   

                  Program/Award Details:

                  • 3-4 awards of $75K-$100K will be made.  One year award periods are expected (generally 1/1/22-12/31/22), though alternate timelines can be proposed.
                  • Teams must, at minimum, consist of a UConn/UConn Health PI and an academic partner from a New England institution.  Other academic or industry partners are also welcome.
                  • It is the expectation that this funding mechanism will help develop bridges between institutions that have active groups working in areas of interest and to build on existing collaborations.  Applications from teams that do not have some level of previous collaboration are encouraged to consider other OVPR Internal Funding Programs.
                  • Funds can be used to support research activities at UConn/UConn Health and team development activities for the full team.  Salary for external partner faculty and funding for research activities at other institutions must be supported by those institutions.
                  • Review of full proposals will be carried out by a team of experts in the area of renewable and sustainable energy.
                  • NEUCORSE-funded teams should be preparing to submit to significant external funding targets.  Some of the funding opportunities of greatest interest are the NSF ERC, the DOE EFRC, and potential opportunities for regional collaboration that may come as part of the reconfiguration of the NSF.  Other large-scale funding targets in this area can also be considered.  Applicants are expected to address their external funding strategy as part of their applications.

                  Eligibility

                  The NEUCORSE Program is available to UConn / UConn Health faculty members, within the following parameters:

                  • UConn Primary Appointment: PIs must be full-time faculty whose primary appointment is at UConn/UConn Health. Investigators with primary appointments to CCMC, Jackson Labs, TIP companies, or other institutions are not eligible to lead projects, but they may be named as Co-PIs, collaborators, or consultants on an eligible PI’s project.  Proposals that include external Co-PIs should be careful to describe how responsibility for the project will be divided between institutions, and they must describe how costs related to the participation of external partners will be covered.
                  • Effort and Salary: Although no minimum effort level is required for NEUCORSE projects, a UConn/UConn Health PI/Co-PI must have departmental research time available during the award period or address in the application how they will handle the time commitment required by the project. PIs/Co-PIs must each make significant and distinct intellectual contributions to the design and direction of the project. Generally speaking, awards are only available to UConn/UConn Health tenure-track and clinical faculty and in-Residence faculty at the Storrs/Regional campuses. UCH in-residence faculty and research faculty are not eligible to apply as PI but can be named as Co-PIs, collaborators, or consultants on an eligible PI’s project.
                  • Application Limits: Eligible faculty may submit multiple proposals, so long as each are scientifically distinct. Investigators may also serve as collaborator on multiple projects.

                  Proposal Guidelines

                  Proposals for NEUCORSE Awards should contain the following elements and follow the structure and guidelines indicated (adapted from NSF Planning Grant proposals for programs like the ERC).  All length guidelines assume 1” margins, 11-12pt fonts, single spacing and single side pages.

                  • Cover Page: Title of Project, Principal investigator(s) with contact information, List of other team members (including institution, department, area of expertise), Specific funding mechanism targeted, Target submission date
                  • Project Description: Proposals should address the following areas and should not exceed 5 pages in length:
                    • Targeted future activities and rationale for collaboration: Describe the core research questions and approaches the team is being formed to explore, the significance of that work, and why sustained interdisciplinary efforts like those you are planning are necessary for having the impact you anticipate.
                    • Team Rationale: Describe the approach you are taking to assemble a team prepared to be successful in the work you’ve described above.
                    • NEUCORSE Grant Activities and significance: Describe the research and team development activities to be supported with NEUCORSE funds and how these activities build on and expand any existing collaborations.  Specifically highlight the new activities the NEUCORSE grant would enable.
                    • Anticipated Impacts: How will the activities you propose advance the development process and prepare your team to successfully meet your scientific and broader impact goals and to be competitive for significant external funding in this area.
                  • Budget describing and justifying use of NEUCORSE funds.  You can use this budget template.
                  • Biosketches / CVs for all PIs and Co-PIs: Please include an updated biosketch consistent with NSF format.
                  • NSF-style Letters of support from any facilities providing support during the NEUCORSE award period

                  Budget Guidelines

                  Below are general guidelines regarding allowable/unallowable costs that are consistent with other OVPR internal funding opportunities.  Given the unique nature of the NEUCORSE mechanism, we understand that these guidelines may not include all budget items that are necessary to enhance competitiveness for your work.  If you have a budget need that does not fit within these guidelines, you may include it, but we ask that you provide strong justification in support of the request.  You can use this budget template.

                  • Allowable costs include: graduate research assistant salary, Postdoc or other Research Assistant salary, Undergraduate Researcher salary, Course buyouts (approval letter from Department Head required), Fringe costs, equipment purchases, travel to conduct research or meet with collaborators (travel approval may be required), materials and supplies, participant support costs, animal/animal care costs, contractual services
                  • Unallowable costs include: subawards to partner institutions, faculty member salaries, clerical or administrative personnel salaries, including personnel whose primary purpose is to explore funding sources and/or prepare grant applications; service/maintenance contracts on equipment; laboratory renovations, or other infrastructure renovations; institutional memberships in professional organizations; travel to professional meetings to present the results of the research; travel to explore extramural funding opportunities; costs associated with the publication of results of the research, including page charges, purchase of reprints, or journal costs.

                  Review Criteria

                  • Targeted Future Activities
                    • Significance/Merit—Does the team being formed aim to address significant scientific questions / technical problems in the area of renewable and sustainable energy?  Is the proposed approach promising and methodologically sound?  Does this work require sustained, interdisciplinary efforts that draws on the resources of the New England region?
                    • Innovation/Novelty – Does this project approach the problem in a new/innovative way?
                    • Environment/Resources – Are available resources/facilities sufficient to successfully complete the work? Are external partners adequately supported by their institutions?
                    • PI/Team qualifications – Who will be working on this project, and how are they uniquely suited to accomplish this work?  Does the team have the required expertise to be successful?  Does the team demonstrate interdisciplinary and diversity?
                  • Proposed NEUCORSE Activities
                    • Significance/Merit—are the proposed research and development activities well-designed/conceptualized?  Do they build on existing collaborations and extend them in ways that expand the capacity of the team?
                    • Feasibility of Approach – are the proposed research and development plans feasible and likely to succeed?
                    • Outcome – will the activities proposed adequately prepare the team to achieve their scientific and broader impact goals and to be competitive for significant external funding in this area?
                    • Assessment – Does the project have a reasonable plan for measuring and determining success?
                    • Budget – Are funds to be used efficiently and effectively to achieve project goals?

                  Post-Award Considerations

                  • Reporting requirements: PIs will need to prepare a brief report summarizing project progress at the end of the award period.
                  • Further reports on project outcomes may be requested in the future to track return on investment.

                  Program Contacts

                  • Administrative contact: Matt Mroz, PhD, OVPR Internal Funding Coordinator. research@uconn.edu; 860.486.6378

                   

                  • Program Director: Mark Aindow, PhD, Executive Director for Innovation, External Engagement, and Industry Relations. m.aindow@uconn.edu; 860.486.1339