APPLY NOW - Rhode Island Neuroscience New Frontiers Awards

Rhode Island Neuroscience New Frontiers Awards

APPLICATION DEADLINE: September 15, 2017

The Rhode Island Neuroscience Leadership Committee (RINLC), in partnership with the Brown Institute for Brain Science, the Norman Prince Neurosciences Institute, and the George and Anne Ryan Institute for Neuroscience at the University of Rhode Island, announce a call for proposals for a special round of New Frontiers Awards. These awards provide up to $40,000 each to support brain science projects involving scientists from any of the institutions represented on the RINLC: Brown University, University of Rhode Island, Lifespan Hospitals, Care New England Hospitals, and the Providence VA Medical Center.

The committed funds will be divided equally to support 1) projects in any area of neuroscience and brain science and 2) projects focused on any aspect of neurodegeneration and/or neurodegenerative diseases.  Preference will be given to early-stage investigators (pre-tenure, or up to seven years after initial faculty appointment at time of application). In addition, applications that involve partnerships between more than one of the participating institutions are particularly encouraged. However, the primary consideration will be supporting the highest quality science with potential for great impact and future follow-on grant support.

Eligibility –The Rhode Island Neuroscience New Frontiers Awards are open to faculty researchers with appointments at any one of the institutions participating in the RINLC.

  • Applications from teams that span multiple institutions are particularly encouraged. Applications may include up to three co-PIs. Note that each PIs department or home institution must also contribute $5000 toward the award (see “Award terms” below).
  • Individuals cannot serve as co-PIs on more than one application for this submission deadline.
  • PIs/co-PIs with active New Frontiers Awards through previous rounds of the BIBS-NPNI New Frontiers awards are not eligible to apply for a second award.

Award terms – The New Frontiers program will provide up to $30,000 for each one-year award. The home department or institution of each co-PI must contribute $5,000.  Funds from other sources awarded to PIs/coPIs (including but not limited to grants and startup) cannot be used as the department/institution contribution. The total budget requested for each award cannot exceed $40,000 ($45,000 if there are three co-PIs).

Allowable expenditures – New Frontiers Awards may be used for expenditures required to complete the proposed project.  Up to $10,000 may be used for specialized equipment (not general lab equipment) essential for the project’s success.  Other allowable expenses include:

  • Salaries for trainees and/or research support personnel
  • Supplies
  • Reagents
  • Human subjects recruitment costs
  • Advertising for studies requiring subject/patient recruitment
  • Core facility user fees

Funds cannot be used for:

  • Faculty salaries
  • Travel to scientific meetings
  • Publication costs
  • Invited speakers
  • Entertainment
  • Indirect costs

Application process – Application must include the following in a single PDF document:

  • Cover letter – Include a letter signed by the PI/co-PIs. The letter must list the PI/co-PIs and affiliations. Include the title and description of the proposed project. Indicate the total funding request and describe plans to apply for follow-on funding from external sources, including the funding agencies and programs being targeted along with expected submission dates.
  • Biographical sketches of the PI/co-PIs - NIH or NSF style.
  • Research proposal (3 pages, including tables and figures)

The proposal must describe:

  • Background and rationale for the project
  • Significance and impact of the project (including key innovations)
  • Specific aim(s) of the project
  • Experimental approach, including a brief timeline of the research plan for the year. The approach should also include a brief description of the strategy for data analysis.
  • Multi-PI coordination plan (0.5 page) – For multi-PI applications, please describe the contributions made by each co-PI, and describe which aspects of the project will be conducted at each institution.
  • Budget – Indicate the total budget requested, and list how the expenditures will be allocated into eligible categories. Provide justification for personnel, equipment and other categories of expenditures that exceed $10,000.
  • Other support – Applicants who have received external or institutional funding (either current or completed) to support this or a closely related project must provide a explanation of how New Frontiers support would augment but not overlap existing funding.
  • Letters of Commitment – Include a letter from the chair, or other appropriate administrator, from the home department or institution of the PI, or each co-PI for multi-PI applications, verifying that at least $5,000 will be committed to the project for each co-PI, if the project is awarded funding.
  • Documentation of applicable IACUC or IRB approval is not required at time of application, but it will be required before activation of an award.

Application deadline – The application deadline is September 15, 2017 at 12:00 EDT.  Applications should be submitted electronically as a single file in .pdf format (all parts of the application should be in one file) via Dropbox.

Evaluation Criteria – Responsive applications will be evaluated based on:

  • Innovation and impact of the project;
  • Quality and suitability of the approach
  • Rigor of the project design including analysis methods
  • Appropriateness of the project scope for the funding level and time period;
  • For multi-PI projects, the added value provided by the collaboration between the co-PIs, as well as evidence of essential contribution from each co-PI;
  • The likelihood that the project will be competitive for extramural funding.

Review Process – A review committee of faculty researchers will be appointed by BIBS, the URI Ryan Institute and NPNI, and approved by the RINLC.  This committee will rate the proposals based on the evaluation criteria and make funding recommendations.  The RINLC will provide final approval of funded projects.

If you have questions about this program or the application process, please contact John Davenport (