Office of the Vice Provost for Research

University Research Foundation

Restructured URF. Application Deadline: Friday, March 25, 2016, 5:00PM

The Office of the Vice Provost for Research is pleased to announce new funding opportunities as part of a restructured University Research Foundation (URF). The goal of the new programs is to optimize resources for Penn faculty to create new knowledge.

The reconfigured URF will offer the following grant opportunities: Research Grants, Conference Support, Impact Seminar Grants, and Research Opportunity Development Grants. There will be two solicitations for these grant applications each year with the same deadlines. See the Frequently Asked Questions for more general information.

+ Research Grants (Formerly URF) - Research Grants (Formerly URF)
The URF Research Grants will continue, as in the past, with awards up to $50K.

The University Research Foundation offers limited support on a competitive basis for investigator research projects and scholarly conferences and is offered in the Fall and Spring semesters. Proposals will be evaluated by faculty review panels.

The URF provides up to $50,000 in project support to junior faculty undertaking pilot projects to launch their investigative careers and established faculty developing preliminary data on novel or pioneering ideas to support extramural applications. The URF in particular focuses on disciplines where extramural support is difficult to obtain and where significant research can be facilitated with internal funding. In addition, special attention will be paid to project proposals that include mentorship of Penn undergraduates.

Budget: Applications up to $50,000 will be considered. Salary support for faculty is not allowable. Travel expenses are not allowable for applications being reviewed by the biomedical committee. Graduate tuition is not an allowable expense.

Grant Term, 1 year only: Unexpended funds must be returned. A no cost extension must be approved by the Vice Provost for Research. Requests for a no cost extension should be made prior to the expiration of an award. No cost extensions will only be granted for extenuating circumstances. Extensions will not be made for longer than 6 months. A progress-to-date report including a revised budget will be required.

Renewals: Applications for renewal of a previously funded project may be submitted but receive low priority.

Resubmissions: Applications not previously funded must be revised, changes should be clearly indicated.

The extension form is available for download on the right.
+ Conference Support Grants (Formerly URF) - Conference Support Grants (Formerly URF)
The conference support program is designed for scholarly meetings that will be convened on Penn's campus. The meetings highlight Penn faculty and brings distinguished scholars to Penn's campus, with a particular focus on the University's strength in integrating knowledge.

The conference support program provides enrichment opportunities to interested faculty, students, and staff, most frequently in the format of a 1-2 day colloquium. The intent is to support meetings that are designed to enhance existing research and scholarly programs, particularly in disciplines where external funding is difficult to obtain. Proposals should be focused on a topic of research that draws on faculty expertise across disciplines

Budget: Applications can request up to $3K. Funds are to be used for speakers, travel and accommodations. Funds are not to be used for meals and entertainment.

Grant Term, 1 year only: Unexpended funds must be returned. A no cost extension must be approved by the Vice Provost for Research. Requests for a no cost extension should be made prior to the expiration of an award. No cost extensions will only be granted for extenuating circumstances. Extensions will not be made for longer than 6 months.

+ Impact Seminar Grants - Impact Seminar Grants
Impact Seminar Grants provide support for a cross-School, cross-disciplinary event to be held on Penn’s campus within a year of the award. Proposals should be focused on a topic of research that draws on faculty expertise across disciplines.

The large scale event – which can be a symposium, forum, or conference – should occur over one to two days and be open to the entire University community and should garner broad interest beyond the Penn community. It should highlight the scholarship of Penn faculty and bring distinguished scholars to Penn’s campus, with a particular focus on the University’s distinguishing strength in integrating knowledge. Proposals should be focused on a topic of research that draws on faculty expertise across disciplines. Proposals must include faculty from multiple departments and/or schools. Funding for this award can be used to augment an already scheduled University event. Documented matching support from institutional and/or external sources is required. The event should include the participation of Penn graduate or undergraduate students in both organization and delivery. A final report must be submitted that outlines the accomplishments of the event, which could include new collaborative endeavors, outreach, publications, and grants

Budget: Applications can request up to $20K. The budget may be dedicated to facilities, honoraria, travel, marketing materials, and other directly associated expenses, including the support of graduate and undergraduate students. Note, staffing expense is not an allowable expense.

Grant Term, 1 year only: Unexpended funds must be returned. A no cost extension must be approved by the Vice Provost for Research. Requests for a no cost extension should be made prior to the expiration of an award. No cost extensions will only be granted for extenuating circumstances. Extensions will not be made for longer than 6 months.

+ Research Opportunity Development Grants: Phase 1 - Research Opportunity Development Grants: Phase 1
Topic Exploration and Team Formation: The Research Opportunity Development Grants (RODG) assists teams of interdisciplinary investigators in exploring new fields that support substantive new research programs. Teams include faculty from multiple departments and/or schools and aim to increase Penn's impact in an emerging field by identifying and securing the necessary resources to continue pursuing their research.

The RODG assists teams of interdisciplinary investigators in exploring new fields that support substantive new research programs. Teams include faculty from multiple departments and/or schools and aim to increase Penn's impact in an emerging field by identifying and securing the necessary resources to continue pursuing their research.

Budget: Applications up to $10,000 will be considered. Salary support for faculty is not allowable.

Grant Term, 1 year only: Unexpended funds must be returned. A no cost extension must be approved by the Vice Provost for Research. Requests for a no cost extension should be made prior to the expiration of an award. No cost extensions will only be granted for extenuating circumstances. Extensions will not be made for longer than 6 months. A progress-to-date report including a revised budget will be required.

+ Research Opportunity Development Grants: Phase 2 - Research Opportunity Development Grants: Phase 2
RODG Phase 2 grants support collaborative preliminary research to provide the outcomes necessary for successful substantive proposals in targeted emerging areas of external support for team research. Expected outcomes would be a new proposal in an emerging research area, co-authored publications, joint presentations, and workshops. Documented matching department and/or school funds will be considered positively.

RODG Phase 2 grants support collaborative preliminary research to provide the outcomes necessary for successful substantive proposals in targeted emerging areas of external support for team research. Expected outcomes would be a new proposal in an emerging research area, co-authored publications, joint presentations, and workshops. Documented matching department and/or school funds will be considered positively.

 

Budget: Applications with requests between $50K to $200K will be considered. Allowable costs include supplies, non-faculty salaries, and travel expenses related to the project. Salary support for faculty is not allowable. Graduate tuition is not an allowable expense.

Grant Term, 2 years:Unexpended funds must be returned. A no cost extension must be approved by the Vice Provost for Research. Requests for a no cost extension should be made prior to the expiration of an award. No cost extensions will only be granted for extenuating circumstances. Extensions will not be made for longer than 6 months. The extension form is available on the website. A progress-to-date report including a budget will be required after one year.



Disciplines for all award programs:The URF supports research in all disciplines. For purposes of review, applications are assigned to four broad disciplinary areas: Biomedical Sciences, Humanities, Natural Sciences and Engineering, and Social Science and Management.

Eligibility for all award programs: Eligibility is limited to Penn assistant, associate, and full professors in any track. Instructors and Research Associates must provide a letter from their Department Chair establishing that the applicant will receive an appointment as an Assistant Professor by the time of the award. Assistant Professors must submit a letter from their Department Chair describing their research independence. CHOP based Penn faculty are eligible to apply however awards must be expended on University of Pennsylvania facilities, equipment and/or on associated University technical staff, postdocs, and undergraduate students. Adjunct Faculty are not eligible to apply .

Faculty are eligible to apply for more than one funding opportunity however it is unlikely that more than one award per faculty member will be made in each cycle.

For more information, download the Frequently Asked Questions. For additional information please contact vprgrant@pobox.upenn.edu.



UPDATED: MARCH 22, 2016
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