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Information Regarding the Stimulus Package

Internal Announcements

March 11, 2009

The Leonard Davis Institute is introducing a new fast track support program that will make available up to $100,000 in funds over the next few months to help LDI Senior Fellows accelerate the development of federal research proposals.  

The goal of the fast track support program is to assist Senior Fellows in submitting new research proposals and supplements to existing research proposals in response to the stimulus bill, officially known as the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA).  See and for the most up to date information on funding opportunities.  The best tactical responses to the ARRA are uncertain and probably individually tailored.  But on the whole, the ARRA increases to research funding represent a great opportunity that we want to encourage LDI Senior Fellows to examine.

Since we are not sure what support Senior Fellows might need, we will consider varied requests, including support to hire temporary research assistants or writers to facilitate proposal or supplement development, literature reviews, and the like.  Although it seems unlikely that new pilot data can be collected in time to facilitate proposal development, we would consider those requests if they can be justified.  We cannot consider requests for faculty support.  We aim to support the incremental efforts of responding to the new research funding.

Given the rolling distribution of ARRA funds, we are currently accepting requests to support Challenge Grants only. (We will be soliciting requests for support for other initiatives and deadlines at later times.)  Please send requests to Kelly Johnson by next Friday, March 20 th.  These request should be no more than half a page.

In your request, please specify:

  1. Which Challenge Grant you are targeting.  See for the list of specific challenge topics.
  2. The aim(s) of your application.
  3. The amount of your request, We expect that most requests will be for $5,000 or less.  However, we will consider requests of up to $10,000 if well justified.
  4. What you will do with the funds and how the funds will make a difference in your effort to submit a Challenge Grant.  Please be as specific as you can about how the extra support will lead to a competitive proposal that could not otherwise be produced. 

We want to encourage Senior Fellows from all schools in the University to consider whether the ARRA presents opportunities for their research programs, alone or in combination with other faculty.  Some of the best work Penn produces engages faculty from across the University, and we are particularly interested in encouraging those efforts.  The School of Medicine has created a website maintaining current information about grant opportunities made available through the ARRA.  It requires a Penn Key for access.

This fast track support mechanism is only one way LDI will help investigators respond to ARRA funding opportunities.  Some additional plans include:

·          Money to produce proposals in response to other ARRA initiatives.

·          New networking services to help faculty identify collaborators with specific research skills in comparative effectiveness research and other techniques relevant to the ARRA.

·          Identification of new collaborators to facilitate the completion of projects that might be funded under these initiatives.

·          Standing meetings to provide proposal feedback and guidance.

We will send announcements about these opportunities later.  In the meantime, please let us know if you have other ideas for how LDI can help advance faculty research.

This fast track support program will temporarily displace LDI’s typical pilot grant program, which we plan to continue later this calendar year when it will not compete with the current activity.  We know that LDI’s pilot programs are particularly useful to some members of the University community who would not otherwise compete for new ARRA grants and we want to support those individuals as well.

David A Asch
Daniel Polsky




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For more information
or any questions
please contact:
Josie Rook
Executive Director
Office of the
Vice Provost for Research


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