The University’s Office of Research has launched a new internal grant program to help support faculty research opportunities and advance collaborative scholarship. The program, announced Monday by Vice President for Research Gina Lee-Glauser, provides a total of $150,000 in funding for faculty to develop essential relationships; obtain foundational results to expand or sustain their research, scholarly or creative activities; or strengthen and foster interdisciplinary collaboration across the University.
“This program is really designed to promote scholarly exploration,” says Lee-Glauser. “It is not intended to provide funding for an entire research project, but rather to cover preliminary expenses that allow faculty to explore compelling intellectual questions and potential collaborations that lead to great research activity. We have all the elements here at Syracuse to pursue research related to some of the most critical issues of the day—the environment, aging, technology, national security—integrating the physical and life sciences, engineering, and humanities, social sciences and the arts. This is an opportunity to start forging the kind of cross-disciplinary connections that maximize our capability to develop sustainable solutions to these and other complex challenges.”
Interim Vice Chancellor and Provost Liz Liddy says the research grant program advances one of the key components of the University’s Academic Strategic Plan. “This initiative presents an exciting opportunity for us to expand our institutional research portfolio in ways that encourage scholarly innovation and help to advance Syracuse’s reputation for excellence in research and creative activity,” Liddy says. “It is an opportunity for faculty across the University—from the arts and humanities to the STEM fields—to explore the potential for collaborations that foster a culture of innovation and expand externally funded scholarship activity on campus.”
The program was conceived to promote scholarly activity not only across the traditionally research-heavy STEM fields, but across all disciplines. “I was very pleased to learn about this new program,” says Gerald Greenberg, senior associate dean for the College of Arts and Sciences. “Recent history indicates there are many scholars here at Syracuse University whose research benefits from travel to off-campus sites, as well as from collaborative relationships with local colleagues and scholars at other institutions. I am confident the faculty in the Humanities Division of the College of Arts and Sciences and others interested in the humanities across campus are well positioned to benefit from the availability of such grants.”
Requests for funding can be made at three levels:
Seed funds and Small-Scale funds: Seed funds of up to $1,000 and small-scale funds of up to $15,000 will be awarded to help cover travel, the costs associated with collecting preliminary data, the logistics associated with fostering new collaborations or acquiring external expertise, or other potential expenses relating to the development of new scholarly initiatives.
Bridge funds: This category provides support of up to $30,000 for externally funded projects whose renewal applications were not recommended for award and require gap funding to sustain them until the next funding year. One-to-one matching funds are required.
A total of $150,000 will be allocated annually to support projects of up to one year’s duration. Of that total, $15,000 will be earmarked for seed fund proposals and $135,000 earmarked for small-scale and bridge funding proposals.
Seed funding requests will be reviewed by the University’s associate deans for research; small-scale funding requests will be reviewed by external reviewers or non-conflicted Syracuse University experts in concert with the associate deans for research. Funding recommendations for both will be made to the vice president for research, who will select requests for support based on several criteria, including merit and feasibility, potential to enhance the faculty member’s research activity or advance collaboration, institutional or national priorities, and distribution of funds across schools and colleges and/or disciplines. Requests for bridge funds will be handled by the vice president for research, with consideration given to peer reviews, the principal investigator’s plans to respond, the project’s relevance to the University and national or other priorities.