President’s Interdisciplinary Seed Grant Program Announced

In his 2017 State of the University Address, President Morehead announced a new internal seed grant program for interdisciplinary proposals addressing five grand challenges:

  • Enhancing Global Health and Well-Being
  • Ensuring Safe Food and Water
  • Promoting Cyber, Domestic, and Global Security
  • Engineering Environmental Sustainability and Resiliency
  • Building Vital and Prosperous Communities

Up to $1 million dollars will be made available to support cross-disciplinary teams of UGA faculty, possibly working with external collaborators from other research universities, government agencies, or the private sector, who submit compelling proposals to address key aspects of these broad themes.  Proposals should describe work that will position teams to be competitive for externally funded multi-investigator and/or multi-institution awards. Proposals may include academic and public service faculty and both research and outreach components when appropriate.


Awards may range from $50,000 to $150,000 per grant proposal, with actual amounts based on itemized budgets that must also be submitted. Funds may be used in any customary way to support research, including for salary/stipend support of key personnel (faculty summer salary capped at one month). These funds are not intended to support conferences, external collaborators, or course buy outs. Awarded funds will be available April 1, 2017 and must be expended by September 30, 2018.

Application Instructions

Teams must submit a short Letter of Intent to by February 28, 2017. It should include the proposal title, names and affiliations of all UGA faculty belonging to the team, and a brief description of the proposal’s goals and approaches, limited to 3 sentences maximum.

Full proposals, submitted as a single PDF, should include the following:

  • Identification of the relevant grand challenge theme.
  • Name, affiliation and email of the UGA PI or coPIs.
  • Names and affiliations of all faculty (or faculty-level) team members; include for each team member a single short paragraph describing their relevant experience and accomplishments.  Faculty may participate in more than one proposal.
  • Project title and project summary, written in lay terms and not to exceed half a page.
  • Work plan (bulk of proposal). What will the team do? Will it build on prior interactions? What are the anticipated outcomes? Be as specific as possible. The work plan should not exceed 5 single-spaced pages with a standard, minimum 11-point font and one inch margins.
  • Identification of future external funding opportunities the team intends to pursue (be specific).
  • Itemized budget.

Submit applications via email to the Office of Research at All proposals must be received by March 17, 2017. Proposals received after this deadline will not be considered.


Proposals will be reviewed by a team of UGA faculty and administrators jointly assembled by the Office of Research and the Office of Public Service and Outreach. Review criteria will include: the degree to which the proposal addresses the identified grand challenge; extent of interdisciplinary collaboration; strength of the team and its leadership; specificity with which the team has identified and researched a subsequent external funding target.