Proposal Development Milestones and Understanding Technical vs non-Technical docs
As part of this Proposal Development Series, we recently talked about
the assignment confirmation email that research faculty receive after a
proposal has been assigned to a DER Research Administrator. Those
emails nearly always include a timeline designed to help keep you from
having your proposal be considered late, or worse, at risk. These
deadlines provide milestones in the proposal development process that
enable a typical proposal to be reviewed for compliance and submitted on
time. Following these timelines helps us proactively reduce
unanticipated barriers that could delay or halt the progress of your
Milestone deadlines associated with the proposal development process in College of Engineering:
Business days before sponsor deadline - No later than - Action required as part of the deadline
7 business days before - 5:00 p.m. - Final budget, budget justification, SOW to DER for preview/preapproval
5 business days before - 5:00 p.m. - All FINAL non-technical documents to DER (including signed Subaward documents)
3 business days before - 12:00 noon - Final Proposal (PD) Routed by DER for Submission to avoid LATE status
1 business day before - 12:00 noon - Final Proposal (PD) Routed by DER for Submission to avoid AT RISK status
DER is aware that all proposals have unique characteristics and
require varying amounts of time to complete the proposal development
process. Clear communication is key—work closely with your DER assigned
research administrator to understand when and why your proposal
documents are needed, and to maintain a clear timeline for successful
When reviewing these proposal development milestones, many faculty
have asked, “What is considered a technical document?” Documents that
are considered “technical” may vary based on the specific sponsor and
proposal requirements. One quick method to swiftly help you
determine which documents fall into the “technical” bucket is to ask
yourself, “Will the content information in this specific document
require updating if the project science for this proposal changes?” If so, that document is a technical document. All other documents are considered non-technical documents.
Non-technical documents are documents that can and should be
completed early in the process. Completing the non-technical documents
early on provides more time for faculty to polish the science and
technical aspects of their proposal. This also allows your Research
Administrator more time to conduct a complete compliance review and to
These documents are always considered non-technical (if applicable):
Cost share support
Letter(s) of support or collaboration
Facility or equipment documents
Building planning documents (used for projects working with MSU Office of Planning and Budget - OPB)
All personnel documents (bio, current and pending, COA, etc.)
Scope of work
Data / Sharing plan(s)
Animal or human subject documents
Any agency-based supplemental forms (used for system-to-system submission)
Similar or same documents from subs (receiving pass-through funding)
More specific sponsor information related to these forms/documents can be found at OSP’s Sponsor Information page. Additionally, all sponsor-initiated policy updates related to these documents are published weekly in the DER Newsletter.
As a reminder, DER works in alignment with OSP’s Proposal Deadline Policy
to help reduce any unforeseen glitches resulting in last minute
proposal submissions. College level and university wide deadline
policies have been instituted to provide necessary time to develop a
compliant proposal that follows sponsor guidelines. These key dates are
applied based on sponsor submission deadlines. Note: MSU’s deadline
dates may be moved up if the submission date is requested early by the
lead sponsor to comply with prime sponsor submission deadline.
If you have questions regarding other helpful tips to promote success with submitting your proposal, please send an email to email@example.com.
Save the Date: Thursday, September 27th from 12-1 PM EDT,
DER presents DER is Here to Help - proposal & proposal development resources geared to promote success (Seminar Room (3405A EB) & virtually (Zoom)). For newer faculty, it is critical to understand all of the incredible resources that are available to help strengthen each of your future proposals. It is also important to understand the required steps to submit a university-endorsed proposal. For more senior faculty, awareness of new resources may help to streamline your proposal development processes and possibly open new streams of funding. Join the DER team as we present DER is Here to Help. This seminar will focus on services offered within the Division of Engineering Research, and the various ways we can help you increase your sponsored research expenditures. Feel free to share any questions during the session. All faculty and staff are welcome and are encouraged to be prepared with any questions. We hope to see you there!
Spartans are innovating batteries, electronics, composite materials and more to push electric vehicles farther while training the nation’s future workforce
This July, the United States Army announced a new $9M initiative it’s pursuing with Michigan State University to make electric autonomous vehicles safer, smarter and more dependable.
With support from the Army’s Ground Vehicle Systems Center, or GVSC, Spartan engineers are working to create every advantage they can for vehicles that will serve our country’s service members. But it doesn’t take long to see how these innovations will benefit civilians, too.
In fact, the team will first demonstrate its new ideas, designs and technologies on a commercially available passenger car before disseminating these advances to other vehicles.
For today’s average driver, perhaps the biggest problem MSU’s researchers are working to solve is related to range anxiety, the fear that electric vehicles, or EVs, will run out of charge before reaching their destination.
Description: The Advancing U.S. Thin-Film Solar
Photovoltaics FOA will focus on accelerating the capabilities of two
thin-film photovoltaic (PV) technologies: metal-halide perovskite PV and
cadmium telluride (CdTe) PV technologies. It will fund innovative
industrial research and development (R&D) projects that will enable
future commercialization of hybrid tandem perovskite PV, defined as a
perovskite PV in combination with another technology such as silicon or
CdTe. It will also fund industrial research, development, and
demonstration (RD&D) projects across the materials, equipment,
installation, and performance monitoring sectors to improve the
competitiveness of the domestic CdTe PV industry. This FOA promotes
American leadership in thin-film PV technology by promoting the domestic
manufacture of thin-film PV modules. With this goal in mind, only
for-profit entities and teams led by for-profit entities may apply to
Description: As partner states with us under the TPF-5(438)
Smart Work Zone Deployment Initiative (SWZDI) pooled fund, I am
requesting your assistance in distributing this call for research
proposals to be considered by the SWZDI pooled fund for CY24. If you’re
willing, I would appreciate a notification of this opportunity be sent
to your research RFP distribution lists focusing on universities and
consultant research investigators. This posting does have some
restrictions related to the proposing team’s composition as discussed on
the first page under Eligibility. The response deadline is October 9th.
Additional Information: The purpose of this award is to support highly innovative, high-impact research that could ultimately lead to critical discoveries or major advancements that will accelerate the field of cardiovascular and/or cerebrovascular research. Research deemed innovative may introduce a new paradigm, challenge current paradigms, look at existing problems from new perspectives, or exhibit other uniquely creative qualities.
The Innovative Project Award (IPA) promotes unexplored ideas; therefore, preliminary data is not required and not accepted as part of the proposal. However, a solid rationale for the work must be provided. If you provide preliminary data, the application will be disqualified.
Proposed work should not be the next logical step of previous work but should have a high probability to revealing new avenues of investigation, if successful. The idea proposed here should not have been submitted in whole or in part in a previous proposal for AHA support.
At the time of application, PI must hold a post-baccalaureate Ph.D. degree or equivalent, or doctoral-level clinical degree, such as MD, DO, DVM, PharmD, or PhD in nursing, public health, or other clinical health science.
Description: BSF is announcing the availability of funds for short scientific trips by young American or Israeli scientists to the other country.
In 2023 the program will have two calls, which will each support 10 trips. Grants will be $6k each. This is the second CALL for 2023.
The program is open to PhD students doing research that requires facilities or expertise that are not available in their home countries.
Applications will be evaluated on the basis of their merit in light of the overall aim of the program, and the qualifications of the applicants. The grant will be awarded through the grantee's institute. As guiding principles, support will be awarded to applications that meet the following criteria:
The applicant is a young American or Israeli researcher, and the visit is to the other country.
The research is in an accredited higher education or scientific institution (including hospitals).
The applicant's research is in any of the scientific fields supported by the BSF (full list is on the BSF website), regardless of the split program.
The purpose of the trip is limited to the use of facilities, or acquiring expertise not available in the applicant's home country.
Application is for travel that has not yet taken place.
Resubmission may sometimes be possible after 12 months and with pre-approval by the BSF office.
Additional information about the Prof. R. Rahamimoff program can be found at: https://www.bsf.org.il/funding..., and must be submitted using the form and the instructions that can be downloaded from the BSF website.
Grant Amount: Up to $200k - Deadline: November 14, 2023 (3 pm MT)
Additional Information: Source water protection (SWP) provides the first critical barrier against contamination of water that is used as a potable source. Key SWP activities, such as conservation of sensitive riverine areas and direct intervention to control the generation of contaminants, form an integral part of a catchment-to-consumer protection strategy for assuring drinking water safety in a holistic fashion. As an example, according to AWWA’s 2021 report, “Source Water Evaluation Guide for PFAS,” understanding and controlling exposure to PFAS in drinking water begins with source water protection. SWP is a strategy that provides a utility or a water resource manager with an opportunity to avoid or reduce treatments that require chemical, energy, and human resources, by minimizing or eliminating contaminants to the source water to maintain a higher quality of water that can be treated and used to provide potable water. These strategies can provide long-term protection of source water to promote and maintain sustainable and resilient water supplies for utilities and municipalities. “ it is crucial to implement robust and quantitative “performance-based monitoring and evaluation” (P-M&E) to determine whether SWP protection measures have met their goal. There is a strong need to build from the current state-of-the-practice and develop an enhanced approach for incorporating effectiveness metrics of P-M&E into source water protection measures (on an individual measure and integrated basis) that can directly link to water utility operational needs, improved overall utility performance, and increase accountability in spending funds on SWP programs by utilities and municipalities.
This research will:
Advance source water protection and watershed-level point and non-point source pollution prevention, interception, and remediation strategies, and quantify the costs and benefits of each;
Develop a robust approach for integrating P-M&E metrics with cost/benefit analysis, life-cycle assessment, triple-bottom-line framework, and other relevant approaches to quantify the value of SWP strategies to reduce or prevent source water contamination (e.g., PFAS and nutrients). This includes perspectives from diverse utilities (e.g., based on land uses, weather patterns, geography, source of raw water such as riverine, lake/reservoir, and/or groundwater, and other criteria);
Prioritize meaningful performance measurements such as water quality improvement data, environmental/ecological service value, and overall utility operational performance.
Grant Amount: Up to $150k - Deadline: November 14, 2023 (3 pm MT)
Additional Information: Despite the differences in monitoring infrastructure, locations, and testing endpoints in watershed systems and even between combined sewer systems (CSS) and separate sewer systems (SSS), this project aims to identify sensing technologies, analysis and modeling solutions/tools, and successful case studies that incorporate both watershed and sewershed systems into the One Water context for monitoring and decision making. Such “One Water” or “Three Waters” integrated water cycle management plans and strategies are undertaken in some jurisdictions as part of their strategic business planning.
There are three main topics to review as part of the case studies:
Of interest are approaches and successful case studies that have demonstrated the fusing of sensing infrastructure data and analytics with modeling approaches (including AI/ML methods) that provide the scientific basis for quantifying the feedbacks and impacts of wastewater discharges on watersheds and that connect the sewershed and watershed monitoring, modelling, and management into one integrated package.
Also of interest is identifying approaches and cases where information gleaned from these analyses have been used to inform policy or long-term control planning efforts. Of special interest is the use of real-time sensing data to develop real-time decision support tools that guide utility operators and watershed managers on how best to operate their respective systems to mitigate adverse impacts.
A final question relates to optimal allocation of resources, where integration of sewershed and watershed monitoring and management planning programs has provided evidence to develop least-community-cost solutions to pollution control challenges. This may include informing decisions on the best and most efficient relative allocation of resources between options to mitigate sewershed contamination, discharges and overflows from sewerage systems, sewage treatment, water resources management, and water treatment.
Grant Amount: Up to $100k - Deadline: Proposals due by November 14, 2023 (3 pm MT)
Additional Information: Without better understanding and sector‐specific guidance, water utilities may remain underprepared for future climate disasters.
To address these challenges, we seek to develop a user-friendly decision-support tool to assist water sector leaders in evaluating budget decisions related to climate-resilient drinking water, wastewater, and stormwater investments.Given the obstacles facing water utilities today, the audience for this effort are water utility leaders, as well as utility staff and managers involved in relevant areas such as climate change adaptation planning, capital improvement planning, and budget planning.
The desired outcomes of this project are:
Develop a comprehensive framework to maximize the effectiveness of water utilities’ limited resources and ratepayer funds, ensure the long-term sustainability of water services, and promote climate-resilient, multi-beneficial solutions;
Advance quantitative approaches to promoting climate-resilient infrastructure and approaches in concert with competing utility objectives; and
Enhance utilities’ ability to communicate with and engage stakeholders about climate adaptation investments and approaches.
To develop water sector‐specific guidance, including a decision-support tool on how to make a case for investments in climate‐resilient stormwater, wastewater, and drinking water infrastructure, considering both structural approaches (i.e., physical assets) and non‐ structural approaches (e.g., codes and standards).
To advance quantitative approaches to utility decision-making about climate resilient capital projects, as well as other approaches within the web of complex challenges facing water utilities today.
To enhance stakeholder engagement and education by incorporating a collaborative component in the decision-support tool, enabling utilities to engage community members, utility staff, and peer agencies around climate-resilient water investments.
Additional Information: The National Fish and
Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) will award grants that catalyze the voluntary
implementation of electronic technologies (ET) for fisheries catch,
effort, and/or compliance monitoring, and improvements to fishery
information systems in U.S. fisheries. The Electronic Monitoring and
Reporting (EMR) Grant Program will advance the National Oceanic and
Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) sustainable fisheries goals to
partner with fishermen and other stakeholders, state agencies, and
Fishery Information Networks to systematically integrate technology into
fisheries data collection and observations as well as streamline data
management and use for fisheries management. NFWF’s priority fisheries
include the Gulf of Mexico reef fish fishery, the New England groundfish
fishery, the West Coast groundfish fishery, and the Alaska halibut and
groundfish fisheries, but other fisheries are fully eligible and have a
strong history of receiving funding. Proposals should address one or
more of the program priorities listed below:
E-technology in fisheries data collection.
Modernize data management systems.
Matching contributions from non-federal sources (both cash and
in-kind) must equal or exceed a 1:1 ratio (100% of the requested
amount). NFWF recognizes that it may be a challenge to meet the required
1:1 match ratio. NFWF has a limited funds available to assist
with meeting the match requirement for some applicants, especially
those working with underserved communities.
Description: The objective of this FOA is to competitively solicit cost-shared research proposals for pilot-scale field deployment and validation of efficient, cost-effective solutions ready for pre-commercialization that can eliminate flaring and non-safety related venting of natural gas at the well site.
Projects sought under this FOA include the use of innovative technologies for processing and separating oil and associated gas at the well site designed to eliminate flaring, as well as new technologies designed to convert the associated natural gas into value-added solid or liquid products. Proposals can also develop technologies that use both processing and conversion, provided the applicant demonstrates that the overall process is technically feasible, economically feasible and ready for pilot-scale field testing at the well site.
Proposals must include information on the performance of the technology to date and clearly illustrate pre-commercial status of the system in terms of its potential economic viability. Adequate consideration must also be given on how the proposed system will be deployed at the specific wellsite selected as part of the project. This should include details on any required construction and include consideration for existing infrastructure and the topology of the field site. Detailed discussion should also be included on the planned operation of the system at the well site that clearly establishes the daily target volume of natural gas that will be processed and/or converted, the required utilities, and the volume per day of any product and/or waste streams.
Unilever - Nutritional
interventions for telomere defense - Unilever is seeking novel nutritional interventions,
specifically ingredients or blends of ingredients suitable for dietary
supplements, to help maintain optimal telomere length.
Private Company - Antibodies
for food safety lateral flow assays - The company is seeking collaborators with expertise in
developing highly sensitive, specific, and robust antibodies for use in lateral
flow assays. They are also looking for opportunities to buy or license
antibodies that are already developed.
General Mills - Making
ice cream more resilient towards fluctuations in temperature - General Mills is seeking technologies to make ice
cream more resilient towards temperature fluctuations in terms of textural and
physical stability, without compromising the sensory experience. Potential
solutions can include ingredients, processing, distribution, and storage.
Description: DER has a catalog of research and funding seminars available on demand. Seminar topics range from critical instruction for new faculty through advanced training for senior research faculty. These presentations include instruction from experts regarding themes that include best practices in research, MSU policy, sponsor compliance, industry specific seminars, and more. Check them out today and utilize this incredible resource to help streamline your proposal development and promote success in your research. Watch now on demand!!!
Recent seminar presentations include:
DER is Here to Help (proposal & proposal development resources geared to promote success)
Tips for Writing a Persuasive Grant Proposal (grant writing to ‘sell’ a project to funders)
Finding Funding (tips for finding funding to support your research)
Roles and Responsibilities (tips for understanding roles and responsibilities at each stage of the project)
CAREER Award Workshop - Session 1 (best practices and strategies for producing successful NSF Career proposals)
Does effort reporting for your grants and contracts seem more cumbersome than it should be? CGA has compiled a very
helpful list of answers to Frequently Asked Questions. Topics range from reporting deadlines, to resolving errors, and everything in between!
As you peruse this list, you might notice that there is a dedicated email address for any questions or issues you may have when submitting effort reporting. Please use firstname.lastname@example.org to expedite service.