Skip to main content

Discovery Grants

Apply Now | Eligibility and ProcessCategories of Support | Committee
Key Dates | Funding GuidelinesSample of Previously Awarded Projects
VU BreakThru (Blog)

Overview

Discovery Grant

The Discovery Grant program is one of the primary ways Vanderbilt invests in advancing core disciplines, thereby strengthening the scholarly profile of the university. The program is designed to serve as a catalyst for significant external funding sources -- supporting new ideas, cutting-edge research and the development of infrastructure. The Discovery Grant program provides a springboard to make possible external grants that will be more attractive to large federal funding agencies such as the NSF, NIH, DoD, etc. All full-time, VU-employed (Provost-reporting) faculty are eligible.

Eligibility and Process Requirements

  • All full-time, VU-employed (Provost-reporting) faculty are eligible.
  • Must demonstrate an ability to attract new external funding.
  • VUMC-employed faculty may collaborate but funds will only be distributed to the VU lead faculty.
  • Proposals that advance research in areas related to race, diversity and inclusivity are invited.  
  • Proposals involving graduate students are encouraged.
  • For a full list of eligibility and process requirements, please click HERE.

Previously Awarded Projects Sample

Categories of Support

Discovery Grants

  1. Pilot/Feasibility Studies. Up to $25,000/year will be awarded for up to two years. Funds enable investigators to perform key preliminary investigations or studies in new areas of research prior to submitting external grant applications. Proposals must emphasize new directions or ideas as opposed to incremental extensions of established ones. Of particular interest are high-risk proposals with the potential to make significant breakthroughs.
  2. Interdisciplinary Grants. Up to $50,000/year will be awarded for up to two years, for projects involving two or more faculty members from different fields, generally from different departments or schools. Funds enable investigators to perform key preliminary investigations or studies in new areas of research prior to submitting external grant applications. Note: TIPs awards are for existing or emerging institutes and centers that are trans-institutional (multi and inter-disciplinary) in nature, whereas Discovery Grants are for earlier stage efforts that may later evolve into broader programs.
  3. Infrastructure Grants. Up to $100,000/year will be awarded for up to two years, for the establishment of facilities essential for disciplinary-focused research programs. Substantial matching funds are required in this category. Matching fund sources and amounts must be included in the proposal budget.

Key Dates

  • Application portal opens: Dec. 10, 2018 
  • Proposals due: Jan. 28, 2019
  • Award announcements: Spring 2019
  • Funds available: July 1, 2019

Contact

For more information about the program or the proposal process contact Schyler Turrin in the Office of Cross-College Initiatives at OCCI@vanderbilt.edu or via phone (615-875-1027).