For each of the following types of project, instructions are provided for selecting a Core Database to locate funding opportunities.
For the databases, you will need to select your keywords or categories for your area(s) of interests. Refer to the instructions at the right for each database for guidance on performing searches.
Internal NIU Funding
If you are looking to generate pilot data or to get proof of concept, you might consider an NIU Internal Competition such as the Research and Artistry or the Great Journeys Assistantships. Information is available on the Division of Research & Innovative Partnerships website.
All of the funding databases listed in Core Databases support searches for research funding announcements.
Grants.gov can be used to locate support for research from federal agencies only.
Some research projects involve an especially high degree of innovation and novelty, making it difficult to judge their potential impact through more traditional mechanisms. Projects in this category may lack preliminary data establishing feasibility, but simultaneously have the potential to create conceptual or technological breakthroughs.
Although foundation funding does exist for such projects, it is likely to be most helpful to start your search by using grants.gov. You might look in particular for NSF Early-concept Grant for Exploratory Research (EAGER): This mechanism may be used to support exploratory work in its early stages on untested, but potentially transformative, research ideas or approaches. This work might involve radically different approaches, apply new expertise, or engage novel disciplinary or interdisciplinary perspectives.
NIH uses the R21 mechanism to similar ends.
The Foundation Directory will allow you to filter your search for equipment at “Type of Support”.
Specific programs to consider:
This would include projects involving training, curriculum development, instruction demonstration, or efforts to improve pedagogical methods. Examples may include projects that involve evaluation of curriculum or teaching methods, workforce training programs, institutional training programs, and instruction to NIU students or staff, teachers or students in elementary schools, or the general public.
In GrantSearch, by Select an Activity, select “Curriculum/Materials Development” and/or “Training.”
These activities are academic, non-instructional services that translate NIU’s intellectual and professional knowledge, expertise, and resources into the public realm. To find sponsors who support this kind of work, try the Foundation Directory and filter for “Outreach Activities.”
You might also try the Alliance of Illinois Community Foundations, targeting the area where your outreach activities will occur.
Funding for travel grants are increasingly difficult to locate. To search for funding for travel, contact your Research Development Specialist for suggestions.
Collaborations among researchers take many forms ranging from the classic partnership between two faculty members at a single institution to the use by one researcher of another's resources such as a piece of equipment, a biological strain, or a dataset to researchers at multiple institutions.
With the GrantSearch database, at “Select an Activity” choose “Collaborative Activities.”
The National Organization of Research Development Professionals (NORDP) offers an extensive list of collaborative, cross-disciplinary, and team-based funding notices at: http://www.nordp.org/funding-opportunities#ed
The cost of traveling to conferences for dissemination of research findings should typically be included in regular research grant budgets. To develop and/or host a conference, though, you could consider conference grants. To find these opportunities, try a grants.gov basic search, using conference as your keyword.
You might also consider these possibilities:
AHRQ Grant Program for Large or Recurring Conferences
NIH Support for Conferences and Scientific Meetings
Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) are U.S. Government programs in which federal agencies with large research and development (R&D) budgets set aside a small fraction of their funding for competitions among small businesses only. Unique to the STTR mechanism, the small businesses must partner with research institutions (including institutions of higher education). Small businesses keep the rights to any technology developed and are encouraged to commercialize the technology.
The website http://www.sbir.gov/ indicates which agencies participate in SBIR competitions, list open SBIR solicitations, and include FAQs about the SBIR program. In addition, grants.gov or Grant Forward can be used to locate upcoming SBIR/STTR opportunities.