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Research Grant Opportunities
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The Scan│Design Foundation Grant


The UW Medicine Department of Anesthesiology & Pain Medicine and the Scan│Design Foundation are pleased to announce the availability of a new funding program designed to support creative, exploratory, cutting edge research in pain. This program was established to support projects that may be too innovative and speculative for traditional funding sources but still have a high likelihood of producing important findings. It is expected that investigations supported by these grants will yield high impact findings and result in major grant applications and significant publications in high impact journals. The ultimate goal of the program is to improve the lives of people affected by pain. We encourage applications for research proposals that involve new interdisciplinary and interprofessional collaborations and that are innovative and novel.

Scan | Design Foundation Research Innovation Awards program will provide research awards (typically $20,000 - $50,000) to University of Washington faculty and students who are working to deepen our understanding of pain and improve our systems for treating it. Investigators across all stages of their career and from any of the University of Washington affiliated departments are encouraged to apply for this funding. Eligible projects should be completed with one year of project support.

Priority will be given to early stage investigators who have not yet achieved major research funding. However, investigators at any stage of career are encouraged to apply for this funding, particularly if this research area would constitute a new focus for their program of research. Only sole Principal Investigator applications will be accepted.

Grant review for this RFP will include translational, multidisciplinary reviewers from the UW, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and Seattle Children's Hospital. The review committee will use modified NIH criteria* to score applications, placing additional emphasis on Innovation and Overall Potential Impact criteria. Written progress reports and an oral presentation of research progress are due every 6 months to the Research Grant Committee and a final report is due within 90 days of completion of the research

Written progress reports and an oral presentation of research progress are due every 6 months to the Research Grant Committee and a final report is due within 90 days of completion of the research.

Proposals will be evaluated based on:

  1. Innovation (this may include novel applications of technology to understand pain or address issues in pain management; investigation of novel approaches to pain treatment; or novel measurement approaches)
  2. Scientific merit and overall impact
  3. The applicant's demonstrated competence and capability to execute the proposed work

*Please see NIH criteria for definitions of overall impact, significance, investigator(s), innovation, approach, and environment:

Eligibility Categories

To be eligible for this award, principal investigators must fit one of these categories:

  • Undergraduate, graduate, or postdoctoral students at the University of Washington with an identified scientific mentor
  • Research Scientist with an affiliation at the University of Washington
  • Faculty members with appointments at the level of instructor, assistant professor, associate professor, or professor with an affiliation at the University of Washington
  • A letter of intent (LOI) must be submitted. The Principal Investigator (PI) may be invited to submit an application subsequently, based on approval of the LOI.
    1. Letter of Intent: The LOI should be no longer than 1.5 pages and must be submitted electronically as a single .pdf, .doc, or .docx file by October 15, 2021 (single-spaced, Arial 11-point font, 1/2 inch margins). The LOI can be submitted online here:
    2. Include the following sections:
      1. Title of Project, Key Personnel (including affiliations)
      2. Proposed start date
      3. Description of Project. Briefly describe your proposed project (limit = 1 page). Include Aims, Significance, Innovation, and Research Approach. Applicants must clearly demonstrate why the research is novel or innovative.
      4. Future Plans. Briefly describe your future plans (limit = ½ page), i.e., how the funding will be used to support future full-scale research.
      5. Plan for Scientific Mentorship. Student and postdoc applications must describe a plan for scientific mentorship and include their mentor on the LOI (signature required)

Application Format

  1. Applications must be submitted in English
  2. An application cannot be submitted unless an LOI has been submitted and approved by the Research Grant Committee.
  3. The following items must be submitted electronically as a single .pdf, .doc, or .docx file by March 1, 2022 (single-spaced, page limits as noted, Arial 11-point font, 1/2 inch margins)
    1. Project Summary /Abstract: (30 lines)
    2. Research Proposal: 4 pages
      1. Specific Aims and Hypotheses (1 page max)
      2. Significance and Innovation
      3. Preliminary studies (if applicable)
      4. Approach (Design, Methods, and Data Analysis)
    3. References: limit to 2 pages
    4. Biosketch: 4 pages (new NIH format) of the PI and other key personnel
    5. One year budget and budget justification: 2 pages; Indirect costs cannot be covered by the grant
    6. For student applications: Letter of support should be provided by scientific mentor to describe the mentoring plan
  4. Do not submit appendices or reprints. Tables and figures must be incorporated within the page limits noted above.

Key Dates

RFA Released: August 15, 2021
Letter of Intent deadline: October 15, 2021
Invitations to Submit Applications will be sent by: December 1, 2021
Full Application deadline: March 1, 2022
Award announcement: May 1, 2022
Award start date: June 1, 2022