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Corporate and Foundation Funding

Corporate and foundation partners are looking to support projects and programs at the U that are unique, exciting, and stand out from the crowd. The University of Utah Corporate and Foundation Relations program can help facilitate the relationship between you and potential partners. Our team can advise strategic approaches, arrange visits, review draft proposals and help translate ideas into fundable projects or programs. Contact Chris Ostrander, ext. 5-7220 if you are interested in applying for an opportunity listed below.  


Simons Foundation – SFARI Pilot Award 
Deadline: April 18, 2019 
Grant Amount: $300,000 

The mission of the Simons Foundation Autism Research Initiative (SFARI) is to improve the understanding, diagnosis and treatment of autism spectrum disorders (ASD) by funding innovative research of the highest quality and relevance. 

The goal of the Pilot Award is to provide early support for exploratory ideas, particularly those with novel hypotheses. Appropriate projects for this mechanism include those considered higher risk but with the potential for transformative results. To get a better understanding of SFARI’s different RFAs and whether the Pilot Award may be the best mechanism to support your project, please read our blog post “SFARI RFA reboot: Why, what and how? 

In particular, we encourage applications that propose research to link genetic or other ASD risk factors to molecular, cellular, circuit or behavioral mechanisms of ASD. Please read more about SFARI’s scientific perspectives here. We also strongly advise applicants to familiarize themselves with the current projects and other resources that SFARI supports and to think about how their proposals might complement existing efforts. 

The total budget of a Pilot Award is $300,000 or less, including 20% indirect costs, over a period of up to two (2) years. 

Click here to learn more. To apply to this opportunity, please contact Chris Ostrander, 5-7220. 


WT Grant Foundation – Research on Reducing Inequality 
Deadline: May 1, 2019 
Grant Amount: Up to $600,000 

The research grants programs support high-quality field-initiated studies that are relevant to policies and practices that affect the lives of young people ages 5 to 25 in the United States. Research proposals are evaluated on the basis of their fit with a given focus area; the strength and feasibility of their designs, methods, and analyses; their potential to inform change; and their contribution to theory and empirical evidence. 

In our focus area of reducing inequality, we support research to build, test, and increase understanding of approaches to reducing inequality in youth outcomes, especially on the basis of race, ethnicity, economic standing, language minority status, or immigrant origins. We are interested in research on programs, policies, and practices to reduce inequality in academic, social, behavioral, and economic outcomes. 

Click here to learn more. To apply to this opportunity, please contact Chris Ostrander, 5-7220. 


James S. McDonnell Foundation – Teachers as Learners 
Deadline: May 8, 2019 
Grant Amount: Up to $100,000 

In 2017, the James S McDonnell Foundation (JSMF) inaugurated a program supporting use-oriented research expanding our understanding of teachers as learners and as agents of change in education.   The focus of the program’s call for pre-proposals in 2017 and 2019 is on facilitating high quality communication in classrooms.    The2018 cohort of funded projectscan be viewed here. 

To contribute to filling an existing research and knowledge gap, the James S McDonnell Foundation (JSMF) is announcing its second call for pre-proposals for team-based research as described in detail below.  Following review of pre-proposals, a select set of teams will be invited to submit full proposals for funding consideration.  Up to 6 projects could be selected for funding. 

This second call for pre-proposals continues JSMF’s commitment to supporting projects taking a cognitive and developmental science approach to understanding teachers as learners in the context of the many influences on teacher change across career trajectories.  A survey of the current landscape reveals that there is significant focus on small-scale experimental work on student cognition and on descriptive work on teaching – but the lack of a cognitive science framework for how teachers learn to process, evaluate, improve, and change their use of evidence based practices within a complex, dynamic system. 

JSMF encourages pre-proposals for projects that have the capacity to bridge gaps in the topics represented in the currently funded projects or that complement the current projects by focusing on subject matter content or teacher and classroom populations that might be under-represented.   Proposed projects should consider the ecological constraints of the educational context in order to address the lack of sustainability and/or retention of interventions and practice changes. 

Click here to learn more. To apply to this opportunity, please contact Chris Ostrander, 5-7220. 


Templeton Foundation – Academic Cross Training Fellowship 
Deadline: May 3, 2019 
Grant Amount: Up to $220,000 

The John Templeton Foundation invites applications for its Academic Cross-Training (ACT) Fellowship program through May 3, 2019, with fellowships to begin Fall 2020. The ACT Fellowship program is intended to equip recently tenured philosophers and theologians with the skills and knowledge needed to study Big Questions that require substantive and high-level engagement with empirical science. 

Each ACT Fellowship will provide up to $220,000 (US dollars) for up to 3 contiguous years of support for a systematic and sustained course of study in an empirical science such as physics, psychology, biology, genetics, cognitive science, neuroscience, or sociology. Acceptable courses of study might include a plan to audit undergraduate and graduate-level courses, a plan to spend time in residence at a research lab, or a plan to earn a degree in an empirical science. This iteration of the program will also permit applicants to request that up to one year of the ACT Fellowship be used to support a small-scale pilot scientific research project that improves or enhances the capacity, skill, and talent of the fellow to investigate the above-described Big Questions. Fellows may undertake their study at their home institution or another institution. All fellows must have a faculty mentor in their cross-training discipline. 

Eligibility: 

  • Ph.D. or equivalent degree from an accredited university. 
  • Employment by an accredited U.S. or non-U.S. university or college. The employer agrees to sponsor the applicant, be the ultimate recipient of fellowship funds, administer the distribution of funds, and make reports to JTF on the use of the funds. 
  • Received tenure after September 1, 2008. 
  • Primary faculty appointment within a philosophy, religious studies, religion, or theology department. 

Click here to learn more. To apply to this opportunity, please contact Chris Ostrander, 5-7220 


Russel Sage Foundation – Decision Making and Human Behavior in Context  
Deadline: May 23, 2019 
Grant Amount: $175,000 

The Russell Sage Foundation (RSF) is launching a new special initiative on Decision Making and Human Behavior in Context that will support innovative research on decision making across the social sciences that examines causes, consequences, processes, or context from a behavioral or alternative perspective. We seek to support a wide range of research on decision-making in context by scholars in psychology, political science, sociology, and other social science fields who are pursuing questions consistent with the aims of the Foundation. This initiative complements RSF’s long-standingProgram which continues to encourage the submission of proposals. 

This initiative will support research proposals from multiple methodological perspectives that will further our understanding of decision making processes and human behavior in the contexts of work, race, ethnicity, immigration, and social inequality, broadly conceived, in the U.S. Priority will be given to research related to our core programsand otherspecial initiatives. Limited consideration will be given to projects that test well-established behavioral effects without examining the overarching context or the underlying mechanisms. 

Research in this area is expanding rapidly. RSF is open to a range of questions consistent with its mission, and has a particular interest in the following research areas: 

  • Biases and Misperceptions 
  • Motivations and Incentives 
  • Habits and Behavior Change 
  • Affect and Emotions 
  • Networks and Contexts 

Click here to learn more. To apply to this opportunity, please contact Chris Ostrander, 5-7220 


Russel Sage Foundation – Immigration Research  
Deadline: May 23, 2019  
Grant Amount: Up to $150,000 

The Russel Sage Foundation/Carnegie Corporation Initiative on Immigration and Immigrant Integration seeks to support innovative research on the effects of race, citizenship, legal status, and politics, political culture and public policy on outcomes for immigrants and for the Native-born of different racial and ethnic groups and generations. The funder is especially interests in novel uses of under-utilized data and the development of new methods for analyzing these data.  

Click here to learn more. To apply to this opportunity, please contact Chris Ostrander, 5-7220 


MacArthur Foundation—100&Change 
Deadline: August 6, 2019 
Grant Amount: $100,000,000 

MacArthur has launched a new round of its 100&Change competition for a single $100 million grant to help solve one of the world’s most critical social challenges. 100&Change remains open to organizations and collaborations working in any field, anywhere in the world. Proposals must identify a problem and offer a solution that promises significant and durable change; they will be accepted online only from April 30 to August 6, 2019  

The U will hold an info and Q&A session on Tuesday, April 23, at 10am for faculty, students, and staff interested in applying for the 100&Change program. Please email Chris Ostrander to RSVP.

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Last Updated: 4/13/21