2018 Request for Proposals

The Washington Center for Equitable Growth
Date of event: 
January 18, 2018 - March 5, 2018
Washington, DC
Submission deadline: 
March 5, 2018

Eligibility and Application Info

Solicitations are open to researchers affiliated with U.S. universities. Equitable Growth has two funding streams: Academic and Doctoral/Postdoctoral.

Academic grants are open to researchers affiliated with a U.S. university. The affiliated university must be the fiscal sponsor of the grant.

Doctoral/Postdoctoral grants are open to graduate students currently enrolled in a doctoral program at a U.S. university, and to recent Ph.D. graduates currently in a postdoctoral position at a U.S. university. If you are currently a graduate student or in a postdoctoral position, you may choose to apply for either an Academic or Doctoral/Postdoctoral grant, depending on the pool in which you’d like to compete.

Equitable Growth is willing to fund a wide range of activities, including researcher salary and benefits, research assistance, data purchase, and costs associated with conducting experiments or participating in professional conferences. Our grants cannot cover indirect overhead.

Academic grants are typically in the $25,000 to $100,000 range over 1 to 3 years. Doctoral/Postdoctoral grants are funded at $15,000 over 1 year. We will also consider proposals for larger grants for exceptional projects. We frequently partner with other foundations to support projects jointly or to share proposals that are not a fit for our grant program but which may be of interest to other funders.

For more information about the level of funding we provide, please see the descriptions of our 201420152016, and 2017 grantees’ project descriptions.

How to Apply

Academic grants

To apply for an Academic grant, submit a letter of inquiry using the online submission form. Letters of inquiry are short descriptions of a research project. They should be approximately two pages (about 1,200 words) in length. Letters of inquiry that are more than 2,000 words will not be considered. While we do not want to be overly prescriptive, the word limit is designed to encourage concision and clarity.

Letters of inquiry must include the problem addressed by the research, the methodological approach, and a timeline for completion. We encourage applicants to briefly explain how the research contributes to existing literature and/or whether the project will result in a new data source. Policy implications are also of considerable interest.

If tables, graphs, or other images are helpful in explaining your project, then they can be included. While they will not count against the word limit, we encourage you to limit the use of images to one or two.

A preliminary budget is also required and should be submitted as a brief narrative (approximately 50 to 150 words, though a strict limit is not enforced). At this stage, we are interested in the total expected cost of the project and a general breakdown of those costs (such as salary, research assistance, costs associated with data collection, travel, or conference fees). If applicable, please include a brief description of other secured or anticipated funding sources for the proposed work. A more detailed project budget will be required for applicants who are invited to submit a full proposal.

An abbreviated curriculum vitae is also required.

Academic letters of inquiry are due by 11:59 p.m. EST on January 31, 2018.

If invited, full proposals will be due by 11:59 p.m. EST on April 30, 2018. Full proposals will be reviewed by our research and policy staff, external peer reviewers, and members of our Steering Committee.

Funding decisions will be announced in June. We anticipate that funds will be distributed in early Fall 2018, though the timing of disbursement depends in part on the particulars of the project and the researcher’s home institution.

Doctoral/Postdoctoral grants

To apply for a Doctoral/Postdoctoral grantonline submission form. Doctoral/Postdoctoral applicants do not need to submit a letter of inquiry. Professional references are also not required if only applying for a Doctoral/Postdoctoral grant, though we do request a curriculum vitae.

Doctoral/Postdoctoral proposals should be approximately six single-spaced pages with standard font and margins (not including bibliography). Proposals should address the following: the problem or question your research seeks to address and how it relates to Equitable Growth’s mission, anticipated contribution to existing scholarship, detailed methodological approach, potential policy implications, and timeline for completion.

Doctoral submissions are due by 11:59 p.m. EST on March 5, 2018. Equitable Growth research staff will review all proposals, and the most promising proposals will be sent out for external review and reviewed by policy staff.

A preliminary budget is also required and should be submitted as a narrative. If direct costs such as data purchase or research assistance are anticipated, they should be listed. If funding will be used for support only, simply state that.

Funding decisions will be announced in June. We anticipate that funds will be distributed by the start of the 2018–19 academic year, though the timing of disbursement depends in part on the particulars of the project and whether it will be administered as an individual or institutional grant. The majority of Doctoral/Postdoctoral grants are administered as individual grants and are awarded directly to the individual. Institutional grants are typically awarded when the grantee is not a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, or when funding will be used to purchase data or hire research assistance. Recipients must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident to receive funding directly. Otherwise, funding is administered through the university. A decision on funding type is not needed until after awards are announced, although non-U.S. persons are advised to communicate their intention to apply with their institution to ensure adherence to institutional protocol if funded.

Junior Fellows Program

Equitable Growth has launched an in-residence Junior Fellows Program. The position is open to pre-dissertation and postdoctoral scholars who are currently affiliated with a U.S. university and whose research aligns with Equitable Growth’s funding priorities. Junior fellows are given office space, a full-time salary, and professional support, and are expected to support Equitable Growth’s grant program. Scheduling is flexible to permit for travel to home institutions, as well as academic conferences. Tenure is at least one academic year, with the possibility of extension into a second year.

To apply to the Junior Fellows Program, submit a proposal for a Doctoral/Postdoctoral grant. Application to the program also requires two academic letters of reference, preferably from your chair and an advisor, and a statement of purpose.

References should submit letters via email to grants@equitablegrowth.org with the applicant’s name in the subject line. Letters of reference must be received no later than 11:59 p.m. EST on March 5, 2018. Applicants are responsible for ensuring that letters of reference are submitted by the deadline.

The statement of purpose should be about two pages and should describe your motivating research questions, the direction you anticipate your research agenda taking and how that relates to Equitable Growth’s mission, as well as how you hope to spend your time in Washington and how that will help further your career/research. Statements of purpose and proposals should be uploaded as part of the application.

Junior fellow applicants will automatically be considered for a Doctoral/Postdoctoral grant.

Applicants selected to move forward in the Junior Fellows process will be asked to interview with Equitable Growth staff in person in May 2018. Selection decisions will be announced in June 2018.

Submit your Proposal

Submit your proposal by filling out the online submission form and uploading requested documents. If you have questions or are having trouble with the online form, please email grants@equitablegrowth.org or call (202) 545-3343. If you are having trouble with the online form and it is nearing the deadline, you may email your letter of inquiry/proposal as an attachment to grants@equitablegrowth.org.