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Funding Opportunity

University of Rochester

Department of Public Health Sciences


PHS is currently not offering funding opportunities - please stay tuned for future updates


The Department of Public Health Sciences (PHS) has funds to support a limited number of Research Pilot Projects. The objective of the pilot project should be relevant to the mission of PHS, namely it should have a substantial component of or impact on public health sciences, practices, or policies. The focus of the pilot program is to stimulate new collaborations with PHS faculty. Therefore, we are soliciting proposals that support collaborative relationships between investigators who do not have a recent history (past 3 years) of joint funding or who are looking to expand their current collaborative efforts into new directions, and for whom the pilot project would be catalytic in their effort to obtain extramural funding. Applicants may request a maximum of $25,000 for the duration of one year and must hold a position of Assistant Professor or higher.



This pilot program is intended to provide seed funding to help investigators (Assistant Professor or higher) develop new research directions, promote new interactions with PHS investigators, and obtain preliminary data for extramural grant submissions, with the goal of submitting a proposal within the year following the end of the pilot award.


Guidelines for preparing proposals:

Funds are restricted to research expenses and cannot be used to support faculty salary or travel. The program does not intend to fund large equipment purchases. No UR faculty member can have concurrent funding from multiple PHS Pilots.  As they are developing their proposals, applicants are encouraged to present at the Research Methods Forum directed by the Biostatistics, Epidemiology and Research Design function in the Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute. The Research Methods Forum is an interactive setting where investigators present new and developing research ideas and receive feedback from potential collaborators and multidisciplinary experts in clinical research methods. For more information, please see



January 31, 2020 - Preliminary proposals due, see below for format.

February 21, 2020 - Applicants are notified whether to proceed with a full proposal. 

May 1, 2020 – Full proposals due, see below for format.

June 1, 2020 – Notification of awards.  

July 1, 2020 - Anticipated earliest start date.  The PIs can decide on a start date between July 1 and October 1.  Awards are for one year, however a no-cost extension can be requested by submitting a timeline, budget forecast, and rationale to Department Chair and Faculty Coordinator.

Note: All human subject protocols must have received RSRB approval prior to funding. No funds will be released until these approvals have been documented.

Format for Proposal Submission:

The Preliminary Application must contain:

  1. Title of the project
  2. Investigators, with clear identification of PI and full contact information.
  3. One page abstract describing the goals and objectives of the proposed project, and the larger research goals for which the proposed pilot will provide preliminary data.
  4. Relevance to the mission of the PHS and the pilot program.


The Full Proposal must contain the following information:

  1. Abstract
  2. Budget Page and budget justification
  3. Specific Aims (no more than 1 page)
  4. Research Plan (no more than 4 pages)
    1. Significance/Background of the proposal.
    2. Relevance of the proposal to the mission of PHS and pilot program.
    3. Plan for post-pilot funding strategy, i.e. the larger research goals for which the proposed pilot will provide preliminary data.
    4. Research approach including potential problems and alternatives.
  5. The Specific Aims and Research Plan should be written in Times New Roman or Arial font size 11, and pages should have ½ inch margins. Figures and tables can have smaller font size but should be legible.
  6. Bibliography (no page limit, but please use 40 or fewer references)
  7. Plan to seek ethical approval.
  8. Biosketches of the PI (or MPIs) and co-investigators in NIH format.
  9. Attestation of no other funding for same project.


No appendices or letters of support will be allowed; all figures and tables must be contained within the Research Plan section of the proposal. In addition, a detailed budget in NIH format is required. Revised versions of previously submitted applications that have not been funded may be resubmitted once. Revised applications may include a 1-page maximum introductory statement responding to prior concerns.

Submission: Proposals must be submitted electronically by email to Jeananne Thomas at

Condition of Award: All awardees are required to present their findings at one of the monthly PHS faculty meetings and are encouraged to present at a Public Health Grand Rounds near the end or shortly after the pilot project expires.

Contacts: If you have questions regarding this RFP, please contact:

David Rich, ScD, Associate Professor

Department of Public Health Sciences

Tel: 585-276-4119


Previously Awarded Pilots





Development and Testing of a Hospital Readmissions Risk Calculator for Older Adults Receiving Maintenance Dialysis

Fahad Saeed (Nephrology)

Yue Li (PHS), Helena Temkin-Greener (PHS)

Assessing Subjective and Objective Parameters of Sleep and Dreaming in the Deaf Community

Wilfred Pigeon (Psychiatry)

Scott McIntosh (PHS), Michelle Carr (Swanson University)

Development and Evaluation of An Automated Characterization Profile of Patients Reporting to the Emergency Department With Opioid Use Disorder

Mechelle Sanders (Fam Med)

Kevin Fiscella (Fam Med), Peter Veazie (PHS)






The Health Eye Project



Addressing Dental & Psychiatric Comorbidities in HIV/AIDS Patients








Familial Hypercholesterolemia: Improving Health Via Songwriting


McIntosh; Williams

Investigating the role of the AhR in the Pathogenesis of UVR sin sensitivity in Lupus patients


DeLouise; Anolik