Funding brief: The U.S. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine invites applications for ‘Partnerships for Enhanced Engagement in Research (PEER) program’ for scientists in developing countries to apply for funds to support research and capacity-building activities on topics of importance to USAID and conducted in partnership with U.S. Government (USG)-funded and selected private sector partners.
The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) is the U.S. Government’s preeminent foreign assistance agency. The agency is dedicated to helping nations meet the needs of their citizens by providing health-care, education, and economic opportunity to end extreme poverty and promote democratic, resilient societies. The U.S. Global Development Lab (The Lab) at USAID is bringing together a diverse set of partners to discover, test, and scale breakthrough solutions to address critical challenges in international development. A key element of this strategy is the support of scientific and technological research through the Partnerships for Enhanced Engagement in Research (PEER) program. PEER is a competitive awards program that invites scientists in developing countries to apply for funds to support research and capacity-building activities on topics of importance to USAID and conducted in partnership with U.S. Government (USG)-funded and selected private sector partners. The program is supported by USAID but implemented by the U.S. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (referred to as the National Academies).
Through PEER, the Lab leverages investments by other USG-supported agencies and private sector companies in scientific research and training in order to enhance the development priorities of USAID. USG-funded partners must be investigators who will contribute to the scientific merit and impact of PEER projects through expertise, skills, methodologies, laboratory access, and synergies with ongoing projects.
The PEER program extends its reach across the U.S. science community to include the following partner agencies: NASA, NIH, NOAA, NSF, USDA Agricultural Research Service, USDA Forest Service, USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, USGS, and the Smithsonian Institution. This exciting opportunity expands the scope of research supported under PEER and creates more opportunities for cross-disciplinary and multi-sectoral research collaborations
Pre-Proposal Review Criteria: The pre-proposal review process will be managed by the National Academies. Pre-proposals will be evaluated by USAID and the National Academies based on the following criteria:
PEER applicant compliance with eligibility requirements
Participation of USG-supported partner, including verification of active research award or eligibility status
Alignment with research priorities outlined in corresponding “Focus Areas” section
Development impact of proposed research
If a prior PEER awardee, applicant must demonstrate how the proposed work is distinct from their prior PEER award and /or how the proposed work significantly builds off the previous PEER award to achieve broader development impact
Donor Name: U.S. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine
Funding name: Partnerships for Enhanced Engagement in Research (PEER) program
Deadline: PEER proposal submission now has two phases:
● Phase 1: A brief pre-proposal is required for all applicants. The deadline for submission of pre-proposals is January, 14th, 2019. Details for pre-proposal submission are provided below.
● Phase 2: If invited to submit a full proposal, applicants will be notified by the National Academies around February, 25th, 2019. The deadline for submission of full proposals is April 12th, 2019.
Funding details link: Click to view
Funding limit: Projects are anticipated to run for one year and range in size from $30,000 to $80,000 (USD) (except for projects under the Peru / Strengthening Natural Resource Management in Peru focus area, which can be up to $100,000), regardless of whether they will support a single institutions or multiple institutions.
Special Notes: Please contact with the donor directly for further clarification and understanding.
Project start date: Not found
Project duration: In preparing their project proposals, applicants should plan for a duration of one year. Although, there is a possibility that no-cost extensions may be made for a maximum of six months, all projects funded during this cycle will need to be completed by April, 30th, 2021.
Eligible organization: As below
PEER Applicant Eligibility:
● Applicants who submit pre-proposals to PEER must be based at an academic institution, non-profit organization, or government-managed research laboratory, center, or institute in a PEER-eligible country. (For Pakistan only, applicants can only be based at an NGO. Researchers based at Pakistani universities and government-managed research institutes are not eligible.)
● PEER applicants must hold a career-track position or equivalent at their respective institution or organization. Applicants should be living and working in the country from which they are applying and should be nationals (citizens or permanent residents) of the PEER-eligible country for the focus area to which they are applying.
● Researchers from non-eligible countries and employees of for-profit firms in PEER-eligible countries may participate in projects using their own resources but are not permitted to serve as PIs, as PEER awards will not be issued to such organizations. All institutions will be vetted to determine compliance with USAID policies for receipt of funds. PEER awards will be issued to institutions or organizations, not to individuals. Female applicants are encouraged to apply.
● PIs of currently active PEER awards are not eligible to apply to serve as PIs or co-PIs in future cycles of PEER until their first funded project has been successfully completed. For the current cycle of the program (Cycle 8), this successful completion date must be prior to September 1, 2019.
● Prior PEER awardees who re-apply for PEER funding must justify how their proposal is distinct from their prior PEER award and/or how the proposed work builds on previous PEER work to address new research questions.
PEER Applicant Eligibility Summary
● National or resident of a PEER-eligible country
● Meets country-specific eligibility criteria for focus area to which applying
● Affiliated with and permanently based at an academic institution, non-profit organization, government-managed research laboratory, or relevant government ministry in a PEER-eligible country (learn more about eligible countries by visiting each focus area)
USG-Supported Partner Eligibility: PEER applicants are required to partner with a U.S. Government (USG)-supported researcher from one of the following agencies:
● Agricultural Research Service (ARS)
● National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)
● National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA)
● National Institutes of Health (NIH)
● National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
● National Science Foundation (NSF)
● Smithsonian Institution
● United States Forest Service (USFS)
● United States Geological Survey (USGS)
USG-supported partners may either be intramural researchers (employees of one of the listed agencies) or serve as a principal investigator or co-principal investigator of an active USG-funded research award. The role of the USG-supported partner is to provide complementary expertise and skills to the PEER project, but the USG-supported partner’s research experience does not need to directly overlap. While partnerships are generally based on topical or disciplinary similarities, many PEER partnerships also provide access to specific methodologies or instrumentation otherwise unavailable to the PEER applicant. Proposals should demonstrate the benefits of the PEER research partnership to the USG-supported partner as well as the PEER PI.
PEER pre-proposals are not accepted from U.S.-based researchers.
Eligible Country: The PEER program is accepting research proposals in the following focus areas. PEER-eligible countries are listed on the linked pages for each focus area, and applicants should review eligible country criteria carefully before applying. Applications are being accepted only for projects within the scope of one of the focus areas listed below.
Multi-Country Focus Area Calls
● Multiple Countries / Last Mile Awards
● Multiple Countries / Family Planning and Reproductive Health
Regional or Country-Specific Calls
● Multiple Countries / Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene in North Africa
● Iraq / Water Research and Conservation to Keep People Healthy and Increase Employment
● Peru / Strengthening Natural Resource Management in Peru
● Tunisia / Economic Growth, ICT, and Small and Medium Enterprises
● PEER pre-proposals are not accepted from U.S.-based researchers.
Submission mail: Not found
How to apply: Applicants are required to complete the pre-proposal form through the PEER online system, completed in English. Paper and e-mail submissions are not accepted.
a. A brief CV of no more than two pages for the PEER applicant. Please use this standard format for CVs (DOC). The CV should provide citations for no more than 5-10 recent and relevant publications.
b. A brief letter of support written by the USG-supported partner explaining his or her intention to collaborate on the proposed PEER project and how the PEER partnership will contribute to the partner’s USG-supported research. The letter should also include the partner’s USG-funded award title, number, funding agency, program officer and contact information for his or her active USG award.
c. A brief letter of support from the additional project participant (social scientist, economist, communications specialist, or other expert from a field different from the PI’s own), indicating interest and describing his or her planned role and responsibilities.
d. An expression of interest from a government official, international organization, NGO, industry official, community leader, or other stakeholder describing their need or demand that would be addressed by the proposed project (optional but strongly suggested for all proposals)
e. A statement from the Institutional Review Board with authority over the project, confirming that the board has a Federal Wide Assurance and has approved the project work plan (required only for projects involving human research subjects or the use of personally identifiable medical data)
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