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National Institutes of Health Early Career Funding Opportunities


Please review the policies for New and Early Stage Investigators, including the NIH definition of new investigator. 


NIBIB Trailblazer Award for New and Early Stage Investigators (R21)- PAR-16-390

  • Deadline
    • February 16th, June 16th, October 16th (Standard Due Dates)
  • Who is eligible to apply?
    • This FOA targets investigators at the early stage of their independent research careers, and investigators integrating engineering and physical sciences with the life sciences who have not received prior NIH funding.
  • What is the budget and duration?
    • ​$400,000 in direct costs over 3 years
  • Additional Notes
    • This opportunity is for New and Early Stage Investigators to pursue research programs of high interest to the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB)​ that integrate engineering and the physical sciences with the life and behavioral sciences.  
    • A Trailblazer project may be exploratory, developmental, proof of concept, or high risk-high impact, and may be technology design-directed, discovery-driven, or hypothesis-driven. Importantly, applicants are expected to propose research approaches for which there are minimal or no preliminary data.

NIDCD Early Career Research (ECR) Award (R21) - PAR-16-057

  • Deadline
    • February 28, 2017, June 27, 2017, October 26, 2017 by 5:00pm
    • February 27, 2018, June 26, 2018, October 26, 2018 by 5:00pm 
  • Who is eligible to apply?
    • The PD/PI must be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident or valid U.S. visa holder. 
    • The PD/PI must be no more than 7 years beyond the date that the first professional, advanced professional, or terminal academic degree was awarded, whichever is most recent. 
    • Formal years of clinical training (Internship, Residency, and Fellowship) are not counted as part of the 7 year limit.
    • The PD/PI may be an independent early stage investigator or a late-stage postdoctoral fellow still in his/her mentor's laboratory.
  • What is the budget and duration?
    • $100,000/year in direct costs for 3 years
    • At a minimum, the PD/PI is expected to commit 25% effort (i.e. 3 person-months based on a 12 month calendar) to the project.
  • Additional Notes
    • The research must be focused on one or more of the areas within the biomedical and behavioral scientific mission of the NIDCD: hearing, balance, smell, taste, voice, speech, or language.
    • The National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD) ECR Award R21 grant is a mechanism supporting investigation of novel scientific ideas or new model systems, tools, or technologies that have the potential for significant impact on biomedical or biobehavioral research.

NCMRR Early Career Research Award (R03) - PAR-17-161

  • Deadline - April 21, 2017, March 30, 2018, March 29, 2019, by 5:00 PM
  • Who is eligible to apply?
    • Clinical and basic scientists who are in the early stages of their independent faculty-level career in rehabilitation research, not a postdoctoral fellow still in his/her mentor's laboratory.
    • PD(s)/PI(s) must be no more than 7 years beyond the date that the first professional, advanced professional, or terminal academic degree was awarded, whichever is most recent.
      • The last application due date, not the application submission date, that falls within the 7 year eligibility period will be the last date an application may be submitted.
      • Formal years of clinical training (Internship, Residency, and Fellowship) are not counted as part of the 7 year limit.
    • Individuals who have served as PD/PI on any NIH research grant (including an R01, R03, R15, R21, SBIR/STTR, subprojects of program project or center grants) or any other federally-funded research grant (e.g., NSF, DOE, VA) are NOT eligible for the NCMRR ECR Award Grant Program. ​
    • Former recipients of Federally-funded National Research Service Award fellowships and traineeships (i.e. F- and T- series awards) or mentored career development awards (i.e. K awards) are eligible for the NCMRR ECR Award grant program. Recipients of the K99/R00 award are not eligible to apply for the NCMRR ECR Award (R03).
  • What is the budget and duration?
    • May not exceed $200,000 ($100,000/yr) in direct costs over 2 years
  • Additional Notes
    • Questions regarding eligibility should be addressed prior to beginning to prepare the application by contacting the Scientific/Research contact listed in Section VII. Agency Contacts.
    • The research should be focused on one or more of the areas within the biomedical and behavioral mission of NCMRR.
    • The expected outcome from projects funded under this mechanism is the acquisition of necessary preliminary data for a subsequent research project grant (R01) application.  

NIH Pathway to Independence Award (Parent K99/R00) - PA-16-193

  • Deadline - February 12th, June 12th, October 12th (Standard Due Dates)
  • Who is eligible to apply?
    • Applicants must have no more than 4 years of postdoctoral research experience at the time of the initial or the subsequent resubmission or revision application.
    • Candidates are required to commit a minimum of 75% of full-time professional effort (9 person-months) during the mentored phase. 
    • Individuals must be in mentored, postdoctoral training positions. 
    • The K99/R00 award is intended for individuals with significant research experience, but who require at least 12 months of mentored research training and career development (K99 phase) before transitioning to the R00 award phase of the program.
    • Strongest applicants are required to propose, a well-conceived plan for 1-2 years of substantive mentored research training and career development that will help them become competitive candidates for tenure-track faculty positions and prepare them to launch robust, independent research programs.
  • What is the budget and duration?
    • The K99/R00 award will provide up to 5 years of support in two phases.
    • The initial (K99) phase will provide support for up to 2 years of mentored postdoctoral research training and career development.
    • The second (R00) phase will provide up to 3 years of independent research support, which is contingent on satisfactory progress during the K99 phase and an approved, independent, tenure-track (or equivalent) faculty position. The two award phases are intended to be continuous in time. Therefore, although exceptions may be possible in limited circumstances, R00 awards will generally only be made to those K99 PDs/PIs who accept independent, tenure-track (or equivalent) faculty positions by the end of the K99 award period.
    • Salary and research costs for the mentored phase (K99)may be requested to the level provided by the funding Center or Institute found HERE
    • The total cost for the independent phase (R00) may not exceed $249,000 per year.
    • For the extramural K99 phase, Indirect Costs are reimbursed at 8% of modified total direct costs.
    • For the R00 phase, indirect costs will be reimbursed at the extramural sponsoring institution indirect cost rate. Check current UNM rates HERE
  • Additional Notes
    • The objective of the NIH Pathway to Independence Award (K99/R00) is to help outstanding postdoctoral researchers with a research and/or clinical doctorate degree complete needed, mentored career develoment and transition in a timely manner to independent, tenure-track or equivalent faculty positions. The K99/R00 award is intended to foster the development of a creative, independent research program that will be competitive for subsequent independent funding and that will help advance the mission of the NIH.
    • An individual who cannot provide a compelling rationale for at least one year of additional mentored research training at the time of award is not a strong candidate for this award.
    • If an applicant achieves independence (any faculty or non-mentored research position) before a K99 award is made, neither the K99, nor the R00 award, will be made.
    • An intramural K99 is one being conducted within an NIH Institute/Center intramural laboratory while an external K99 is one being conducted within a university or other laboratory outside of the NIH.
    • Multiple PDs/PIs are not allowed.
    • There is no citizenship requirement for K99 applicants.

AHRQ Mentored Research Scientist Research Career Development Award (K01) - PA-16-223

  • Deadline
    • February 12th, June 12th, October 12th (Standard Due Dates)
  • Who is eligible to apply?
    • U.S. citizen or permanent resident by the time of the award
    • PD/PIs who have been awarded grants exceeding $100,000/year in direct costs are not eligible. 
    • Candidates are required to commit a minimum of 75% of full-time professional effort (i.e., a minimum of 9 person-months) to their career development and research training during the mentored phase.
  • What is the budget and duration?
    • Award budgets are composed of salary and other program-related expenses, as described below.
    • The total project period may not exceed 5 years.
  • Addtional Notes
    • The primary purpose of the Agency for Health Care Research and Quality (AHRQ) Mentored Research Scientist Research Career Development Awards (K01) program is to prepare qualified individuals for careers that have a significant impact on the quality, safety, efficiency, equity, and effectiveness of health care for all Americans. 

Mentored Research Scientist Development Award (Parent K01) - PA-16-190

  • Deadline- February 12th, June 12th, October 12th (Standard Due Dates)
  • Who is eligible to apply?
    • Candidates must have a PhD or MD and be positioned in their career to participate in a mentorship for 3-5 years.
    • At the time of award, the candidate must have a full-time appointment at the applying academic institution.
    • By the time of award, the PI must be a citizen,non-citizen national of the United States, or have been lawfully admitted for permanent residence.
    • Current and former PDs/PIs on NIH research project (R01), program project (P01), center grants (P50), sub-projects of program project (P01), sub-projects of center grants (P50), other career development awards (K-awards), or the equivalent are not eligible. 
    • Current and former PDs/PIs of an NIH Small Grant (R03), Exploratory/Developmental Grant (R21), Dissertation Award (R36), or SBIR/STTR (R41, R42, R43, R44) remain eligible.
  • What is the budget and duration?
    • Salary and research costs for the project may be requested to the level provided by the funding Center or Institute found HERE
    • Indirect Costs are reimbursed at 8% of modified total direct costs.
    • This is a 3-5 year mentored research program.
  • Additional Notes
    • The expectation is that, through this sustained period of research career development and training, awardees will launch independent research careers in biomedical, behavioral or clinical sciences and become competitive for new research project grant (e.g., R01) funding.
    • Although all of the participating NIH Institutes and Centers (ICs) use this mechanism to support career development experiences that lead to research independence, some ICs use the K01 award for individuals who propose to train in a new field or for individuals who have had a hiatus in their research career because of illness or pressing family circumstances. Other ICs utilize the K01 award to increase research workforce diversity by providing enhanced research career development opportunities.
    • PIs can only have one K01 pending at a time.
    • Multiple PDs/PIs are not allowed.

Independent Scientist Award (Parent K02) - PA-16-192

  • Deadline - February 12th, June 12th, October 12th (Standard Due Dates)
  • Who is eligible to apply?
    • Candidates must hold a doctoral degree, independent peer reviewed research support at the time the award is made, and commit a minimum of 9 person-months (75%) per year conducting research and relevant career development activities
    • By the time of award, the individual must be a citizen or a non-citizen national of the United States or have been lawfully admitted for permanent residence
    • At the time of award, the candidate must have a full-time appointment at the academic institution.
  • What is the budget and duration?
    • Salary and research costs for the project may be requested to the level provided by the funding Center or Institute found HERE
    • Indirect Costs are reimbursed at 8% of modified total direct costs.
    • 3-5 years of salary support and "protected time" for newly independent, non-mentored,scientists
  • Additional Notes
    • Multiple PDs/PIs are not allowed.
    • PIs can only have one K02 pending at a time.
    • The applicant institution must have a strong, well-established record of research and career development activities and faculty qualified in biomedical, behavioral, or clinical research to collaborate with the applicant.

Cancer Prevention, Control, Behavioral Sciences, and Population Sciences Career Development Award (K07) - PA-16-284

  • Deadline - February 12th, June 12th, October 12th (Standard Due Dates)
  • Who is eligible to apply?
    • Junior investigators with research or health professional doctoral degrees who want to become cancer-focused academic researchers in cancer prevention, cancer control, or the behavioral or population sciences.
    • Candidates must have no more than 8 years of research experience after the terminal doctoral degree at the time of the initial or the subsequent resubmission application; clinical training is not included within this 8-year limit.
    • At the time of award, the candidate must have a “full-time” appointment at the academic institution.
    • Candidates are required to commit a minimum of 9 person-months (75%) of full-time professional effort to their career development and research training during the mentored phase.
  • What is the budget and duration?
    • NCI will contribute up to $ 100,000 per year toward the salary of the career award recipient.
    • NCI will contribute $30,000 per year toward the research development costs of the award recipient
    • Up to 5 years of funding
    • Indirect Costs are reimbursed at 8% of modified total direct costs.
  • Additional Notes
    • The candidate must identify a mentor who will supervise the proposed career development and research experience.
    • Research, teaching, and leadership skills are to be learned during the tenure of the award.
    • Curriculum building skills are encouraged.
    • The expectation is that, through this sustained period of research career development and training under the guidance of an experienced mentor in the biomedical, behavioral, or clinical sciences, awardees will launch fully independent research careers and become competitive for new research project grant (e.g., R01) funding.

Mentored Clinical Scientist Research Career Development Award (Parent K08) - PA-16-191

  • Deadline - February 12th, June 12th, October 12th (Standard Due Dates)
  • Who is eligible to apply?

    • At the time of award, the candidate must have a “full-time” appointment at the academic institution.
    • Candidates are required to commit a minimum of 75% of full-time professional effort (i.e., a minimum of 9 person-months) to their career development and research training during the mentored phase.
    • By the time of award, the individual must be a citizen or a non-citizen national of the United States or have been lawfully admitted for permanent residence
  • What is the budget and duration?
    • Salary and research costs for the project may be requested to the level provided by the funding Center or Institute found HERE
    • Indirect Costs are reimbursed at 8% of modified total direct costs.
    • 3-5 years of salary support and "protected time" to support didactic study and/or mentored research for individuals with clinical doctoral degrees
  • Additional Notes
    • Multiple PDs/PIs are not allowed.
    • PIs can only have one K08 pending at a time.
    • Before submitting the application, the candidate must identify a mentor who will supervise the proposed career development and research experience.

Mentored Quantitative Research Development Award (Parent K25) - PA-16-194

  • Deadline - February 12th, June 12th, October 12th (Standard Due Dates)
  • Who is eligible to apply?​​
    • By the time of award, the individual must be a citizen or a non-citizen national of the United States or have been lawfully admitted for permanent residence.
    • Current and former PDs/PIs on NIH research project (R01), program project (P01), center grants (P50), sub-projects of program project (P01), sub-projects of center grants (P50), other career development awards (K–awards), or the equivalent are not eligible.
    • Current and former PDs/PIs of an NIH Small Grant (R03), Exploratory/Developmental Grant (R21), Dissertation Award (R36), or SBIR/STTR (R41, R42, R43, R44) remain eligible.
    • Candidates must have an advanced degree in a quantitative area of science or engineering (MSEE, PhD, DSc, etc.) and have demonstrated research interests in their primary quantitative discipline.
    • The candidate should have demonstrated experience or interest in pursuing research (including research outside of biomedicine, behavioral sciences, bioimaging, or bioengineering).
    • PIs can be from the postdoctoral level all the way to senior faculty level, who have shown clear evidence of productivity and research excellence in the field of their training, and who would like to expand their research capability, with the goal of making significant contributions to behavioral, biomedical (basic or clinical), bioimaging or bioengineering research that is relevant to the NIH mission.
    • At the time of award, the candidate must have a full-time appointment at the academic institution.
    • Candidates are required to commit a minimum of 75% of full-time professional effort (i.e., a minimum of 9 person-months) to their career development and research training during the mentored phase.
  • What is the budget and duration?
    • Salary and research costs for the project may be requested to the level provided by the funding Center or Institute found HERE.
    • Projects may not exceed 5 years. 
    • Indirect Costs are reimbursed at 8% of modified total direct costs.
  • Additional Notes
    • The specific objectives of the K25 award are to:
      • Encourage research-oriented quantitative scientists and engineers with little or no experience in biomedicine, bioengineering, bioimaging, or behavioral research to gain fundamental knowledge in these areas and develop relevant research skills, and to gain experience in current concepts, advanced methods, and experimental approaches that will allow them to conduct basic or clinical biomedical, behavioral, bioimaging, or bioengineering research, and to become independent investigators or play leading roles in multi-disciplinary research teams.
      • Increase the pool of quantitative researchers who can conduct biomedical, behavioral, or bioengineering studies, capitalizing on the quantitative backgrounds of these investigators to inform new directions in biomedical, behavior and bioengineering research.
      • Provide a unique opportunity for candidates holding degrees in quantitative science or engineering to embark on three to five years of special study, including course work, seminars, meetings, and mentored research, to achieve the career enhancement goals outlined above. 
    • All programs should be carefully tailored to meet the individual needs of the candidate and must include (an) active mentor(s) who is (are) competent and willing to provide the appropriate research guidance.

NIH Director's New Innovator Award Program (DP2) - RFA-RM-16-004

  • Deadline - September 9, 2016
  • Who is eligible to apply?
    • Applicants must meet the definition of an Early Stage Investigator (ESI). An ESI is a new investigator (defined as a PD/PI who has not competed successfully for a significant NIH independent research award) who is within 10 years of completing his/her terminal research degree.
    • Applicants also must hold an independent research position at a domestic (U.S.) institution as of September 1, 2017.
    • Awardees are required to devote a minimum of 25% effort to the project each year
  • What is the budget and duration?
    • Awards will be up to $1,500,000 in direct costs (the equivalent of $300,000 in Direct Costs each year for five years) plus applicable Facilities and Administrative (F&A) costs to be determined at the time of award.
  • Additional Notes
    • Applicants may submit or have an R01 (or other equivalent) grant application pending concurrently with their NIH Director’s New Innovator Award application. However, if that pending grant is awarded prior to the NIH Director’s New Innovator Award, then the applicant is no longer eligible to receive the New Innovator Award.
    • The research proposed for a NIH Director's New Innovator Award may be in any scientific area relevant to the mission of NIH (biological, behavioral, clinical, social, physical, chemical, computational, engineering, and mathematical sciences).