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University of Wisconsin–Madison

Research Core Revitalization Program

About the Initiative:

The Research Core Revitalization Program is a pilot program to strengthen campus research core capacities by supporting the upgrade, replacement, or duplication of heavily used shared research resources. Shared instruments, equipment, and other resources play a critical role in the research enterprise and typically have a limited lifespan. Although essential and highly used, these critical resources may not be eligible or competitive for federal and other external grant programs targeting new capabilities and technologies. Researchers across campus depend on the shared workhorse resources managed by cores, and reinvestment in these capabilities ensures continuity and productivity.

Proposals for one-time investments in upgrade, replacement or duplication must be made by at least one lead Principal Investigator (PI) associated with a research core facility or program in any division. Academic staff and Clinical Health Science (CHS) faculty are invited as co-investigators and collaborative proposals are encouraged. An investigators can be a lead PI on only one proposal but co-PIs may participate in more than one proposal.

Funds may be requested for upgrading, replacing, or duplicating instruments, equipment, or other shared resources. Building infrastructure improvements, including remodeling or renovation of physical structures, are not allowable under this program. Continuing or operating costs (including staff labor) also are not allowable under this program. Cost sharing by the core, unit, department or college is expected.

The Research Core Revitalization Program is supported by an investment from the OVCRGE and with support from the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF). Each award will be in the range of $50,000 – $300,000 for direct costs.

Deadlines and key dates:

Applications are due no later than Friday, February 21, 2020 at 4:30pm. Award notifications will be sent in June 2020 with funding to begin on July 1, 2020. (The standard duration of the grant is from July 1, 2020 – June 30, 2021.) Award recipients will be asked to complete a brief report at the end of the grant period and for the first two years following the award period (2021-2022, and 2022-2023).

Eligibility:

  • A proposal must be submitted by a faculty Principal Investigator.
  • The lead PI must be a tenured or tenure-track UW—Madison faculty member, or a researcher with permanent PI status. The lead PI should be associated with the core as a user, leader, or subject expert. An investigator can be a lead PI on only one proposal.
  • Co-PIs can be tenured or tenure-track UW—Madison faculty member, a Clinical Health Science faculty member, a researcher with permanent PI status, or an academic staff member. Co-PIs should have subject expertise and a leadership role in the core. A Co-PI may participate in more than one proposal.

Requirements:

  • Part of a core: the instrument, equipment, or resource must be housed and operated on the UW—Madison campus as part of a campus research core and listed in the Research Core Directory online database. Research Core Directory http://resources.research.wisc.edu/

Cores may apply for inclusion in the Research Core Directory by contacting Isabelle Girard, Director, Office of Campus Research Cores isabelle.girard@wisc.edu.

  • High usage: evidence of high usage over a meaningful time period through reservation records, service requests or other appropriate logs must be provided.
  • Wide user base: evidence of a wide and strong user base, representing multiple departments or colleges, should be included.
  • Integral to grants: the role of the resource in supporting ongoing grant-funded work should be highlighted.
  • Broad access: the research core should demonstrate broad accessibility to campus researchers.
  • Strong investment: a record of strong and continuing investment in the core and resources should be provided.
  • Sustainable plan: the core should provide a plan to ensure the sustainable, efficient operation of the resource within a fiscally sound framework that includes appropriate user fees.
  • Statements of support: the application should be supported by statements from key researchers, with a commitment for matching funds from the core director, department chair, and/or college or school dean.

Application Instructions:

Please apply electronically through the online application hosted by the Office of the Vice Chancellor of Research and Graduate Education at https://vcrge-uwmadison.smapply.io. You may log in using your UW—Madison NET-ID and password. Select the “Research Core Revitalization Program” program tile. Click “Apply” to start a new application.

Some Key Tips:

  • Any member of the project team or administrative staff may complete the application.
  • You can also invite additional “collaborators” (writers/editors) to fill out the application form. However, the person who starts an application must also be the person that ultimately submits the application.
  • The on-line form will ask for you to supply information on the items outlined below as “Key Tasks.”
  • Remember to scroll down to select “mark as complete” at the bottom of each completed page.
  • Your list of tasks to be completed will be located on the left-hand portion of the screen. You may need to scroll down to see all of them. Also, for editing each page, go to the three dots at the top right-hand portion of your screen.
  • When creating and uploading documents, please use Arial 11 pt. font wherever possible.
  • You will be able to select “review and submit” before final submission.
  • You will also have the option of downloading the entire application document.

Key Tasks:

1. Provide descriptive title. Provide a short title that includes the shared resource and purpose (e.g. Replacement for Workhorse Scanning Electron Microscope for Nanoscale Imaging). Provide Information on Lead Principal Investigator (PI) and Co-Principal Investigator.

2. Describe the skills, knowledge and expertise of the applicants to support the shared resource and users. Upload one PDF that contains a short biosketch or CV for the principal investigator and co-PI.

  • Lead PI: A tenured or tenure-track UW—Madison faculty member, or a researcher with permanent PI status. The lead PI should be associated with the core as a user, leader, or subject expert. An investigator can be a lead PI on only one proposal.
  • Co-PI: (Optional) A tenured or tenure-track UW—Madison faculty member, a Clinical Health Science faculty member, a researcher with permanent PI status, or an academic staff member. The Co-PI should have subject expertise and a leadership role in the core. A Co-PI may participate in more than one proposal.
  • In the drop-down menu for department, if the exact UDDS code you want does not appear as a choice, please select the closest general administrative unit.

 

Provide a List of Co-Investigators (optional). List up to four additional faculty members or academic staff who will participate on the project (a maximum total of six team members)

3. Describe the Core. Please describe in one or two paragraphs the research mission of the core and summarize its capabilities and services.

4. Provide Funding Request Details. Please provide details of the requested resource, the type of support requested (upgrade, replacement or duplication), and total funding request. The request can be for a small number of related instrumentation or shared resources and is not limited to a single item. Continuing or operating costs (including staff labor) are not allowable under this program. Cost sharing by the core, unit, department or college is expected. Each award will be in the range of $50,000 – $300,000 for direct costs.

5. Provide a Justification. Upload as one PDF a justification for the requested resource(s) that is no more than one page in length and written for a general audience, incorporating accessible and non-technical language whenever possible. Include alternative mechanisms for obtaining these resources if this proposal is not funded.

6. Upload Usage and User Data for the Relevant Resource. Please upload as one PDF a record of resource usage or utilization for a meaningful time frame (previous year or years). Explain usage in terms of practical capacity or limits. Include a summary of current resource users, affiliation, and intensity of use for a meaningful time period (previous months or year). Note any anticipated changes (e.g. new faculty member or pending grant award).

7. Highlight Support of Funded Projects. Please upload a PDF of no more than 3 pages a description of the need to support major and minor users with this shared resource. In up to 5 examples, highlight the role of the resource in advancing the work of extramurally funded projects.

8. Outline Core Administration. Please upload a PDF of no more than 2 pages, a description of the administrative and operational structure of the core and the resource. Outline the staffing and major responsibilities of core personnel. Note what administrative support is provided at the unit, department, or college level. Describe the structure and membership of the local advisory committee and the short-term (one year) and long-term (2 – 5 years) goals or priorities for the core.

9. Upload a Financial Plan. Please upload a PDF of no more than 3 pages that describes the financial model to support this resource. Demonstrate the sustainability of the shared resource in a financial plan that provides for the long-term operation and maintenance. Outline the costs associated with routine operation and maintenance and costs for any support personnel. Explain how ongoing operational costs will be met. The financial plan should include a detailed calculation of expenses and income sufficient to support the resource, and may include separate calculations for short-term (≥ 1-2 years) and longer-term (≥ 3-5 years) sustainability.

10. Upload Letters of Support. Please upload a single PDF that contains up to 5 letters of support from key researchers. In addition, include letters of commitment for matching funds from the core director, center director, department chair, and/or college or school dean.

Submitting the application:

You will be able to select “review and submit” before making your final submission. Please make sure to review the entire document before you select to “submit” it. You will also have the option to download the entire document.

General and technical questions should be sent to: competitions@research.wisc.edu

Questions concerning proposal development should be sent to:

Cynthia Czajkowski, Associate Vice Chancellor for Research – Biological Sciences cmczajko@wisc.edu

Isabelle Girard, Director, Office of Campus Research Cores isabelle.girard@wisc.edu