Applying for US funding
If you would like to apply for US funding, please ensure that you are eligible to apply and contact Grants Office as early as possible. Grants Office must receive several internal forms before your application can be submitted: the Application Assurance, Principal Investigator (PI) Assurance, Financial Conflict of Interest (FCOI) and Effort forms are mandatory for all applications. Additional information regarding the budget and scope of work is also needed. To guide you through the application process, we have compiled the following checklists:
- NIH Prime application
- NIH Subaward application
- CDMRP/DoD application
- Foundation/non-profit application
KI internal deadlines
For planning reasons, you must inform Grants Office of your intention to apply for US funding at least four weeks (Prime application) or two weeks (Subaward application) before the application deadline. Furthermore, Grants Office must receive your completed Application Package at least five working days before the application deadline.
Timeline for notifying Grants Office when applying for US funding:
|6 weeks||4 weeks||2 weeks||5 working days|
|Notify Grants Office about your intention to submit an application||Request advice on your application if KI is serving as the Prime applicant|| |
Request advice on your application if KI is applying as a Sub-awardee
Request all necessary signatures
Clearance by the administrative manager (AC) and the head of department (prefekt) is compulsory. When applicable, signatures from the Principal Investigator, AC, and prefekt must be obtained before Grants Office can sign off on your application. Furthermore, the agreements must be reviewed by Grants Office or legal counsel before Grants Office can sign.
Preparing to apply
US federal applications
Cofinancing of NIH funding
NIH has agreed to an 8% facilities and administration cost (F&A) for all foreign grants. This means that the responsibility is on the department (institution) to meet the shortfall in the project. It is therefore essential that the Head of the Department (prefekt) and the Chief Administrator (administrative chef) are aware of, have seen, and agreed to support funding applications from their researchers to the NIH.
electronic Research Administration (eRA) Commons registration
Any individual designated as PI in the application must also be registered in the electronic Research Administration (eRA) Commons. This registration must be performed by an authorized organizational representative. To establish an account, contact firstname.lastname@example.org at least two weeks prior to the submission date for any submission via Grants.gov. The PI is responsible for ensuring that the information in eRA Commons is correct and up to date.
Please note that your eRA Commons account will stay with you throughout your career. The same account can be affiliated with multiple institutions. You (the PI) are responsible for maintaining your account information.
Funding Opportunity Announcements (FOA)
Every application to the NIH must be submitted in response to a Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA). The package downloaded from the actual FOA must be used. Parent FOAs are issued for investigator-initiated (unsolicited) applications.
Application Information and Application Guide
NIH requires that applicants use the Standard Form (SF) 424 Research & Related (R&R) family of forms when applying for NIH grants.
Please see the NIH application guide which outlines important information you will be required to provide in your NIH application. This includes registration numbers, information regarding the Authorized Organizational Representative and general information required for completing the SF424 application package.
Funding Opportunity Announcements (FOAs) may include instructions specific to the grant program or specific opportunity. The instructions in FOAs supersede the instructions in the application guide. It is the responsibility of the PI to ensure that all application guidelines, including those in the FOA, have been followed.
NIH Application Review
To create a successful grant application to the NIH, it is important to become familiar with the NIH peer review criteria.
When you send your application to the NIH, NIH staff will assign your proposal to a review group. In your cover letter, you can also recommend a particular IRG or study section in the CSR and an IC to review your proposal. Keywords in the title is another way of helping the NIH staff in assigning your proposal to the proper Institute.
The five review criteria for most NIH grant applications are:
Innovation is not necessary but the results should have compelling significance.
The financial planning is an important part of the NIH application.
NIH has agreed to an 8% facilities and administration cost (INDI) for all foreign grants. The responsibility is on the department (institution) to meet the shortfall in the project. It is therefore essential that the Head of the Department (prefekt) and the Chief Administrator (administrative chef) are aware of, have seen and agreed to support funding applications from their researchers to the NIH.
Before submission, the Grants Office must have received an Application Assurance form (US form 1 on the Grants Office forms web page) signed by the PI and the Head of the Department (prefekt). A copy of the assurance must be registered and archived at the Department.
It is however possible to include some additional costs in the direct costs provided these can be specifically identified to the project and are not shared with any other project, including rent.
If you have partners in your proposal please observe the following:
The DUNS number of each participating organization is needed.
When the grant application involves partner organizations, the total costs (Direct + Facilities & Administrative Costs*) of all partner organizations are considered Direct Costs for the prime applicant.
Please contact Grants Office for more information.
Submission of application
According to NIH policy only Authorized Organizational Representatives (AORs) are allowed to submit applications through Grants.gov. At KI the AOR is Björn Kull, Head of the GO.
For an application to be on time, ultimately it will need to be a completely error-free application (i.e., passed Grants.gov and eRA Commons validations without errors) submitted to Grants.gov by 5 pm local time of the applicant organization on the receipt date.
Remember to check you assembled application!
After your application has been submitted it is important to check your assembled application in the eRA Commons. After the two-day viewing period, and once the application has moved forward to the Division of Receipt and Referral, the Help Desk staff no longer can assist with changes to the application.
NIH policies that apply to your grant
A grantee indicates acceptance of an NIH award and its associated terms and conditions by drawing or requesting funds from the designated HHS payment system or office. Once the award is accepted by the grantee, the contents of the Notice of Award (NoA) are binding on the grantee.
Certain foundations will accept proposals that scored highly but not funded by NIH.
The focus and type of grant mechanisms for CDMRP funding vary each year. Application requires registration in the eBRAP system and institutional approval which is obtained electronically. Please contact Grants Office to assist with registration.
Applications to CDMRP are submitted in a two stage proposal. The initial letter of intent can be submitted by the PI. However, full applications must be submitted centrally by Grants Office. Often the time between approval of the letter of intent and the full application is short so it is important to notify Grants Office that you plan to submit a letter of intent (LOI) and as soon you have been invited to submit a full application.
The CDMRP can cover full overhead costs. However, since applications are submitted centrally, it is important to obtain institutional approval prior to submission of the full application.
US non-federal applications
Many private agencies cover limited or no overhead costs so it is important to discuss with your departmental administration and Grants Office before applying to these foundations. In addition, foundations may have specific requirements regarding intellectual property and research rights which may be risky for the researcher themselves. Grants Office should be notified regarding all applications to private foundations.