USAID University Engagement through Higher Education Institutions
To: Chairs, Departments in the Biological, Physical, and Social Sciences
From: Heather Daniels, Graduate School
Date: January 31, 2012
Subject: USAID University Engagement through Higher Education
Nominations are due at the Graduate School on Friday, February 17; Deadline for internal competition is Friday, February 24.
In an effort to facilitate the development of research proposals for this call, the Graduate School will be offering a facilitation meeting on Monday February 13 at 1:30 pm in 1360 Genetics/Biotechnology Center. The goal of this meeting is to enable PIs and others interested in this request to meet each other and begin to form synergistic teams for developing a response to the call for applications. The meeting will also provide potential applicants with information regarding keys to the success of interdisciplinary applications and information regarding an IT tool that can help a team of investigators from across campus coordinate their grant planning efforts.
The intent of this program is to harness the knowledge, research, and creativity found on higher education campuses to further increase the effectiveness and efficiency of USAID’s development programs while reducing the costs over time.
By leveraging the capacity and knowledge of universities and research institutions, USAID seeks to broaden the capacity of development institutions more broadly, including USAID, developing countries, and other donor organizations. In this way, academic institutions involved in the partnership will serve as virtual centers of knowledge that will help USAID and the larger development community better understand problems, and evaluate and develop new solutions to development challenges. Partnering institutions will foster innovations in science and technology, and engage and inspire a new and broader community of scholars and students involved in the complex issues of international development planning, execution, and assessment. Specifically, through the resultant cooperative agreement(s), the academic community will support USAID and other development organizations to improve their analytical capabilities in understanding development challenges and core barriers to addressing them, catalogue solutions to different challenges, catalyze and bring forward novel approaches to addressing development problems, and encourage the development and application of new tools within science, technology, and engineering to improve the efficacy and decrease cost of development interventions.
The overall goal is to substantially improve the efficacy and impact of USAID’s programs and policies by harnessing the power of universities and other research institutions as centers of innovation for development. Through this program, the Agency seeks to be better stewards of public and private funds by increasing the efficiency, efficacy and impact of our policies and programs. USAID will fund two types of “Centers” that will further knowledge of development, innovation and engage with a broad range of actors.
Consortium Centers are robust collaborations among institutions of higher education and/or other non-profit or for-profit organizations that complement each other’s strengths. The purpose of a consortium is to undertake efforts that a single entity could not by expanding the scale, efficacy, and knowledge base of a single center. Applicants are encouraged to be creative in the development of such centers, including the formation of alliances of non-academic institutions. All consortia are strongly encouraged to include developing country or research institutions.
Single Institution Centers involve a single higher education institution. Single Institution Centers may collaborate with entities outside of the individual institution; it is up to the institution itself to determine whether the nature of their partnerships actually constitute a consortium.
The Centers will help USAID and the larger development community (1) better define development problems and constraints to their solution, (2) identify, test, and create potential and existing solutions to those problems, and (3) then encourage entrepreneurship, experimentation, and innovation in addressing those problems, with the overall goal of improving the effectiveness of the Agency’s development efforts. The Centers will provide the Agency, and the larger development community, with data and analysis in support of development policy and programming. They will apply science and technology and engineering for development – supporting experimentation, creativity, and the incubation of new solutions and new technologies for addressing global problems. And finally, the Centers will provide a venue for students, faculty and the broader academic community to engage in development around critical global problems and encourage problem-focused, multidisciplinary approaches to development.
Cost-Shared, Leverage and Sustainability. The application will be evaluated on the extenten to which it demonstrates cost-sharing from the applicant and leverage from external resources to make the activities proposed sustainable.
Consortium Centers will be funded between $4-5 million per year and are not to exceed $25 million over the five-year period. Single Institution Centers will be funded between $1-2 million per year and are not to exceed $10 million over the five-year period.
The Division of International Studies can facilitate your connection to
international initiatives and centers on campus or around the world,
whether to expand support opportunities, establish research
collaborations, or develop an internationally focused course. If they are
aware of your proposal ideas and current projects they can also help other
potential collaborators and potential funding sources find you. Please contact Associate Dean of the Division of International Studies
Amy Stambach: 262-1714, email@example.com.
The number of proposals UW–Madison may submit is limited to three. UW-Madison is limited to one application as the lead in a consortium center.
This contains additional information on the program and specific application instructions, etc.
Internal Competition Application Instructions:
Notice of intent: Send an email message to firstname.lastname@example.org with "USAID-PI Last Name " by Friday, February 17, 2012 to inform us of your intention to submit a proposal. Please include the following in your email message:
--Title of proposal
--Consortium Center or Institutional Center
PIs will be notified if an internal competition is needed.
For the project selected, a concept note must be e-mailed as a pdf for MS Word format. The concept note is due on March 22, 2012 at 1 pm CDT. Full proposals will be requested by the agency. These will be due on July 17, 2012 at 1 pm CDT.
If you have any questions about this procedure, please contact Heather Daniels (608) 263-7274 or Petra Schroeder (608) 265-4868 or email email@example.com