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Seed Funding

The Research Institute has several internal award programs designed to foster research and scholarly activities, stimulate the quest for external support, and promote Saint Louis University as an excellent teaching and research institution.

To learn about the criteria used to evaluate internal proposals, review our internal awards peer review forms. If an internal proposal deadline falls on a weekend, the deadline will always be the following business day at 5 p.m.

Research Growth Fund

The Research Growth Fund is designed to be a flexible source of funding for faculty across the University to help achieve their research and scholarship ambitions and make progress towards the goals of the Research Institute.

The Research Institute is pleased to announce the Request for Proposals for the second round of the SLU Research Institute’s Research Growth Fund. The RFP has been substantially revised, incorporating feedback from faculty and other stakeholders from every corner of campus.

Applications are not currently being accepted; in lieu of a separate Research Growth Fund application cycle, a research growth component will be incorporated into the January 15 deadlines listed below.

Please contact Jasmin Patel, assistant vice president for research strategy, at with any questions.

See a list of the faculty members to receive funding through the Research Growth Fund 

Scholarship Opportunity Fund

The Scholarship Research Council (SRC) seeks to support small-budget research needs in the humanities, social sciences, and other fields represented in the SRC that are not readily funded by existing mechanisms, but that can pose a significant impediment to research productivity and advancement.

To address this area of funding need, the SRC has created the Scholarship Opportunity Fund (SOF) supported by the Research Growth Fund.  This aligns effectively with the goals of the SLU Research Institute and the Research Growth Fund by leveraging small investments for high-return gains, and helping SLU researchers in the humanities, social sciences, and beyond to sustain and complete their research projects.

The maximum award is $5,000. Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis as long as funds as available, and decisions returned within approximately one month. Awards must be spent within one year and a report submitted on completion.  The SRC will create a subcommittee of faculty to review applications and make recommendations to the council, which will review them at its monthly meeting. More details can be found in the SOF guidelines. 

Spark Microgrants

The Research Institute recognizes the importance of flexible funding to help stimulate ambitious ideas and help faculty find collaborators across the University. To support faculty research, the Institute will make small grants of up to $1,000 available to support faculty who wish to convene possible collaborators outside of their primary disciplinary area.

Applications are submitted on a rolling basis and the Office of the Vice President for Research will review applications weekly. Projects need to be completed within three months of approval. If you need additional information or wish to test the idea, contact Jasmin Patel, assistant vice president for research collaborations, at

Apply for a Spark Microgrant

Beaumont Faculty Development Fund

The Beaumont Faculty Development Fund was established at Saint Louis University in 1976 with initial endowed support from the Beaumont Foundation.  The fund is now administered through the Research Institute.

Its purpose is to meet three goals:

  1. Encourage a positive atmosphere for research and scholarly activity at the University by making small grants available.
  2. Stimulate pursuit of external support for faculty research and scholarly activities.
  3. Promote the University as an excellent place to teach and do research.

Projects with clear and demonstrable relationships to the objectives of the fund are eligible. However, the purpose of the program is to assist rather than totally support a project.

President’s Research Fund

The President’s Research Fund supports promising projects that have strong potential to attract external funding. These funds have been made available since 2009 to support research and scholarly activity. PRF awards are aimed at supporting the collection of data or other pilot activities that the awardee will use as the basis for extramural grant or contract applications.

Previous PRF Recipients

Summer Research Awards in the Humanities

The Summer Research Awards in the Humanities are designated for projects at Saint Louis University that fall broadly into the realm of the humanities.  This focus was implemented, in part, because the focus of the President’s Research Fund is likely to benefit faculty in the sciences preferentially, in that external funding — a prime consideration in the evaluation of those applications — is more abundant in the sciences. The focus of the SRAs is aimed at redressing that imbalance.

The types of research supported by the SRA include pilot research and concept development, prior to the submission of proposals to external funding sources; a specific component of ongoing or new research that may be completed in the summer time frame; or scholarly activity, including course and curriculum development.

Applied Health Sciences Research Grant Program

The Applied Health Sciences Research Grant Program is intended to encourage collaborative groups of interdisciplinary researchers across at least two or more academic units to conceptualize a larger future grant application for external funding. New working relationships are encouraged. Applications for pilot projects should include a tentative plan for a future structured grant and clearly describe how the seed money will be used to support the future grant application.

Awards are made based on a competitive review process in which reviewers consider an application on the merits of the specific activities proposed, relative ranking among other applications, and the availability of funds. Proposals must demonstrate exceptional merit and value for the field of study, the individual, the department, the college or school and the research mission of the University. Preference may be given to new interdisciplinary collaborations.

  • Deadline: January 15, 2020
  • Contact: Bob McNair at  
  • Applications should be submitted via the Openwater portal. Log in to and click on the Openwater icon in the ‘Tools’ tab. You can log in using your SLUNet ID. The first time you log in, you will be asked to set up your profile.