Interdisciplinary Faculty Research Seed Grants

The Global Change & Sustainability Center and the Society, Water, and Climate Research Group are pleased to offer seed funds to University of Utah faculty to incentivize new or expanded interdisciplinary collaborations between two or more U of U faculty researchers from different disciplines.  These grants are intended to help foster new interdisciplinary or transdisciplinary sustainability and global / environmental change research. (See research themes.)

Applications due: January 31, 2018

Award Categories

  • Interdisciplinary Research Extensions
    Up to $10,000 (to one faculty researcher) to facilitate a new collaboration with another faculty member within an existing (funded) project; expectation of publication of work within 1-2 years of award.
  • Transdisciplinary Directions
    Up to $20,000 (to two or more faculty researchers) to facilitate new research that brings together diverse disciplinary excellence in a new way and will lead to a grant submission in the coming year.
  • Big Ideas
    Up to $35,000 (to two or more faculty researchers) to facilitate transformative work that will lead to a >$1M proposal within 2 years.


All U of U faculty are eligible for funding.  Each individual may request funds for only one proposal. (Individual can be an unfunded collaborator on another seed grant, but may only submit one request).


Individual faculty or teams are invited to submit a proposal of up to 3 pages describing the work to be completed. In addition, a budget and letters of commitment from each collaborator are required. Submit application using the form below.
 Funds may be used for research expenses, student support, summer salary, etc and must be spent within 1 year of the award.

Award Criteria

Applications will be reviewed to assess the impact and the projected outcomes of the proposed work. Priority will be given to projects with strong potential for co-authored publications and likelihood of contributing to future new research and return on investment with additional external funding. In addition, the committee will consider opportunities for interdisciplinary student training, utilization of campus resources and field stations, and leveraging other funding opportunities. A subset of award funds will be allocated specifically for research that integrates society, water, and climate.

Reviews and Awards

An interdisciplinary research committee will review submissions and decide upon awards. Award announcements will be made by Friday, February 17, 2018. We anticipate funding at least one of each grant type (total funding awarded dependent on number and impact of submissions received).


Awardees will be required to submit a written report on the progress of their projects 6 months and 1 year after the award is made. Students engaged in research linked to the projects will present at the annual Environment and Sustainability Research Symposium. Any changes in the research plan will require written approval from the GCSC.

Questions?  Contact Laurie Mecham or Brenda Bowen.