The US-Ireland Research and Development Partnership, launched in July 2006, is a unique initiative involving funding agencies across three jurisdictions: United States of America (USA), Republic of Ireland (RoI) & Northern Ireland (NI). Under the US-Ireland R&D Partnership programme, a ‘single-proposal, single-review’ mechanism is facilitated by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and National Institutes of Health (NIH) who accept submissions from tri-jurisdictional (USA, NI and RoI) teams to a number of their existing funding programmes.  All proposals submitted under the auspices of the Partnership must have significant research involvement from researchers in all three jurisdictions.

The overall goal of the Partnership is to increase the level of collaborative R&D amongst researchers and industry professionals across the three jurisdictions.  This collaboration aims to generate valuable discoveries and innovations which are transferable to the marketplace, or will lead to enhancements in health, disease prevention or healthcare.

The Partnership achieves its goals through tri-partite research projects in which the funding agencies fund the elements of research undertaken in their own jurisdiction. Importantly, the Partnership must add significant value to each research programme above that achievable by the PI in each jurisdiction working alone. 

The following thematic areas are prioritised as important research grand challenges for the health and prosperity of the citizens of the United States, Ireland and Northern Ireland:

  • Sensors & Sensor Networks
  • Nanoscale Science and Engineering
  • Telecommunications
  • Energy & Sustainability
  • Health
  • Agriculture (new pilot theme)

As part of this funding process, the governments and relevant research funding agencies within the Partnership contribute to the research costs of researchers based in their jurisdictions.  The partner agencies in the USA are the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH).  The partner agencies in RoI are Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) and the Health Research Board (HRB), who are only involved in the Health theme.  In Northern Ireland, the Health & Social Care R&D Division (HSC R&D) supports health-related projects, while the Department for the Economy (DfE), and Invest Northern Ireland (InvestNI) support projects related to Sensors & Sensor Networks, Nanoscale Science & Engineering, Telecommunications, and Energy & Sustainability.  InvestNI and DfE support health-related projects in the area of Sensors & Sensor Networks and Nanoscale Science & Engineering.

For proposal submissions under the Agriculture pilot theme to the National Institute of Food and Agriculture [NIFA (US)], please contact the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine [DAFM (RoI)] or Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs [DAERA (NI)]. Further details on the Agriculture theme can be accessed from the webpage of the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine.


Further information on how to apply and details of the programme can be found in the specific guidance documents below.

US-Ireland R&D Partnership Proposal to the National Science Foundation

The following guidance document provides details on how to apply to the programmes at the National Science Foundation under the US-Ireland R&D Partnership programme. Science Foundation Ireland manage the NSF section of the programme for RoI applicants – for further details please contact [email protected]

Call Document (PDF) & (Word)

Frequently Asked Questions 

US-Ireland R&D Partnership Proposal to the National Institutes of Health

The following guidance document provides details on how to apply to programmes at the National Institutes of Health under the US-Ireland R&D Partnership programme. Please note that for RoI applicants, Science Foundation Ireland and the Health Research Board work in partnership for applications to the NIH and have agreed to co-fund RoI applicants whose collaborative proposal is approved for funding by the NIH. SFI and HRB will jointly fund the RoI applicant at a level of 50% each, and operate a rotating administration of the programme. HRB currently manages the NIH section of the US-Ireland R&D Partnership programme for RoI applicants – for further details please contact [email protected]

NIH Call Document (PDF) & (Word) 

Frequently Asked Questions

Planning grant

In addition, planning grants are available to RoI applicants who wish to develop a proposal with NI and US partners. The US-Ireland R&D Partnership Planning grant is a travel award to enable RoI applicants to travel to the US to meet with their partners, visit the facilities and labs of the US partner and draft the single-trijurisdictional proposal for submission to the NSF or to the NIH. The updated call documents can be found below:

The planning grant call document for applicants proposing to submit to the NSF can be found here. Please contact [email protected] for further details.

The planning grant call document for applicants proposing to submit to the NIH can be found here. Please contact [email protected] for further details.

Centre-to-Centre Partnership

Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) together with the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Department for the Economy (DfE) in Northern Ireland has developed a mechanism to link SFI-funded Research Centres, NSF-funded Engineering Research Centres (link) and researchers in Centres in Northern Ireland. Further details can be found below.

 

Under the US-Ireland R&D Partnership Programme, the National Science Foundation (US) together with Science Foundation Ireland (RoI) and the Department for the Economy (NI) have expanded the existing opportunities for individual investigator-driven collaborations to include Research Centre-based collaborations between the United States, the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland. The Centre-to-Centre mechanism is currently open to existing SFI-funded Research Centres, NSF-funded Engineering Research Centres and researchers in Centres in Northern Ireland. 
 
The NSF-Ireland R&D Partnership Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) has been updated to include reference to Centre-to-Centre collaborations, and funding decisions will be based on a combination of the standard NSF Review Criteria and additional Centre-specific criteria in support of the vision, strategic plan, and ongoing activities within each Centre. Criteria to be used in eliciting reviewer feedback on the proposed research programme have been developed. In line with the SFI Partnerships programme, funding for the RoI component of the Centre-to-Centre partnership would be considered at a maximum of 50% of the total requested trijurisdictional project cost. 
 
The mechanism is a two-step process with Centres being required to submit a two-page Expression of Interest, and if successful, the Centres partnership is invited to submit a single tri-jurisdictional full proposal which undergoes review at the annual Engineering Research Centre (ERC) site visit. The flow chart below outlines the steps and indicative timelines for the Centre-to-Centre mechanism.

 

EXPRESSION OF INTEREST (EoI) 

To gauge whether the proposed collaboration fits within the scope of the US-Ireland C2C agreement, partners are asked to send a short summary of the proposed collaboration to their funding agency.  This summary should be composed of two sections (each approximately one page in length).  The first section should address the intellectual merit and broader impacts of the proposed collaboration – focusing on the proposed research, the value of the international collaboration, the role of each participant, and the anticipated budget scale (detailed information on the budget is not necessary).  The second section should focus on how the proposed project fits within the larger scope of the SFI-funded Centre, and include a short section on how intellectual property issues will be addressed within the context of participating Centres and universities. 

The EoIs from each Centre are shared among partner agencies and assessed by them at a joint meeting. If approved, the Centres partnership is invited to submit a full proposal. Please ensure that these EoIs are submitted to your funding agency no later than 12 weeks in advance of the NSF deadline. 

 

CENTRE-TO-CENTRE FULL PROPOSAL 

The outline of the centre-to-centre full proposal along with the evaluation criteria can be found at the link below together with the SFI cover sheet and budget template: 

Full Proposal Outline and Evaluation Criteria 

Cover Sheet Budget Template         

The peer review of the full proposal is undertaken by the NSF ERC annual site visit panel. The deadline for submission of the full proposal is determined by the date of the ERC’s annual site visit. The joint proposal must be submitted to the NSF 5 weeks in advance of the annual site visit along with the ERC’s annual report. The proposal is reviewed by the ERC’s site visit panel and reviews are made available to partner agencies in NI and the RoI to enable a funding decision. The draft full proposal will need pre-approval by SFI so it must be submitted to SFI 6 weeks in advance of the NSF deadline (11 weeks in advance of the ERC annual site visit). If supportive, SFI will provide a funding commitment letter advising the NSF and peer reviewers of our support of the RoI component should the proposal be approved for funding by the NSF post peer review. This letter is sent to the RoI applicant for inclusion in the full proposal submission to NSF, and is also send directly by SFI to the NSF. The Northern Ireland component follows a similar process. 

The budget available for the RoI partner is in line with the SFI Partnership programme and is capped at 50% of the TOTAL project costs. The budget needs to be clearly and fully justified and must adhere to the SFI Grant Budget Policy.

Deadlines

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Intention to submit form

For RoI applicants preparing a joint trijurisdictional proposal for submission under the US-Ireland R&D Partnership programme to the NSF or the NIH, it is now mandatory to submit an ‘intention to submit form’. The form and details can be found in the call documents above. For applicants preparing a US-Ireland R&D Partnership proposal for submission to the National Science Foundation, please submit the intention to submit form to [email protected] no later than 10 weeks in advance of the full proposal deadline at NSF. For those applicant preparing a US-Ireland R&D Partnership proposal for submission to the National Institutes of Health, please submit the intention to submit form to [email protected] no later than 10 weeks in advance of the full proposal deadline at NIH.

Draft full proposal submission

US-Ireland applications for submission to the NSF must be submitted to SFI ([email protected]) no later than 6 weeks in advance of the full proposal deadline at the NSF, or the internal deadline at the US Research Body, should one exist. This enables SFI to carry out an internal review of the proposal and seek support from the SFI Executive for the partnership proposal. If approved by the SFI Executive, a funding commitment letter is issued to the applicant for inclusion in the submission to NSF, and also to the NSF outlining SFI’s support of the proposal should it be approved for funding post international peer review. 

US-Ireland applications for submission to the NIH must be submitted to HRB ([email protected]) no later than 6 weeks in advance of the full proposal deadline at the NIH, or the internal deadline at the US Research Body, should one exist. This enables HRB and SFI to carry out an internal review of the proposal and seek support from their management for the partnership proposal. If approved by the SFI and HRB, a funding commitment letter is issued to the applicant for inclusion in the submission to NIH, and also to the NIH outlining and HRB and SFI’s support of the proposal should it be approved for funding post international peer review.

Planning grant proposal submission

Planning grant applications for applicants proposing to submit to the NSF must be submitted to SFI ([email protected]) no later than 5 weeks in advance of the close-to-final draft full proposal deadline.Planning grant applications for applicants proposing to submit to the NIH must be submitted to HRB ([email protected]) no later than 5 weeks in advance of the close-to-final draft full proposal deadline. This enables review of the planning grant by SFI/HRB in advance of travel to the US partner’s labs to develop the proposal in advance of the NSF/NIH deadline.

Additional resources

SFI together with the National Institutes of Health (NIH) held a Grants Process Webinar in June 2014.  The focus was on grant-writing tips and an insight into review procedures at the NIH. For full details see below

NIH Grants Process Webinar

Science Foundation Ireland together with the National Institutes of Health held a webinar in June 2014 for researchers on the island of Ireland to learn about all aspects of the NIH Grants Process, including valuable grant writing tips and insight into review procedures.

The US-Ireland R&D Partnership is a unique initiative involving funding agencies across three jurisdictions: United States of America (USA), Republic of Ireland (RoI) & Northern Ireland (NI). Under the US-Ireland R&D Partnership programme, a ‘single-proposal, single-review’ mechanism is facilitated by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and National Institutes of Health (NIH) who accept submissions from tri-jurisdictional (USA, NI and RoI) teams to a number of their existing funding programmes.

This webinar was designed to convey the fundamentals of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) grants process, with particular focus on grants writing for success under the US-Ireland R&D Partnership programme, in addition to explaining the NIH RePORT database, a potential resource for sourcing US partners.

These individual webinar recordings and presentations are now available at the links below. Powerpoint slides are also available separately.

We hope Irish researchers will find this a useful repository of information and we thank our partners at the NIH for contributing to this webinar.

NOTE: These are large files and may take time to download. If you are having difficulty please consider switching browsers to Firefox or Chrome, for example.

Welcome to the NIH Grants Process Webinar

  • Dr. Aisling McEvoy, Scientific Programme Manager, SFI
  • Prof. Mark WJ Ferguson, Director General, SFI, and Chief Scientific Advisor to the Government of Ireland
  • Dr. Lawrence A. Tabak, Principal Deputy Director, NIH

Webinar link –  SFI & NIH Introduction Please note that we had some access issues at the start of this presentation, so the presentation is a little slow to start. Your patience is appreciated.

The NIH Top 10 (Fundamentals of the NIH Grants Process)

Megan Columbus, Director, Division of Communications & Outreach, Office of Extramural Research, NIH

Webinar Link  - NIH Top 10

Powerpoint Slides - Powerpoint Slides for the NIH Top 10

NIH Peer Review Process 

Dr. Richard Nakamura, Director, Center for Scientific Review (CSR), NIH

Webinar Link - NIH Peer Review Process

Powerpoint Slides - Powerpoint Slides for NIH Peer Review Process

The U.S.–Ireland R&D Partnership: Grant Writing for Success

Dr. Teresa Jones, Program Director, Division of Diabetes, Endocrinology, and Metabolic Diseases,National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), NIH

Webinar Link - US-Irl Partnership - Grant Writing for Success

Powerpoint Slides - Powerpoint Slides for US-Irl Partnership Grant Writing for Success

Using RePORT & NIH Resources to Your Advantage

Megan Columbus, Director, Division of Communications & Outreach, Office of Extramural Research, NIH

Webinar Link -  Using RePORT & NIH Resources to Your Advantage

Powerpoint Slides - Powerpoint Slides - Using RePORT & NIH Resources to Your Advantage

 

Additional Resources:

US-Ireland R&D Partnership Programme FAQs  

US-Ireland R&D Partnership  FAQs

Health Research Board Information for RoI applicants:

http://www.hrb.ie/research-strategy-funding/grants-and-fellowships/hrb-grants-and-fellowships/grant/115/

Intertrade Ireland – Secretariat for the US-Ireland R&D Partnership

http://www.usirelandresearch.com/index.html

US-Ireland R&D partnership information for NI applicants:

1.      HSC Northern Ireland
2.      Dept for Employment & Learning (DELNI)

NIH Website

NIH Grants Website            

NIH Centre for Scientific Review

NIH RePORT 

This provides access to reports, data, and analyses of NIH research activities, including information on NIH expenditures and the results of NIH supported research.

NIH RePORTER

This is a repository of NIH-funded research projects and provides access to publications and patents resulting from that funding.

 

SFI together with the National Science Foundation (NSF) held a workshop in September 2014. The objectives were to give an overview of the NSF, an insight into the NSF review process and create researcher networking opportunities. Please click on our NSF resource page to view these presentations from senior NSF directors and partner funding agencies SFI & DEL NI. An overview of NSF Engineering Research Centres is provided and valuable tips are also shared from a successful applicant under the partnership programme. For details see below.

For further information on the background of the programme, please see the publication.

NSF Resource

Science Foundation Ireland together with senior directors from the National Science Foundation (NSF) held a workshop on Wireless Communications and Sensing - Devices, Components & Systems in September 2014. The objectives were to give an overview of the NSF, an insight into particular research areas including the NSF review process and create a networking opportunity between researchers based in the Republic of Ireland, Northern Ireland and the United States.

The US-Ireland R&D Partnership is a unique initiative involving funding agencies across three jurisdictions: United States of America (USA), Republic of Ireland (RoI) & Northern Ireland (NI). Under the US-Ireland R&D Partnership programme, a ‘single-proposal, single-review’ mechanism is facilitated by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and National Institutes of Health (NIH) who accept submissions from tri-jurisdictional (USA, NI and RoI) teams to a number of their existing funding programmes.

We hope Irish researchers will find this a useful repository of information and we thank our partners at the NSF for allowing these presentations to be used as an online resource.

We are also grateful to Dr. Paul Hurley from Tyndall for providing insights in the programme from the applicant’s perspective, as a holder of two awards (one expired, one current) under the US-Ireland R&D Partnership Programme.

An additional presentation from 2015 relating to the Centre to Centre mechanism has also been included to give an overview of NSF Engineering Research Centres.

NSF Director Presentations

Dr. Samir El-Ghazaly, NSF Division Director ECCS

Dr. George Haddad, NSF Program Director CCSS

Dr. Dimitris Pavlidis, NSF Program Director EPMD

Tips for applicants from a US-Ireland double award-holder

Dr. Paul Hurley, Tyndall National Institute, University College Cork

Partner Funding Agency Presentations

Claire Thompson

Dr. Aisling McEvoy

NSF Engineering Research Centres (ERCs)

Dr. Keith Roper, NSF Engineering Education and Centres