Pilot Grants for Obesity Research with Targeted Outcomes

From: Tufts Institute for Global Obesity Research (TIGOR)
Proposal Due Date: February 1, 2021, 5:00 pm

The Tufts Institute for Global Obesity Research (TIGOR) is pleased to invite pilot project applications for 2021-2022. 

As part of the University’s Strategic Plan for Research, TIGOR fosters collaborations to address the complex societal issue of obesity, with a focus on both domestic and global obesity. This is the fourth round of this pilot study program.  A maximum of 2 grants will be awarded.  In an effort to bolster grant submissions for extramural funding, a federal or foundation grant proposal, or substantial progress towards a proposal will be expected as the final product from this funding opportunity.  


Tufts faculty/scientists with primary appointment/affiliation at Tufts University or Tufts Medical Center are eligible to apply.

Grant(s) will be for proposals that will support competitive funding applications for government (NIH, USDA, NSF, CDC) or foundation grants for cutting-edge research relevant to obesity.  

Project Period and Budget

Project Duration: Projects are expected to begin by 4/1/2021. Projects must be completed and all expenditures incurred within 12 months of the start date unless formal approval of program period extension is received and approved.

Budget: Grant(s) will be funded at a maximum of $20,000.

Award Conditions

These pilot grants are to support work that bolster grant submissions for extramural funding. Specific proposal(s) planned to external sponsor(s) that will be advanced by this pilot grant, and the intended timeline for submission must be included. Research studies that advance health equity for populations that have been marginalized, underserved, or underrepresented are particularly encouraged.  Completion of the proposed research activities must be feasible in the 12-month grant period. 

Funds can be used in a variety of ways including for providing support to students, postdocs, or research assistants; data collection; data analysis; and grant writing.

Review Criteria

  • The likelihood that the proposed research activities can be completed in the 12-month grant period.
  • The potential and likelihood that the results and data generated from this project will lead to a competitive proposal for extramural funding. Additional weight will be given to those with the potential for this.
  • The research team must identify specific proposal(s) planned to external sponsor(s) that will be advanced by this pilot grant, and the intended timeline for submission.
  • Intellectual merit. Funds must be used to advance a study this is innovative and original in order to advance knowledge in the area of obesity.
  • Degree of innovation and originality.
  • Clarity of goals.
  • Feasibility of timeline.
  • Appropriateness of budget allocations.

Reporting Requirements

By May 1, 2022, grant recipients must provide to the TIGOR Steering Committee at Shanti.Sharma@tufts.edu a final report of no longer than two single-spaced pages. The final summary report should:

  • Describe the work that was accomplished, and manuscripts submitted or planned.
  • Identify specific proposal(s) submitted (or planned) to external sponsor(s) as a result of the grant.
  • Describe any plans for ongoing collaboration beyond the funded project.

In addition, grant recipients will be contacted approximately quarterly and asked to provide a brief update on progress.

Pilot Grant Application Content

  1. Cover Page (one page): Provide title of project; names, titles, affiliations, and contact information of principal investigator and co-investigators; and proposed start and end dates.
  2. Project Description (Up to four single-spaced pages): Describe the proposed project including goals, activities or experiments, expected outcomes, a timeline for completion, and how the project will lead to subsequent external funding. Include a section on the specific proposal(s) planned to external sponsor(s) that will be advanced by this pilot grant, and the intended timeline for submission.
  3. Budget and Budget Justification (no more than one page).
  4. Resumes: Include an abbreviated CV, bio-sketch, or resume (no more than four pages) for each significant collaborator.
  5. References/ Bibliography (no more than one page): A short list of relevant publications.

Key Dates

Application submission period begins: December 16, 2020

Application submission period ends: February 1, 2021

Award decision: March 15, 2021

Earliest start date: April 1, 2021

Submission: Proposals should be submitted electronically as a single PDF to Shanti.Sharma@tufts.edu.

Review Process

A distributed review process will be followed, therefore by submitting applicants will be agreeing to review up to four grants. The review process may be adjusted depending on the number of proposals received.  Notification of funding will be made on or before March 15, 2021.

For questions and submission of a proposal, please send email to Shanti.Sharma@tufts.edu.