For those new to grant applications and feeling a little overwhelmed at the prospect, here are some tips to help you get started:
Know the goals of the funding agency. What are they dedicated to? What population do they serve? How does your research further their goals?
Understand the eligibility criteria – get clarification if you have questions. Consider the credentials, affiliations, experience, geographical areas, populations etc. that the funding agency is looking for.
Be realistic about what your team will be able to do and what conclusions you will be able to draw.
Plan a detailed budget, and provide the amount and type of evidence that the agency requires to back up your budget.
Find out how the funding agency defines different budgetary lines – some include different types of costs in different categories.
Pay attention to the timelines attached to the grant, and what that means for your project. Will you need to seek additional funding each year? What deliverables are expected by what deadlines?
The people reviewing your application will appreciate clarity and brevity. Remember that they may not be experts in your field, and will have limited time to devote to reviewing your application.
Consider having a few colleagues review your application before you submit it – and give yourself enough time to make changes based on their comments.
Below are external resources and websites providing grant writing support and information