The Graduate College, the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and the Graduate Program in Food Systems is pleased to announce an opportunity for faculty and graduate students to collaborate together over the summer of 2020 to facilitate the submission of a grant proposal, the organization of a conference, the development of a book proposal or the design and organization of special issue of a scholarly journal (or a similar proposed activity) within food systems.

The available funds are to assist in the development of these activities as part of a broader transdisciplinary collaboration that will be ongoing beyond this funding opportunity.  Thus, there is a special emphasis on travel funds to host colleagues from other institutions or to travel to visit colleagues in order to expand or deepen transdisciplinary work. Therefore, these funds can be used towards travel costs and meeting expenses. They can also be used for short-term assistance in completing proposals. These funds will not provide summer salary for faculty. The primary work is expected to be completed by September 1, 2020 but carryover funds are permitted to be used through January 1, 2021. These funds are available only to internal applicants.

Funds are available for up to 4 transdisciplinary workshop or proposal development teams. The maximum amount of funds available for each team is $10,000. The lead for the workshop/proposal can be a PhD student or a pre-tenure faculty member. Administrative support will be available for the workshop organization. Budget management should be done through the lead team member’s home department.

Proposal Requirements:

  • A team that includes at least two of the following: an advanced graduate student (PhD preferred), a junior faculty member and a senior faculty member (lecturer or professor) from the University of Vermont.
  • A team that is able to define how their team and the proposed project are transdisciplinary in organization and intent.
  • A narrative (3 pages single spaced, maximum) that outlines the proposed opportunity as well as the roles of the team members (including those external to UVM); a short budget narrative (1 page, maximum).
  • A budget.
  • A collaborative event that occurs by September 1, 2020.

Proposal Evaluation:

All proposals will be evaluated by Dean of the Graduate College Cynthia Forehand and Dean of CALS Jean Harvey.

Evaluation Criteria will involve the following:

  • The transdisciplinary organization of the team.
  • The feasibility of the proposed work in the time frame.
  • The clear articulation of the opportunity for a long-term transdisciplinary collaboration.
  • The reasonableness of the budget.
  • Preference will be given to teams/individuals that did not previously received this award in 2019.

Please submit your proposals by January 5, 2020 to Allison Spain, Coordinator of the Food Systems Graduate Program ( You can contact her with any questions at 802-656-2042.



Allison R Spain