Solutions start here.

Gund Catalyst Awards increase collaborative research at UVM, while advancing the Institute's overarching mission: To mobilize scholars and leaders to understand and solve the world’s critical environmental problems.

Proposals address environmental issues at the interface of two or more of the following broad topics: climate solutions, sustainable agriculture, health and well-being, and resilient communities.

Awards can range from $10,000 to $50,000. We typically fund 3 to 5 projects each year. 

Successful proposals will combine cutting-edge research and scholarship, real-world engagement and impact, and the promise to grow and attract greater support and recognition.

2018 Priority Areas

This year, each proposal should address environmental issues at the interface of two or more of the following broad topics: climate solutions, sustainable agriculture, health and well-being, and resilient communities.

Funding Amounts

We anticipate funding 3 to 5 projects. Individual awards can range from $10,000 to $50,000. Awards will begin February 1, 2019 and end August 31, 2020 – a 19-month duration that includes three semesters and two full summers. No-cost extensions are not typically allowed. There is no overhead on these grants. All funded teams will also have access to assistance in developing follow-on proposals.

2018 Eligibility

The PI on each proposal must be a Gund Fellow.

Each proposal can have up to one Co-PI, which can be another Gund Fellow, a Gund Affiliate, or any UVM faculty member.

Anyone can participate as a Collaborator.


Proposals must involve two or more UVM faculty from two or more departments, and preferably two or more colleges or schools.

Proposals must include a clear description of how the proposed work will lead to broader, longer-term efforts, especially external funding proposals in appropriate fields.

An individual can only serve as PI or co-PI on one Catalyst Award at a time.

Awards can support:

• Costs of research, including materials, equipment, data, and assistants
• Up to one month of summer salaries for UVM faculty on a 9-month contract
• Up to three months of summer stipends per summer for students
​• Travel and workshop costs for project participants

Awards will not support:
• Academic year salaries or stipends for UVM faculty, postdocs, or students
• Salaries or stipends for faculty, postdocs, or students outside UVM

Criteria and Review

To be eligible for funding, proposals must be feasible and address the priorities of this call.

Proposals will also be scored on 5 criteria: intellectual merit, interdisciplinary reach, strength of team, potential for impact, and potential for growth (see scoring rubric).

Priority will be given to proposals that represent new collaborations among UVM scholars, involve graduate and undergraduate students, and/or include collaborators outside of UVM.

Proposals are reviewed by a committee of UVM and external evaluators, chosen to represent relevant disciplines. Final award decisions will be made by the Director of the Gund Institute for Environment.

How to Apply

Proposals will be accepted through UVM’s InfoReady portal until 11:59 pm October 11th, 2018.

Required files to upload include: 

  • Project proposal (see below) 
  • Budget (use template in InfoReady)
  • 2-page CVs for PI, Co-PI (if applicable), and each Collaborator
  • Completed signature page (available in InfoReady) indicating support from the Chair and Dean of PI and co-PI (if applicable).

Project proposal document should include the following sections (max 2500 words, excluding timeline and references):

  1. Abstract (max 250 of the 2500 total words)
  2. Introduction and problem statement
  3. Objectives
  4. Approach and work plan
  5. Expected outcomes (e.g., publications, proposals, public engagements, policy impacts)
  6. Significance and novelty of scholarship
  7. Relevance to Gund priorities
  8. Plan for expanding the work, including follow-on proposals
  9. Interdisciplinary Team
  10. Timeline of activities
  11. References (max 20)

Responsibilities for Grantees

Awardees must acknowledge Gund Institute support in all resulting publications, presentations, or reports. At the end of the grant period, any unspent funds will be returned to the Gund Institute. 

Within 2 months of the end of the grant period, PIs must provide a 2-page written report on project activities and measurable outcomes. Awardees agree to serve as reviewers in future competitions.

Next Competition

  • Summer 2019

Past Competitions


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