| Call for Pilot Project Proposals
A printer-friendly, PDF version of the call for proposals.
Call for Proposals Flyer
A 1-page flyer announcing the call for proposals.
Additional information for WHOI PIs [PDF version]
Call for Pilot Project Proposals - 2009
The Woods Hole Center for Oceans and Human Health (COHH) invites proposals for short-term
pilot projects to investigate questions at the intersection of oceanographic, biological, and
environmental health sciences.
The Woods Hole COHH is one of four centers in a program sponsored jointly by
the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) and the National Science
Foundation (NSF). The Woods Hole Center is a joint effort involving scientists from the Woods
Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI), the Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL), and the
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).
The purpose of the overall COHH program is “to support interdisciplinary research leading to
improved understanding of the connections between oceans and human health.” This will occur
through “multidisciplinary research programs in the diverse areas of oceanography, climatology,
ecology, biomedical science, and computational biology…[that] will provide for a national
network of investigators and will foster an interconnected research approach dedicated to
understanding the physical, chemical, and biological complexities linking oceans and human
health.” Special areas of emphasis for the COHH program are:
- Harmful algal blooms (HABs)
- Water- and vector-borne diseases
- Marine-derived pharmaceuticals and probes
The Woods Hole COHH is addressing fundamental questions concerning the distribution of
biological agents with potential human health consequences in the temperate coastal ocean,
including bays, harbors and estuaries. Current research projects focus on harmful algal blooms
and on human pathogens and infectious agents, in both cases with focused and complementary
physical oceanographic studies and biological and molecular genetic studies of causative
agents. (See http://www.whoi.edu/science/cohh/whcohh/index.htm)
Objectives of Pilot Project Program
The overall purpose of pilot projects is to assess the
feasibility of new areas of study, especially those that are not currently represented in the
Woods Hole COHH but would contribute to the overall goals of the COHH program and the
Woods Hole center. Pilot projects are intended to support the collection of preliminary data that
can be used to generate full proposals to NSF, NIH, or other agencies or organizations.
Through this pilot project program, we also hope to:
- stimulate collaborative and interdisciplinary research within the center,
- recruit scientists not currently involved in the WH-COHH to become participating members of
the center and interact with other center investigators, and
- foster the application of new technologies and experimental approaches to questions
concerning the impact of oceanic processes on public health.
This year, we are especially looking to fund projects involving short-term or urgent need,
for which pilot funds will jump-start the research or help complete existing projects, or
projects aimed at generating preliminary data for full proposals at advanced stage of
» See previously funded pilot projects
All faculty and research scientists from WHOI, MBL, and MIT are eligible to apply for
Pilot Project grants. Preference for awards will be given to new investigators (those not
currently serving as PI on a COHH research project).
Pilot project awards must be expended within eight months. Budgets of up
to $20K (total costs) will be considered. We anticipate making 5-6 awards. Allowable items
include salaries and supplies. Small items of equipment will be considered only if essential and
strongly justified. Funds for travel to scientific meetings will not be allowed, but requests for
travel or ship time necessary for sampling will be considered if accompanied by strong
Guidelines for pre-proposal and proposal preparation
We will not require pre-proposals this year. However,
prospective applicants should feel free to contact us for advice or feedback on possible proposal
ideas. We will be happy to provide advice regarding the suitability of the proposed research in
terms of the objectives of the Pilot Project Program and the Woods Hole Center.
If you are planning to use the COHH Genomics Core, please contact Hilary Morrison or Mitch
Sogin (contact information below) to discuss the extent of use, and include this information in
will be due by 5 PM EDT on Friday, August 21, 2009
, submitted electronically
(as a single pdf file) to Dianne Rossi (email@example.com
). The subject line of the email should
read “COHH Pilot Project Proposal”. Proposals should include the following items:
- Title page, including Title, PI and major co-investigators, PI contact information, total
costs, and a half-page abstract.
- Research Plan (not to exceed two pages, including any figures or tables), including
- Objective(s) and Rationale
- Approach and methods
- Relevance of proposed research to Oceans and Human Health program and
Woods Hole COHH
- Predicted impact of funds, including anticipated full proposals and publications,
and expected time frame
- References (not included in 2-page limit)
- Detailed budget (including direct and indirect costs)
- Budget justification (one page or less)
- Biographical sketches for all key personnel (up to 2 pages each)
- Other support for all key personnel
- Human subjects and Vertebrate animals approvals (if applicable)
The start date
should be September 1, 2009
The end date
should be no later than April 30, 2010
Proposals will be reviewed by the WH-COHH Internal Advisory Committee
(IAC). The opinions of outside experts also will be solicited as needed for proposals containing elements outside of the expertise of IAC members.
Proposals will be scored based on the following
- Scientific merit – What is the scientific merit and feasibility of the proposed studies?
How appropriate is the experimental design for achieving the stated objectives?
- Relevance and Potential Impact – What is the relevance of the proposed research to the
overall goals of the COHH program as well as the specific goals of the Woods Hole
Center? What is the likelihood that the results obtained will lead to outside funding of a
larger project on this topic and to peer-reviewed publications?
- Innovativeness – Does the proposed research move the Center in new directions or fill
gaps in the current research focus of the center? To what extent does the proposed
research foster the application of new technologies and new experimental approaches to
questions concerning the impact of oceanic processes on public health? To what extent
does the proposed research foster collaborative and interdisciplinary research within the
Center or between the Center and other organizations?
- Investigators – What are the qualifications of the investigators for carrying out the
proposed research? Is the PI a new investigator or junior investigator? Is this a new
direction for the applicant? (Preference will be given to qualified applicants who are not
already associated with the Center as PI on a research project or pilot project, to junior
investigators developing research programs, and to established investigators pursuing
- Facilities – Are the available facilities sufficient for the proposed research?
Additional information and contacts
Dr. Mark Hahn, WHOI (firstname.lastname@example.org
Pilot Project Program Director
Dr. John Stegeman, WHOI (email@example.com
Dr. Dennis McGillicuddy, WHOI (firstname.lastname@example.org
WH-COHH Deputy Director
Dr. Mitch Sogin, MBL (email@example.com
WH-COHH Genomics Core Director
Dr. Hilary Morrison, MBL (firstname.lastname@example.org
WH-COHH Genomics Core Deputy Director
Dianne Rossi (email@example.com
), WH-COHH Administrator