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FAQ about the Creativity Hubs

Are we allowed to include an investigator from outside of UNC?

Yes, if the collaboration with the external/non-UNC investigators is critical to the project, they can be included in the application. While the program does allow requests for subawards for those collaborators, they should be minimized, as the focus of this initiative is to facilitate growth of the UNC research enterprise.

Can we purchase equipment with funds from this award?

While discouraged, equipment purchase requests are allowable if they are essential to the project, and must be strongly justified as such.

Our group has been collaborating on this idea for several years. Are we eligible to apply?

If you have not already received extramural funding for your idea, if your idea is significantly different from previously funded projects, or if the advancement of you project is generally excluded from traditional funding sources, but successful project advancement would facilitate significant investment from external groups, then you may apply to this program. Please contact for clarification on specific projects. Additionally, please note that the purpose of the Creativity Hubs Pilot Award Program is not to serve as bridge funding or to supplement existing funding.

My research does not obviously fit into the one of the six strategic pillars. Can I still apply?

Yes. The Creativity Hub Pilot Awards are designed to incentivize teams to generate innovative, groundbreaking ideas that solve important challenges. Any team that fits this criterion is encouraged to apply.

How “multidisciplinary” does our team need to be?

Teams must include individuals from at least two different Colleges/Schools/Institutes/Centers. Creativity Hub reviewers are looking for strong multi-disciplinary approaches to solving key challenges, which should be evident in the make-up of the proposal team.

Are F&A costs included in the budget?

No. All of the budget will be direct costs.

Will the awarded project automatically receive all $500,000 of the award at the beginning of the project?

No. The award will be made in two increments: $250,000 in Year 1 and $250,000 in Year 2. Please note that Year 2 of funds will only be released upon completion of a report that describes accomplishments, demonstrates satisfactory progress against pre-defined metrics, and financial accounting of fund expenditures.

Who do I contact if I have questions?

If you have questions about the Creativity Hubs Pilot Award, please contact or the Office of Research Development.

How much detail must we provide about future funding extramural mechanisms for our idea?

Please provide examples of extramural sponsors (federal agencies, industry, venture groups, and/or non-profit organizations) that you anticipate being interested in funding a larger scale proposal. If possible, please provide examples of possible funding mechanisms or Request for Proposals to which you like to apply.

updated 08/30/2018