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The Office of Research Development facilitates the University’s selection process for Limited Submissions grants and awards. When a sponsoring agency limits the number of proposals that the University can submit for a funding opportunity, those opportunities are limited submissions. Many of these grants and awards are prestigious and winning them can bring high visibility to researchers and scholars. Likewise, winning these opportunities enhances the reputation of the University’s faculty and its research portfolio.

Limited Submissions, Awards and Internal Funding Database

As of January 2021, we are moving administration of the limited submissions process to the Limited Submissions and Awards Management System (Onyen protected).

Please review documentation on how to access this system as an:


A limited submissions grant is given to an individual or a team to fund a particular project or body of work. Agencies accept a limited number of proposals from each institution and the University must determine which proposals are submitted. Applications are submitted to the ORD, which coordinates the University’s formal submission to the grant agency. For proposals that are not funded, the grant agencies often provide substantive feedback on strategies to improve proposals for resubmission.

A limited submissions award is given to an individual as an acknowledgment of their academic or professional achievement. Faculty are nominated by a department chair, dean, or program head. ORD coordinates an internal review of candidates to determine the University’s official nominee. These awards frequently target junior faculty who have demonstrated significant contributions early in their careers. Many corporate entities and private foundations will award individual faculty as acknowledgment of their academic or professional achievements. Foundations will invite academic institutions to nominate promising investigators—often junior faculty—with a high likelihood of making significant contributions in a particular area of research and/or scholarship.

We make every effort to identify limited submission opportunities and provide internal information in a timely manner. If a researcher should identify a limited submission that does not appear on our list or our calendar, please forward the program information as soon as possible to the Limited Submissions and Awards Team at limited_submission@unc.edu.

There are no upcoming events at this time.

Internal Deadline Sponsor Deadline Funding Agency Opportunity Title Discipline Eligibility Date Posted
Oct. 1 Dec. 4 NSF AI Institutes Data Science
Computer Science
Artificial Intelligence
Open to all PI-eligible faculty Sept. 11

Limited Submissions Portal

Below is a list of limited submissions awards sponsored by corporate entities and private foundations. The University has competed for these awards historically and we expect to continue to participate in the annual competitions. All dates are approximate and are contingent upon official invitation from the sponsoring agency.

Sponsoring Agency Limited Submission Award Disciplines of Interest (Broad) When to Expect Internal Call (Approximate)
Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Awards Program Chemical Sciences Fall
David and Lucille Packard Foundation Packard Fellowships in Science and Engineering STEM Fields Early Winter
Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation Moore Inventor Fellows STEM Fields, Chemical Sciences Winter
American Diabetes Association Pathways to Stop Diabetes: Initiator Award, Accelerator Award, and Visionary Award Basic and Clinical Diabetes Research Late Winter
Takeda Corporation (via New York Academy of Sciences) Innovators in Science Award Neuroscience (2017 Focus) Spring
Brain Research Foundation Scientific Innovations Award Brain Neuroscience Research Spring
William T. Grant Foundation WT Grant Scholars Program Social/Behavioral Research in Youth and Inequalities Spring
Mallinckrodt Foundation Mallinckrodt Grants Basic Sciences Informing Disease/Conditions Late Spring
Pew Charitable Trusts Pew Scholars in Biomedical Research Basic Sciences Informing Diseases/Conditions Late Spring
Searle Fund at the Chicago Community Trust Searle Scholars Program Basic Sciences in Medicine, Chemistry, and Biology Late Spring
Simons Foundation Simons Investigator Program Math, Physics, Computer Sciences Summer
Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Mellon New Direction Fellowships Arts and Humanities, Humanistic Social Sciences Summer
Greenwall Foundation Faculty Scholars Program Bioethics-focused Research Summer
Johnson and Johnson WiSTEM2D Scholars Program Women in
STEM Fields
Summer
New York Academy of Sciences Blavatnik Awards for Young Scientists STEM Fields Late Summer
St. Baldrick’s Research Grants / Scholar Grants Childhood Cancer Research Fall
Carnegie Corporation of New York Andrew Carnegie Fellows Program Arts and Humanities, Social Sciences Early Fall
Rita Allen Foundation Rita Allen Scholars Award Basic Cancer, Immunology, and Neuroscience Research Late Summer
Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research New Innovator in Food and Agriculture Research Award Food and Agricultural Sciences TBD
Brain Research Foundation Fay/Frank Seed Grant Basic Neuroscience Research Fall
Oak Ridge Associated Universities Ralph E. Powe Junior Faculty Enhancement Awards STEM Fields Fall

Limited Submission Selection Policy:

Researchers planning to apply to a limited submission opportunity should notify ORD and submit a pre-proposal application as soon as possible.

If the number of applicants exceeds the available submission allowance, each application will enter an internal competition. The internal competition will consist of a peer review team which evaluates the pre-applications and recommends faculty teams to be cleared for submission. If fewer than the maximum available submission slots are submitted prior to the deadline, we do not host an internal competition, and faculty teams are cleared to submit on a first-come, first-served basis.

Limited Submission 45-day Policy:

Any limited submission that is not on the calendar above and has less than 45-days before the first due date will be approved to submit on a first-come, first-served basis. Please contact limited_submission@unc.edu to verify.

Limited Submission Renewal Policy:

Priority is granted to teams seeking to renew a proposal for a limited submission. Please contact limited_submission@unc.edu to confirm renewal.

Limited Submission Selection by School Policy:

For limited submission opportunities in which the limit on the number of allowable applications is placed on individual schools (i.e. School of Medicine), each individual school is required to facilitate a selection process and internal competition of its own.

Standard application materials include:

  • Biosketch or CV of PI
  • Brief Project Description (4 pages unless award specifies differently)
  • List of potential collaborators (internal and external to UNC)
  • Names of three internal (to UNC) faculty who could speak knowledgeably about the project, in the event of an internal review. Faculty named on the project, chairs or deans, direct reports or others who have a conflict of interest cannot serve on the internal review committee.
  • Other materials specific to the requirements of the sponsoring agency

ORD facilitates the University Limited Submissions process. A main feature of this process is that it is a peer review. The UNC Chapel Hill process for the internal review of proposals, mirrors that of the foundations and federal sponsor-specific guidelines. The Limited Submissions and Awards team makes every effort to assemble review committees that are inclusive and representative of UNC proudly diverse faculty.

How did I get chosen as a reviewer?

As a peer review process, reviewers are chosen by the grant applicants. The applicants select UNC faculty peers to review their work. They submit three names of faculty members who can speak knowledgeably about the area of proposed research. From among this list, ORD chooses a faculty member to observe the internal review process for the proposal.

What are my responsibilities as a reviewer?

Reviewers are responsible for reading the information packet sent to them by ORD one week prior to the review. Once reviewers are familiar with the candidate’s proposals (usually only 1-3 pages long), CVs, and grant criteria, the committee will meet. During the review, the faculty members confer and select the University nominee from the group of confirmed candidates put forward for the grant.

Guide to internal submissions processes:
  • Foundations: Carefully review prior UNC winners, Foundation selection criteria, boards of directors if available, and eligibility.
  • Federal Sponsors: Carefully review sponsor mission, solicitation priorities, and any special review criteria.
Peer Review Quick Information
  • Review committees are composed only of faculty members who have expertise in the research being reviewed (faculty are identified by candidates under review).
  • University nominees are chosen by the faculty committee.
  • The ORD Director facilitates reviews.
  • General Reviewer feedback (with reviewer consent) is provided to all faculty candidates as well as the nominees to assist in improving future outcomes.