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Office of Research and Projects

Internal Grants

Graduate Students

Strategic University Research Cluster Initiative (SURCI)

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The SURCI program seeks proposals for projects that foster and support interdisciplinary research groups at SIUE in developing their competitiveness for large-scale grants. Funding is available for research clusters targeting specific external funding programs that offer support for programmatic, infrastructure-building activities. Examples of targeted external funding opportunities include NSF Engineering Centers Program, NSF ADVANCE Program, NIH Roadmap Initiatives, the NEH Challenge, etc.

Research clusters that build collaborations across departments, colleges, and schools, and with other institutions of strategic importance are critical to enhancing our competitiveness. These partnerships should emerge naturally from shared research interests and needs, and take into account funding opportunities, institutional history, academic priorities and SIUE's unique strengths. This initiative offers competitive grant funding to encourage the development and success of such partnerships.


N/A-Rolling Deadline


All full-time continuing members of the faculty may apply to the SURCI program. Staff members on continuing appointments who have served as an investigator or co-investigator on an externally sponsored grant are also eligible for the SURCI program.

Award Description

Research Cluster Grants are not meant to provide seed funding for proposal development by small teams. Support for seed grants for small teams is available through the STEP program.

Funds must be used to support interdisciplinary groups of researchers whose research targets an area where there is a known opportunity for obtaining competitive public or private funding. The outcome expected is submission of a proposal for center, program project or other large-scale research grant for three or more years. (Exceptions may be considered in unique circumstances.)

Funds may not be used for remodeling or alteration of facilities.

Faculty summer salary is limited to 2 months per summer per faculty member. Salary funds may be used for course buyout (lecturer rate), post-doctoral positions, graduate students and technical personnel for no more than a two-year period. Overloads are not allowed during the term of the award.

Maximum funding will be $50,000 per SURCI application, except in unusual circumstances, and will be provided for a two-year period. All line items are allowable and must be fully justified. Anticipated total funding available for this program: $100,000. Potential School/College cost sharing is encouraged.

Application Procedures

Please submit the following materials to the Graduate School, Internal Award Programs, Campus Box 1046:

1. Proposal Narrative not to exceed 15 pages double spaced.

2. Approval Form with signature from chairs and deans (approving budget) and potential cost sharing commitments.

3. Current and Pending Support

4. Timeline to meet projected submission date

5. Budget and Budget Justification

6. Support letters from chairs and deans

Terms and Conditions

Funds must be fully expended by date of proposed external submission. Second year funding is contingent upon submission and approval of progress report outlining successful completion of first year fiscal and programmatic objectives. The submission of a final report is required.

Review Criteria

1. Intellectual merit of the research project

2. Feasibility of project plan

3. Reasonableness of the budget

4. Potential for success in obtaining external grant funding

Review Process

Proposals will be evaluated by a faculty committee appointed by the Graduate School.


Cover Sheet

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