Pilot Grant Programs

This page is in reference to the 2016 funding cycle. The next funding cycle is anticipated 2018.

Program Name:  

ICTS Pilot Grant Program


This new pilot grant program facilitates the development of successful, high-functioning, and interdisciplinary teams by applying a wide range of methodological expertise and perspectives to a particular problem within the translational science spectrum (graphic courtesy of NCATS).

To promote the development of effective scientific teams and to increase competencies of UI faculty in team science, teams selected to submit full proposals will be required to attend a workshop developed by the ICTS on the principles of team science and strategies for creating successful teams. 


  • All members of the team will be required to participate. 
  • Teams not attending the workshop, which will be offered on several different dates, will not be eligible to submit full proposals.
  • The workshop will be open to all IX teams submitting letters of intent, even if the letters were not selected for full proposals.


  • Awards will provide $15,000 for each member of the team.
  • Teams must have a minimum of 3 members to receive a minimum total of $45,000. 
  • Teams may consist of 3 or more members, but awards will be capped at a maximum of $75,000.

Teams that receive awards will receive consultation in strategies for team success and support from a Team Science Specialist.


Project timelines cannot exceed 18 months.


1. Principal Investigator must hold UI faculty appointments. 

Note that because an important objective of the ICTS is to support engaged research with communities and other stakeholders, teams may include employees of other organizations in Iowa if that organization has a history of research partnerships with University of Iowa faculty.

2. Team members may be from the UI and/or other CTSA institutions.

3. Teams cannot have more than 2 members from any single department (or division, in the case of large departments with multiple distinct organizational units).

Proposals involving investigators from multiple colleges will be reviewed favorably, as will proposals that have a clearly defined path for future external funding involving the team, especially those proposals that may lead to the development of program project awards or other similar large multi-investigator awards.

How to Apply:

1. Submit an initial 1-page letter of intent, along with individual faculty NIH or NSF Biosketches, no later than January 19, 2016 to Nic Johnson, MBA, Program Manager.

Letter of Intent Requirements:

  • Specific Aims: Provide at least one specific aim along with brief rationale (full application will require more in-depth description).
  • Collaborators & Synergy: Provide list of contributors along with corresponding departments and the unique collaboration that the team will bring to the project.
  • Expected Significance: Provide brief description of how this project will contribute to advancing translational research (more detailed description required in full application).

2.  After the letters of intent have been reviewed by the ICTS, select teams will receive an email invitation no later than January 25, 2016, to submit a full proposal through I-CART

We anticipate 30%-40% of teams completing the full proposal will receive awards. 

Guidelines for full proposals:

These are only for those who are invited to apply after Letter of Intent review.

Deadline for submission of full proposals:

March 11, 2016. 

Full Proposal Requirements:

  • Team Science Pilot Grant Application (download from I-CART)
    • Includes Specific Aims
    • Research Strategy
    • Preliminary Data Sections
  • Proposed Budget and Justification
    • Note that pilot grant funds cannot be used to support faculty salary.  
  • Letters of Intent (previously submitted)
  • NIH Biosketches (previously submitted)


Contact Information

Dr. Joseph Zabner

Nic Johnson, MBA - administrative questions


Help the Institute for Clinical and Translational Science at the University of Iowa continue making new strides in medical research by citing the NIH CTSA program grant UL1TR002537.