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Writing a Compelling Grant Application. Trish Lowney, PhD plowney@syr.edu 315-443-2882. Key Questions…. What: Is a grant? Why: Do you want to apply for one? When: Do you need support? How: To write a compelling application?

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writing a compelling grant application

Writing a Compelling Grant Application

Trish Lowney, PhD

plowney@syr.edu

315-443-2882

key questions
Key Questions…

What: Is a grant?

Why: Do you want to apply for one?

When: Do you need support?

How: To write a compelling application?

What: Distinguishes an award winning application from the rest of the pack?

the compelling application
The Compelling Application

Is based on a Great Idea

What is your great idea?

Who’s to say it’s great?

the compelling application1
The Compelling Application…

Presents important outcomes

What would ‘the world’ <or your domain> look like if you achieved your idea?

the compelling application2
The Compelling Application…

Uses the best approaches

What’s the best way go from the idea to the new world?

Do you have an explicit rationale for each <task>?

the compelling application3
The Compelling Application…

Has the expertise and infrastructure required for success

What people power and other resources are required by your idea and its approaches?

the compelling application4
The Compelling Application…

Answers the So What ?

Has a clearly articulated impact for the sponsor, the project team, and/or others

the compelling application5
The Compelling Application…

Is based on a Great Idea

Presents important outcomes

Uses the best approaches.

Has the expertise and infrastructure required for success

Answers the So What ??

At a reasonable (allowable..) cost

the winning application c ulmination of successful marketing campaign
The winning application Culmination of successful marketing campaign

Who is paying the bills?

Not you… the sponsor…

How do you make your case?

Followapplication instructions…

Know your audience, the reviewers, and selection process they will use

Consider reviewers’ expertise, review criteria, and the setting in developing / writing / presenting your materials

the winning application c ulmination of successful marketing campaign1
The winning application Culmination of successful marketing campaign

Clearly, concisely conveys…

Summer beach reading

Informative

While inspiring the reader to advocate for your application – This MUST be funded!

why applications don t get funded
Why applications don’t get funded

Instructions not followed

  • Returned un-reviewed
  • Raises questions in reviewers’ minds

Poorly presented

  • Dense, hard to read, not clear
  • Lacks focus, poorly organized
  • Key terms not defined, excess use of jargon
  • Writer assumes reader ‘knows what they meant’
    • Reader evaluates what is presented in the entire application, as presented
why proposals don t get funded
Why proposals don’t get funded
  • Idea not significant / important / innovative
  • Outcomes or impact incremental
  • Lack of theoretical framework
  • Approaches are not suitable, rationale not given, no consideration of challenges / alternatives
  • Not feasible
    • Essential expertise not available
    • Essential resources / infrastructure not available
    • Haven’t demonstrated ability to execute proposed approaches
    • Budget / resources inadequate for work proposed
writing tips
Writing Tips

REMEMBER: You are not along in this activity

Ask for help (mentors, chair, etc.)

Thoroughly prepare

Learn sponsor’s / programs interests

Review prior awards (avoid duplication)

Get copies of recently funded proposals

https://sushare.syr.edu/display/vfc/Sample+Awarded+Proposals

Read application / solicitation instructions

writing tips1
Writing Tips

Contact the sponsor in advance

Purpose: Your project & its approaches fit the program

  • Send a one-page summary by email (a concept paper) with estimated cost. Arrange follow up phone call.
  • If responding to specific solicitation – are there any critical points to keep in mind?? Review process: same / different?

Create a proposal development plan with deadlines

Get lots of constructive feedback before you send in… plowney@syr.edu

in two sentences everyday language
In two sentences & everyday language

Describe your idea

Describe what will be different if your idea is addressed (outcomes)

Describe why your idea and these outcomes are important(innovative, high impact, significant to whom)

slide16

Can you break down the idea / outcomes in objective or measurable manner?

  • List the expertise needed (personnel)
  • List the resources needed (other than personnel)
  • Review questions on slide #2