How to write an ICGEB grant proposal

What do we look for in a grant proposal? Learn more about submitting successful applications.

What we look for in a grant proposal

Proposals submitted to ICGEB should meet the following criteria:

  • address specific questions within Life Sciences
  • be concise
  • present a clear hypothesis
  • be realistic, proposing goals that can be achieved within the proposed time
  • propose original, novel studies
  • particular attention will be given to those projects addressing issues of special relevance for the host country or of specific regional interest and those presented by groups collaborating across more than one country

Proposals that are unclear or illogical, very descriptive or unrealistic in their objectives or the time proposed will not be funded.

Projects that are based on a screening approach should be accompanied by a sound and detailed follow-up plan/fallback position in case of failure of the primary screen.

Topics of interest to ICGEB

The programme provides support for research projects in:

  • basic life sciences
  • human and animal healthcare
  • industrial biotechnology
  • agricultural biotechnology
  • bioenergy

How to prepare/write your application

Make sure that you have enough preliminary data to support your application (this is an aspect that is often overlooked but that reviewers are very keen on).

Read the guidelines and the application form carefully, so that you know exactly what information is needed and how to prepare it.

Ask one of your colleagues to read your application, as you might receive useful feedback from them.

Pay attention to the following:

  • Include all the requested information on the Principal Investigator so that reviewers will be able to properly assess your proposal. The section on the papers published is particularly important.
  • Summary and abstract: These are the first sections of the research project read by the reviewers and not all the reviewers will be experts in your field of research or the techniques you propose. A concise, clear and organised text will help them to grasp/understand your project.
  • Introduction & Research project: Provide sufficient background information to enable all reviewers to understand your proposed work.
  • The originality/importance of the proposed theme should be clearly indicated. If you propose studies already carried out by other groups make sure that you indicate in which aspects/approaches your proposal differs from ongoing studies and why ICGEB should therefore fund your project.
  • Make sure that your proposal is well organised and presented in a logical manner. All the sections should fit together. Use simple, clear sentences, do not use jargon.
  • Time schedule: Be realistic in proposing your specific goals and make sure that your aims can be accomplished within the proposed time and with the resources available/requested.
  • Training Component: Training is an aspect of particular importance for ICGEB. Specify the training that will be carried out (number and qualification of potential people to be trained, techniques that will be learned, etc.).
  • Collaborations: Clearly state any established collaborations that will be part of the project and detail the contributions provided by each collaborator. A letter confirming the collaboration would be an additional asset. This section is particularly important when the PI does not have previous/strong experience in the proposed field/techniques, which will be provided by a collaborator.
  • Facilities available: Provide a detailed list of the infrastructure, personnel and equipment available in your Institution and necessary for the proposed research. Indicate if facilities provided by other Institutions/organisations will be made available. Mention any additional funding/resources that your Institute will provide for the execution of the project (e.g., support for a technician, PhD students, etc.)
  • Feasibility: Make sure that the personnel involved have the expertise to carry out the proposed research. Provide details on the expertise of the PI and of each individual member of the research team.
  • Budget: Read the guidelines carefully and list only expenses justified by the proposed research. Do not request funds for costs not covered by the grant or exceeding the limits set for the five budget categories.

For further information
CRP-ICGEB Research Grants Unit
Tel: +39-040-3757382
Email:  [email protected]