Incubating Interdisciplinary Initiatives (I 3) Awards

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2018 Incubating Interdisciplinary Initiatives (I 3) Awards


The Incubating Interdisciplinary Initiatives (I 3) award program fosters new interdisciplinary research projects at UO. Applicants must clearly and convincingly demonstrate that the proposed project represents a new research direction in an area likely to generate extramural funding. Funding under this program is to be used to successfully compete for extramural funds to support the project in the long term.

Research proposals should rely on collaborative partnerships across departments and colleges at UO. I 3 partnerships should emerge from shared research interests and needs and be developed in light of external funding opportunities, UO’s institutional strengths, academic priorities, and institutional history. Partnerships may include external institutions of strategic importance.

Preference will be given to proposals that:

  1. Have significant scientific or scholarly merit
  2. Have strong potential for extramural funding
  3. Represent a new direction for the lead faculty member or research team 4. Build or strengthen cross-disciplinary research partnerships

Scope of the Award / Use of Funds:

  • I 3 Awards provide up to $50,000 in support. The award supports expenses over a period that may not exceed 24 months from time of award.
  • I 3 funds must be used to support interdisciplinary groups of researchers. The expected outcome is submission of a proposal for extramural funding for a center, program, or large-scale research grant that involves multiple faculty investigators for an award period of three or more years. External partnerships and collaborations are encouraged.
  • Funds may be used for allowable costs necessary to plan the research project, consistent with university and state rules, for travel, equipment, supplies, contractual services, and core/shared user facility use. Funds also may be used for salary to support the project efforts of graduate and undergraduate students and/or technical personnel under the supervision of project investigators, where data collection is required as a part of the effort to enhance competitiveness. I 3 funds may NOT be used to replace current funding from another source; for renovation, remodeling, or alteration of research laboratories or core/shared facilities; to fund or replace faculty salary or stipend, or for instructional release/course buyout.
  • Applicants must identify one or more external sources of funding and specify a timeline for a proposal submission that will be pursued as a result of an I 3 Award.
  • Applicants are encouraged to retain experts that can contribute to your project and strengthen your eventual application for external funding. Budgets may include funds to support a planning workshop, faculty retreat, to host a distinguished speaker who will help you initiate your project, or to travel to visit a program officer to discuss your project.
  • Recipients are expected to actively pursue external funding and to submit a proposal for external funding as described in the timeline within 24 to 36 months of receipt of an I 3 Award.


Proposals are due March 5, 2018. Notification of awards will take place in May. Projects should begin no earlier than July 1, 2018. Final reports are due by July 31, 2020.


Faculty members with the rank of Assistant Professor or above OR non-tenure- track faculty who hold a full time Research Associate/Senior Research Associate or any rank of the Research Professor appointment (1.0 FTE) and will hold a UO appointment during the academic year of the research award. Emeritus, Courtesy, Visiting, Instructor and adjunct appointee ranks are ineligible.

Only one proposal per applicant will be accepted in any application cycle. Faculty members may submit only ONE application as principal investigator, but may serve as a team member on other proposals.

Faculty members funded through the I 3 program are not eligible to compete in future grant cycles for three years from the activation date of the successful proposal.

Review Process:

All applications will be reviewed by faculty reviewers, who will make recommendations to the Vice President for Research & Innovation. Final determination of funding will be made by the Vice President for Research & Innovation.

The deadline for submission is March 5, 2018, at 5:00 pm.

Electronic submission of proposals is required. Paper applications will not be accepted.

Online application

If you have any questions, please email

Proposal Components:

  1. Abstract, appropriate for a broad, non-technical audience (250 word limit)
  2. Proposal that describes the intellectual merit of the project and its potential for external funding (3 pages). Include the following elements: 
    1. Introduction 
      1. Provide a background or rationale for the project, including significance
      2. Identify current status of the research at UO, including programmatic strengths, competitiveness for funding, and milestones or outcomes
      3. Describe project’s longer-term goals and shorter term objectives
    2. Timeline for submission of external funding proposal
      1. Identify external funding agency and program and submission deadlines, including a description of how this project fits into the applicant’s long term plan for program development
      2. Describe the fit between the proposed project and external funding priorities/opportunities
    3. ProposedPlan
      1. Describe project’s expected outcomes
      2. Describe project methodology
      3. Identify specific research or scholarly activities to which funds will be applied and how these investments will enhance the competitiveness of the project for external funding
      4. Specifically describe:
        1. The interdisciplinary collaboration
        2. How the proposal topic aligns with specific external funding opportunities
        3. How the I 3 grant funding will enable the team to successfully obtain future external support
  3. References; limited to 1 additional page
  4. Biographical sketch or CV for all faculty involved in the project (limited to 2 pages for each faculty member).
  5. Current and pending support: list yearly direct funds for each grant; include any awards you have received from the University of Oregon.
  6. Budget and budget justification (1-2 pages)
  7. Letter of support from Department Head/Center or Institute Director and/or Dean(s) describing how the application supports the unit/college mission/goals and detailing/authorizing the commitment (if any) for matching support designated for the project.


A final report is required and due to Research Development Services no later than one month (30 days) after the conclusion of funding.

Questions about the I 3 program, application, or submission process may be directed to Research Development Services,

Previous Award Recipients


2018 Awards:

  •  “Neural Mechanisms Underlying Second Language Learning"
    • Santiago Jaramillo (biology)
    • Melissa Baese-Berk (linguistics)
  • “Automated Segmentation of Complex Biological Imaging Datasets"
    • Raghuveer Parthasarathy (physics)
    • Yashar Ahmadian (biology)
  • “Prenatal Nutrition, Adiposity and Stress: Modifiable Targets for the Biobehavioral Development of the Infant"
    • Elinor Sullivan (human physiology)
    • Jennifer Ablow (psychology)
  • “Gendered Justice: Addressing Violence Against Women in Guatemala and the U.S.”
    • Lynn Stephen (anthropology)
    • Erin Beck (political science)

2017 Awards:

  • "Lessons Learned from the Oakridge Buying Club: Strategies for Food Access Programs in Rural Communities"
    • Tasia Smith, Counseling Psychology

2016 Awards:

  • "Personalized Thermal Comfort in the Built Environment"
    • Christopher Minson, Human Physiology
  • "Live Imaging of the Gut-Brain Axis: Examining the Intersection between Neurons and Inflammation"
    • Annie Powell, Biology
  • "Neuroimaging Approaches to Studying the Neurodevelopmental Effects of Malnutrition in SE Asia"
    • Jeffrey Measelle, Psychology
  • "Neural Circuit Mechanisms Underlying Speech Processing"
    • Michael Wehr, Psychology, Institute of Neuroscience

2015 Awards:

  • "A Novel Tool for Perceptual and Cognitive Assessment"
    • Dare Baldwin, Psychology
    • Terry Takahashi, Biology
  • "Bridging Architecture and Neuroscience: Quantifying Impacts of Spatial Daylight Type and Quality on Task Performance, Stress and Stress-recovery - An Experimental Investigation"
    • Ihab Elzeyadi, Architecture
  • "A Virtual Laboratory in 'In Silico' Discovery of Polymeric Materials (Project POLIS)"
    • Marina Guenza, Chemistry and Biochemistry

2014 Awards:

  • "TrackTown USA Learning and Healthy Outcomes Curriculum"
    • Hank Fien, Center on Teaching and Learning
    • Edward Kame'enui, Center on Teaching and Learning
    • Ben Clarke, Center on Teaching and Learning
    • Nancy Nelson Walker, Center on Teaching and Learning
    • Sarah Crabtree, Center on Teaching and Learning
    • Chris Minson, Human Physiology
    • Paul Swangard, Warsaw Sports Marketing Center
    • Mike Hahn, Bowerman Sports Science Clinic
  • "Measurement and Interventions to Improve Self-Regulation Following Traumatic Brain Injury"
    • Deborah Ettel, Center on Brain Injury Research & Training
    • Pranjal Mehta, Psychology, Psychoneuroendocrinology Lab
    • Ann Glang, Center on Brain Injury Research & Training
    • Laurie Powell, Center on Brain Injury Research & Training
  • "Tackling Internet Privacy from Technical, Social, Economical, and Legal Perspectives"
    • Jun Li, Computer and Information Science
    • Kevin Butler, Computer and Information Science
    • Dejing Dou, Computer and Information Science
    • Xintao Wu, Software and Information Systems, UNC Charlotte
    • Colin Koopman, Philosophy
    • Ben Yang, Lundquist College of Business
    • Eric Priest, School of Law
  • “John Templeton Interdisciplinary Research Network for Study of Quantum Coherence in Biologically Inspired Engineered Molecular Systems”
    • Michael Raymer, Physics
    • Andrew H. Marcus, Chemistry and Biochemistry

2013 Awards:

  • “Fractal Interconnects as a Generic Interface to Neurons"
    • Richard Taylor, Physics, Materials Science Institute
    • Darren Johnson, Chemistry, Materials Science Institute
    • Miriam Deutsch, Physics, Oregon Center for Optics
    • Cris Niell, Biology, Institute of Neuroscience
  • "Drivers of the Beetle Empire: Understanding the Coupling of Climate Change and Forest Management in Bark Beetle Outbreaks"
    • Christopher Bone, Geography
    • Patrick Bartlein,  Geography
    • Daniel Gavin, Geography
    • Allen Malony, Computer and Information Science
    • Cassandra Moseley, Institute for a Sustainable Environment
  • "The Roles of Arts Programs in Fostering an Organizational Culture of Patient-Centered Care and an Environment of Healing in Hospitals and Hospices"
    • Patrick Dewey, Arts and Administration
    • Pranjal Mehta, Psychology
    • Josh Snodgrass, Anthropology
    • Kristin Yarris, International Studies
    • Laura Zaerr, School of Music and Dance
  • "Positive and Restorative Investment in Discipline Reform in Education: Integrating Restorative Discipline (RD) and School-wide Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (SWPBIS) to Reduce Inequitable Discipline and Improve School and Life Outcomes for Students from Non-White Backgrounds” 
    • Jeffrey R. Sprague, Special Education and Clinical Services, Institute on Violence and Destructive Behavior
    • John A. Inglish, College of Education
    • Erik Girvan, School of Law
    • Claudia G. Vincent, Institute on Violence and Destructive Behavior, College of Education