Inside Research & Funding Opportunities
06/10/2020, 11:00:01 AM
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Inside Research
News, Events and Resources for the UH Research Community
Latest News Upcoming Events Announcements Recent Grant Awards Featured Funding Ops
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Answers About Reopening Research

This week, we experienced the Phase 2 Reopening of our campus. The Phase 2 Reopening is no longer restricted to researchers. Anyone who wants to return to work on campus must first contact their department chair or supervisor. Chairs and supervisors will work with their building coordinators to ensure that the maximum occupancy, as determined in Governor Abbott’s Executive Order, is not exceeded. They will also be responsible for checking that everyone who comes on campus has completed the online HR training on AccessUH (TAP Employee Online Training).

Read More from VP Elnashai's June 9 letter to the research community

Campus News

New Material, Modeling Methods Promise Advances in Energy Storage

The explosion of mobile electronic devices, electric vehicles, drones and other technologies have driven demand for new lightweight materials that can provide the power to operate them. Researchers from the University of Houston and Texas A&M University have reported a structural supercapacitor electrode made from reduced graphene oxide and aramid nanofiber that is stronger and more versatile than conventional carbon-based electrodes.

The UH research team also demonstrated that modeling based on the material nanoarchitecture can provide a more accurate understanding of ion diffusion and related properties in the composite electrodes than the traditional modeling method, which is known as the porous media model.

Arellano, PhD Student, Awarded Grant for Climate Research in Panama

First year geology Ph.D. student Lisabeth Arellano of the University of Houston has been awarded a 2020 Graduate Student Research Grant from the Geological Society of America (GSA). Her research involves using stable water isotopes, including the triple oxygen isotope system, as hydrological tracers to study precipitation formation and inform climate modeling efforts in the Central America region. She is advised by Emily Beverly, assistant professor of sedimentary geology in UH’s Department of Earth & Atmospheric Sciences.

Startups Struggling to Pick Up the Pieces From Pandemic

There are startups struggling to keep their heads above the deluge of a pandemic-induced depression. Between 2016 and 2018, the global startup economy generated over $3 trillion. A far cry from today’s economic value. Today, startups struggle to keep operations running during the pandemic. Web companies throughout Europe have lost close to 400 billion euros during the coronavirus pandemic. Chinese venture capital investing has dipped 50% compared to everyone else. 

Upcoming Events

Online: The James Webb Telescope
Thursday, June 11
11 a.m.-noon

Online: VPR Virtual Office Hours
Friday, June 19
11:30 a.m.-Noon
Accept the Zoom invite in the VPR Virtual Office Hours channel on the Research & Innovation Teams site

Online: Optimizing Seismic in the Cloud for Performance and Cost
Thursday, June 25
11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.


Request for Proposals!

The Center for Carbon Management in Energy (CCME) at UH seeks to advance carbon management to help transform global energy markets and achieve sustainable energy development. 

Proposals are being sought to generate new transformative research concepts in carbon management. The grants will foster the development of these concepts by providing preliminary data and concept proofs, as well as build a base for significant industry and marketplace support of impactful and relevant research that will attract industry investment and result in a long-term research program.

Learn More


Limitation of Visas for Graduate Students and Researchers from the People's Republic of China

On Friday May 29, 2020, President Trump issued a proclamation, limiting the entry of nonimmigrant graduate students and researchers from the People’s Republic of China (PRC) into the U.S. on F or J visas. This applies to those who have now or in the past “received funding from, been employed by, studied at, or conducted research at or on behalf of an entity in the PRC that implements or supports the PRC’s military-civil fusion strategy.” The proclamation does not list the entities that would fall under this rule.

The proclamation currently only applies to new visas. However, it does direct the Secretary of State to review whether existing F or J visas who otherwise meet the criteria should be revoked.

The U.S Department of State press release dated June 1, 2020 stated that “[o]ur actions last Friday are a direct consequence of PRC government strategies and policies that exploit the access of some of China’s brightest graduate students and researchers, in targeted fields, to divert and steal sensitive technologies and intellectual property from U.S. institutions, taking undue advantage of our open and collaborative academic and research environment. This action will help safeguard U.S. national and economic security interests and the productivity and security of the U.S. research enterprise.”

View past announcements on the Division of Research website.

Recent Grant Awards


PI/Department: Anne McClellan, Education
Co-PI: Zenaida Aguirre-Munoz
Sponsor: Barbara Bush Literacy Foundation
Amount: $300,000

Featured Funding Opportunities

Health Science, Engineering & Technology Social Sciences, Art & Humanities Education
Image Health

Funding Agency: National Institutes of Health (NIH)
Title: National Institute of General Medical Sciences Predoctoral Institutional Research Training Grant (T32 - Clinical Trial Not Allowed)
Application Deadline: 09/25/2020

The goal of the National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS) Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) Predoctoral Institutional Research Training Grant (T32) program is to develop a diverse pool of well-trained scientists available to address the Nation’s biomedical research agenda.

Funding Agency: National Institutes of Health (NIH)
Title: NIDA Avant-Garde Award Program for HIV/AIDS and Substance Use Disorder Research (DP1, Clinical Trial Optional)
LOI Deadline: 07/13/2020
Application Deadline: 08/13/2020

The NIDA Avant-Garde Award Program for HIV/AIDS Research supports exceptionally creative scientists, who propose high-impact research that will open new areas of HIV/AIDS research in the context of Substance Use Disorders (SUD) and/or lead to new avenues for prevention and treatment of HIV/AIDS in people who use drugs (PWUD). The term “avant-garde” refers to highly innovative ideas and/or approaches that have the potential to be transformative.

Funding Agency: National Institutes of Health (NIH)
Title: Avenir Award Program for Genetics or Epigenetics of Substance Use Disorders (DP1 Clinical Trial Optional)
LOI Deadline: 09/19/2020
Application Deadline: 10/19/2020

Avenir means future in French, and this award looks toward the future by supporting early stage investigators proposing highly innovative studies. The award will support those in an early stage of their career who may lack the preliminary data required for an R01 grant, but who propose high impact research and who show promise of being tomorrow's leaders in the field.

Funding Agency: National Institutes of Health (NIH)
Title: Mid-Career Enhancement Awards to Integrate Basic Behavioral, Biomedical, and/or Social Scientific Processes
Application Deadline: 03/17/2021

This Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) invites applications from investigators who strive to expand their research trajectories through the acquisition of new knowledge and skills in the areas of basic psychological processes, sociological processes, and/or biomedical pathways—expertise that is beyond and enhances their current areas of expertise.

Funding Agency: National Institutes of Health (NIH)
Title: Genetic Analysis of Non-Human Animal Models to Understand the Genomic Architecture of Substance Use Disorders and Addictive Behaviors (U01 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)
Application Deadline: 08/21/2020

The goals of this initiative are to discover allelic variants, genomic alterations, and functional changes associated with addictive behaviors in non-human animals through systems studies that employ genetic and genomics strategies.

Funding Agency: Department of Defense (DOD-Dept of the Army)
Title: DOD Kidney Cancer, Idea Development Award
Pre-Application Deadline: 09/02/2020
Application Deadline: 09/23/2020

The FY20 KCRP Idea Development Award is intended to support innovative ideas and high-impact approaches, based on scientifically sound evidence, to move toward the KCRP vision of eliminating kidney cancer. The research project should include a well-formulated, testable hypothesis based on strong scientific rationale and a well-developed and articulated research approach relevant to active duty Service members, Veterans, other military beneficiaries, and the American public. Personnel on the proposed team should have a strong background in kidney cancer research.

Funding Agency: Department of Defense (DOD-Dept of the Army)
Title: DOD Kidney Cancer, Postdoctoral and Clinical Fellowship Award
Pre-Application Deadline: 09/02/2020
Application Deadline: 09/23/2020

The FY20 KCRP Postdoctoral and Clinical Fellowship Award supports recent doctoral or medical school graduates in pursuit of innovative, high-impact kidney cancer research during their postdoctoral and/or clinical fellowship and allows them to obtain the necessary experience for an independent career as a leader in kidney cancer research.

Funding Agency: Department of Defense (DOD-Dept of the Army)
Title: DOD Lupus, Idea Award
Pre-Application Deadline: 08/25/2020
Application Deadline: 09/23/2020

The LRP Idea Award supports innovative, high-risk/high-reward research that could ultimately lead to a critical discovery or major advancement relevant to lupus. This award mechanism supports studies that have the potential to reveal entirely new avenues for investigation.

Funding Agency: Department of Defense (DOD-Dept of the Army)
Title: DOD Lupus, Impact Award
Pre-Application Deadline: 08/25/2020
Application Deadline: 09/23/2020

The LRP Impact Award encourages applications that support the full spectrum of research projects or ideas that specifically focus on scientific and clinical lupus issues, which, if successfully addressed, have the potential to make a major impact in lupus research and/or lupus disease. Applications should include a well-formulated, testable hypothesis based on strong scientific rationale that is established through inferential reasoning and/or critical review and analysis of the literature. Inclusion of preliminary data is encouraged.

Funding Agency: Merck
Title: Investigator Studies Program
Concept Paper Deadline: Rolling

To advance science and improve patient care by supporting, through the provision of drug/vaccine and/or total/partial funding, high-quality research that is initiated, designed, implemented and sponsored by external investigators. Results will be generated and properly disseminated in peer-reviewed publications.

Image Science, Engineering, & Technology

Funding Agency: Department of Defense (Dept of the Navy)
Title: Communications and Networks Applied Research
White Paper Deadline: 08/03/2020

The goal of the Communications and Networking Program within the Office of Naval Research (ONR 311) is to support the Navy's Information Warfare vision by developing measurable advances in technology that can directly enable and enhance end-to-end connectivity and quality of-service for mission-critical information exchange among widely dispersed naval, joint, and coalition forces.

Funding Agency: Department of Defense (DOD)
Title: Naval Air Warfare Center Aircraft Division (NAWCAD) Office-Wide
White Paper Deadline: Rolling until 06/03/2021

The Naval Air Warfare Center Aircraft Division (NAWCAD) is interested in receiving white papers for Research and Development projects which offer potential for advancement and improvement of NAWCAD operations.

Funding Agency: Department of Defense (DOD)
Title: US Army Combat Capabilities Development Command Broad Agency Announcement
Concept Paper Deadline: Rolling

Our goal is to provide the American Warfighter the best equipment for the best price through research, development and engineering in the areas of:

• Combat Feeding Equipment and Systems;

• Combat Ration Research and Development (R&D);

• Warfighter Systems Technologies;

• Shelters and Life Support technologies for Contingency Basing;

• Airdrop - Advanced Personnel and Cargo Airdrop Systems;

• Textile Technologies;

• Modeling and Simulation;

• Neuroepidemiology;

• Warfighter Advanced Technologies.

• Technology Enabled Capability Demonstrations

Funding Agency: Department of Defense (DOD)
Title: Vision Aided Navigation Prototypes
White Paper Deadline: 07/02/2020

White papers should be for cutting-edge innovations that could produce discoveries with the potential for significant impacts to enable new and improved Army operational capabilities in regards to Vision Aided Navigation for dismounted soldiers.

Funding Agency: National Science Foundation (NSF)
Title: Dear Colleague Letter: NSF and DFG Opportunity for Collaborations in Advanced Manufacturing
Application Deadline: Full proposals accepted anytime

International collaborations between eligible U.S. and German institutions are invited to submit joint proposals in the areas described on the web pages for NSF's Advanced Manufacturing Program and DFG's review board 401 Production Technology.

Funding Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)
Title: Space Technology Research Institutes Appendix
Application Deadline: 08/04/2020

The Space Technology Mission Directorate is seeking to invest, via research institutes, in university-led, sustained, multi-disciplinary space technology research focused in strategic areas for transformative impact to future NASA exploration and science.

Funding Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)
Title: NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts (NIAC) Phase I
Step A Application Deadline: 07/22/2020

STMD seeks aggressive technology development efforts that may require undertaking significant technical challenges and risk to achieve a higher potential payoff. The focus of this umbrella NRA is to identify the best ideas and talents from all sectors of the aerospace enterprise to solve future technology needs while maximizing the value of the Nation’s investment.

Funding Agency: Department of Transportation (DOT)
Title: FAA Aviation Research and Development Grants
Application Deadline: 07/06/2020

The FAA is soliciting proposals for research grants and cooperative agreements to pursue the long-term growth and short-term technical needs of civil aviation.In order to streamline the application process, it is recommended that all prospective grantees submit a white paper (letter of intent) for agency technical review before complete proposal submission.

Funding Agency: Alfred P. Sloan Foundation
Title: STEM Higher Education
LOI Deadline: Rolling

The Foundation believes that increases in human welfare are largely driven by increases in our understanding and mastery of the forces of nature and society. The health of the scientific enterprise is thus an issue of fundamental concern to us. This includes the quality of scientific training and inquiry, the structure of scientific careers, the diversity of the scientific workforce, the strength of scientific educational institutions, and the openness and accessibility of scientific education and training to all.

Funding Agency: Department of Energy (DOE)
Title: Small-Scale Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Systems and Hybrid Electrolyzer Technology Development
LOI Deadline: 06/26/2020
Application Deadline: 07/08/2020

This FOA will solicit applications for multiple areas of interest and will correspond to research outlined in the Department's August 2019 Report on the Status of the Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Program” (, to Congress and could include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Small-scale (nominally 5-25 kWe) distributed generation SOFC systems.
  • Hydrogen production from Solid State Electrolyzer Cell (SOEC) systems and reversible SOFC systems including improving and validating the materials and systems required for the improving the cost, performance and reliability of systems using natural gas or coal-derived syngas as fuel.
  • Cleaning of coal-derived syngas for use as SOFC fuel and testing of single and multiple cells on syngas.
Social Science, Arts and Humanities

Funding Agency: Alfred P. Sloan Foundation
Title: Economic Institutions, Behavior, and Performance
LOI Deadline: Rolling

The purpose of the program is to support rigorous and objective research projects on U.S. economic structure, behavior, and performance whose findings inform and strengthen decision-making by regulators, policymakers, and the public.

- Behavioral Economics Applications and Foundations
- Economic Analysis of Science and Technology
- Empirical Economic Research Enablers
- Administrative Data Research Facilities

Funding Agency: National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH)
Title: Humanities Initiative
Application Deadline: 07/16/2020

Humanities Initiatives at Hispanic-Serving Institutions strengthen the teaching and study of the humanities at Hispanic-Serving Institutions by developing new humanities programs, resources (including those in digital format), or courses, or by enhancing existing ones.

Funding Agency: National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH)
Title: NEH/AHRC New Directions for Digital Scholarship in Cultural Institutions
Application Deadline: 08/18/2020

The United States’ National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), and the United Kingdom’s Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), a component body of U.K. Research and Innovation (UKRI), are accepting applications for the NEH/AHRC New Directions for Digital Scholarship in Cultural Institutions program.


Funding Agency: Foundation for Child Development
Title: Young Scholars Program
LOI  Deadline: 06/30/2020

The Foundation believes that a deeper understanding of the role of ECE professionals in enhancing young children’s early learning experiences can ultimately improve the chances for all children to reach their full potential. Scholars will become part of a growing network of the next generation of researchers whose work has the potential to strengthen the ECE workforce and improve the quality of services provided to young children and their families.

For more information about available grants, visit our Pivot system or

Lindsay Lewis | University of Houston Division of Research | | 713-743-0951


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