Provost's Fund: Faculty Research Grants Program

The Provost’s Fund for Innovation in Research is intended to provide seed funding for new research projects and resources for major planning grants. Faculty are required to leverage this funding by submitting at least one full proposal to an external federal funding agency, national foundation, or industrial source before reapplying to this program. Preference will be given to faculty working with an established or emerging group to create a nationally recognized center of excellence, faculty in the initial stages of building a research career, faculty returning to the funding arena, or faculty exploring a new research focus. Preference will be given to proposals advancing a topic relevant to the Research Pentagon and for multi-investigator proposals involving at least two units.

There are two seed funding programs: Emerging Research Grants and Big Idea Research Grants. Faculty may participate as Principal Investigator in only one (1) seed grant proposal per funding year. All programs are intended to stimulate interactions across disciplines, departments, colleges, and programs. These awards should serve as leverage for attracting additional funding. An integral part of each proposal should be to demonstrate how funding for this project will directly lead to the development of extramural funding requests.

2022-23 Awardees

Emerging Research Grants

Emerging Research Grants support innovative research in emerging areas that have the potential for continued support from external sources. Emerging Research Grants are funded at up to $10,000 for one year, and typically involve a single investigator.

Proposals should describe the current research problem, issues that need to be addressed, applicant’s qualifications, and the importance of the research problem to the university. Narratives should include defined deliverables that address projected research output (scholarship and/or proposals), opportunities for future funding and impact on the relevant research community.

Big Idea Research Grants

Big Idea Research Grants are designed to foster the development of multi-investigator, interdisciplinary research teams for the purpose of securing center-scale, multi-year funding from federal, industrial, or philanthropic sponsors in emerging research areas aligned with university priorities. Proposals for Big Idea grants should be focused on one of the Research Pentagon topic areas. While proposals whose research domain fall outside of the above areas will be accepted for review, funding priorities will be given to the Pentagon areas and proposals involving at least two colleges or schools.

Principal investigators should develop proposals with the following goals in mind:

  • seed innovative research efforts in areas that are fundable priorities for federal, industrial, or philanthropic sources
  • secure long-term center-scale funding from external sources to support such research
  • engage LSU faculty in team scholarship and collaborative research

The Big Idea Research Grants are established in three phases, each requiring an increased commitment from faculty researchers towards the ultimate goal of center-scale funding and research. .

  • Phase 1: up to $10,000 for one (1) year for the purpose of organizing the research team, establishing a local community of scholars, identifying applicable funding programs, and building a basic infrastructure for that group.
  • Phase 2: up to $75,000 for one (1) year for developing preliminary data, creating a long-term research agenda, developing proposals for external grant programs, and establishing the research team within the broader research community.
  • Phase 3: up to $125,000 per year up to two (2) years for the purpose of developing and submitting center-scale grant proposals, publishing/presenting results in peer-reviewed journals and conferences, and engaging the long-term scholarship agenda. Phase 3 recipients should have previously held a Phase 2 FRG Big Ideas award, or should already have a well-established research team/community.

Proposals should describe the current research problem, issues that need to be addressed, the applicants’ qualifications, and the importance of the research problem to the university. All proposals should also include clearly defined deliverables that address targeted funding programs & agencies, a five (5) year research agenda, impact on the relevant research community, data management plans, and how the project addresses strategic needs of the department, college, and university.


All members of the faculty who hold the rank of assistant, associate, or full professor (tenured, tenure-track or research) are eligible to apply for a Faculty Research Grant.

Eligibility exceptions are as follows:

  • Persons known to be in their last year of campus employment are not eligible.
  • Faculty who hold only adjunct titles are not eligible, but may be listed as team members.
  • Faculty on leave without pay or on sabbatical are not eligible unless approved as an exception by the Vice President for Research & Economic Development. A letter requesting an exception must be included in the application.
  • Faculty who currently hold an unexpired Faculty Research Grant award are not eligible to apply.

Eligibility Limitations

Faculty members may only be lead PI in one (1) FRG proposal, regardless of the type of proposal (emerging or big idea).



The Faculty Research Grant Program applications should be submitted through the LSU Internal Grants & Competition Portal.