Bold Challenges, based in the Office of the Vice President for Research, launched its Accelerate Program last year to support the preliminary work needed to prepare for submitting proposals that have the potential to establish future initiatives and centers at U-M focused on the global challenges facing societies today.

Researchers are using the funding to cover costs associated with preliminary data collection, technical writers, workshops and support salaries. In addition to financial support, participants receive in-kind support, including team facilitation, project management, graphic design support, and proposal development and review.

The teams consist of researchers from nine U-M schools and colleges, as well as partners from peer institutions nationwide, including Boston University, Howard University and Cornell University.

Accelerate teams target grant values at least 25 times the funding they receive. The current cohort is writing proposals for grants ranging from $650,000 to $20 million from a broad spectrum of organizations, including the National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Belmont Forum and the Wellcome Trust.

“The current cohort of Accelerate researchers are advancing research related to some of the most difficult challenges affecting communities across the globe,” said Arthur Lupia, interim vice president for research and innovation. “Their work, and the support provided by Bold Challenges, exemplifies the ambitious, interdisciplinary projects the initiative aims to bolster.”

Accelerate applications are accepted on a rolling basis from teams that will soon be or are currently seeking large-scale funding opportunities. Applications for the 2024 cycle of Boost, the Bold Challenges’ program designed to connect and support researchers in the preliminary stages of large-scale projects, are due May 13.

The research projects and principal investigators for the teams that received the latest funding are:

International Network of Pathogen Prevention Biorepositories — Kelly Speer, assistant professor of ecology and evolutionary biology, LSA.