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US-Ireland R&D Partnership Programme

The US-Ireland Research and Development Partnership, launched in July 2006, is a unique initiative involving funding agencies across three jurisdictions: United States of America (USA), Republic of Ireland (RoI) & Northern Ireland (NI). Under the US-Ireland R&D Partnership programme, a ‘single-proposal, single-review’ mechanism is facilitated by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and National Institutes of Health (NIH) who accept submissions from tri-jurisdictional (USA, NI and RoI) teams to a number of their existing funding programmes.  All proposals submitted under the auspices of the Partnership must have significant research involvement from researchers in all three jurisdictions.

The overall goal of the Partnership is to increase the level of collaborative R&D amongst researchers and industry professionals across the three jurisdictions.  This collaboration aims to generate valuable discoveries and innovations which are transferable to the marketplace, or will lead to enhancements in health, disease prevention or healthcare.

The Partnership achieves its goals through tri-partite research projects in which the funding agencies fund the elements of research undertaken in their own jurisdiction. Importantly, the Partnership must add significant value to each research programme above that achievable by the PI in each jurisdiction working alone.
The following thematic areas are prioritised as important research grand challenges for the health and prosperity of the citizens of the United States, Ireland and Northern Ireland:

  • Sensors & Sensor Networks
  • Nanoscale Science and Engineering
  • Telecommunications
  • Energy & Sustainability
  • Health
  • Agriculture (new pilot theme)

As part of this funding process, the governments and relevant research funding agencies within the Partnership contribute to the research costs of researchers based in their jurisdictions.  The partner agencies in the USA are the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH).  The partner agencies in RoI are Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) and the Health Research Board (HRB), who are only involved in the Health theme.  In Northern Ireland, the Health & Social Care R&D Division (HSC R&D) supports health-related projects, while the Department for the Economy (DfE), and Invest Northern Ireland (InvestNI) support projects related to Sensors & Sensor Networks, Nanoscale Science & Engineering, Telecommunications, and Energy & Sustainability.  InvestNI and DfE support health-related projects in the area of Sensors & Sensor Networks and Nanoscale Science & Engineering.

For proposal submissions under the Agriculture pilot theme to the National Institute of Food and Agriculture [NIFA (US)], please contact the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine [DAFM (RoI)] or Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs [DAERA (NI)]. Further details on the Agriculture theme can be accessed from the webpage of the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine.



Further information on how to apply and details of the programme can be found in the specific guidance documents below.

US-IRELAND R&D PARTNERSHIP PROPOSAL TO THE NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION

The following guidance document provides details on how to apply to the programmes at the National Science Foundation under the US-Ireland R&D Partnership programme. Science Foundation Ireland manage the NSF section of the programme for RoI applicants – for further details please contact USIreland@sfi.ie

Call Document (PDF) & (Word)

Frequently Asked Questions 

US-IRELAND R&D PARTNERSHIP PROPOSAL TO THE NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH

The following guidance document provides details on how to apply to programmes at the National Institutes of Health under the US-Ireland R&D Partnership programme. Please note that for RoI applicants, Science Foundation Ireland and the Health Research Board work in partnership for applications to the NIH and have agreed to co-fund RoI applicants whose collaborative proposal is approved for funding by the NIH. SFI and HRB will jointly fund the RoI applicant at a level of 50% each, and operate a rotating administration of the programme. HRB currently manages the NIH section of the US-Ireland R&D Partnership programme for RoI applicants – for further details please contact usireland@hrb.ie

NIH Call Document (PDF) & (Word

Frequently Asked Questions (PDF) 

PLANNING GRANT

In addition, planning grants are available to RoI applicants who wish to develop a proposal with NI and US partners. The US-Ireland R&D Partnership Planning grant is a travel award to enable RoI applicants to travel to the US to meet with their partners, visit the facilities and labs of the US partner and draft the single-trijurisdictional proposal for submission to the NSF or to the NIH. This process is currently being updated. Please contact usireland@sfi.ie or usireland@hrb.ie for further details.

CENTRE-TO-CENTRE PARTNERSHIP

Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) together with the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Department for the Economy (DfE) in Northern Ireland has developed a mechanism to link SFI-funded Research Centres, NSF-funded Engineering Research Centres (link) and researchers in Centres in Northern Ireland. Further details can be found here 

DEADLINES:

INTENTION TO SUBMIT FORM

For RoI applicants preparing a joint trijurisdictional proposal for submission under the US-Ireland R&D Partnership programme to the NSF or the NIH, it is now mandatory to submit an ‘intention to submit form’. The form and details can be found in the call documents above. For applicants preparing a US-Ireland R&D Partnership proposal for submission to the National Science Foundation, please submit the intention to submit form to USIreland@sfi.ie no later than 10 weeks in advance of the full proposal deadline at NSF. For those applicant preparing a US-Ireland R&D Partnership proposal for submission to the National Institutes of Health, please submit the intention to submit form to USIreland@hrb.ie no later than 10 weeks in advance of the full proposal deadline at NIH.

DRAFT FULL PROPOSAL SUBMISSION

US-Ireland applications for submission to the NSF must be submitted to SFI (USIreland@sfi.ie) no later than 6 weeks in advance of the full proposal deadline at the NSF, or the internal deadline at the US Research Body, should one exist. This enables SFI to carry out an internal review of the proposal and seek support from the SFI Executive for the partnership proposal. If approved by the SFI Executive, a funding commitment letter is issued to the applicant for inclusion in the submission to NSF, and also to the NSF outlining SFI’s support of the proposal should it be approved for funding post international peer review.

US-Ireland applications for submission to the NIH must be submitted to HRB (USIreland@hrb.ie) no later than 6 weeks in advance of the full proposal deadline at the NIH, or the internal deadline at the US Research Body, should one exist. This enables HRB and SFI to carry out an internal review of the proposal and seek support from their management for the partnership proposal. If approved by the SFI and HRB, a funding commitment letter is issued to the applicant for inclusion in the submission to NIH, and also to the NIH outlining and HRB and SFI’s support of the proposal should it be approved for funding post international peer review.

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES

NIH Resource – Guidelines on Submitting an Application
SFI together with the National Institutes of Health (NIH) held a Grants Process Webinar in June 2014.  The focus was on grant-writing tips and an insight into review procedures at the NIH. Please click on our NIH resource page to view the webinars and presentations slides – For full details click here

NSF Resource – Guidelines on Submitting an Application
SFI together with the National Science Foundation (NSF) held a workshop in September 2014. The objectives were to give an overview of the NSF, an insight into the NSF review process and create researcher networking opportunities. Please click on our NSF resource page to view these presentations from senior NSF directors and partner funding agencies SFI & DEL NI. An overview of NSF Engineering Research Centres is provided and valuable tips are also shared from a successful applicant under the partnership programme – click here

For further information on the background of the programme, please see the publication at the following link:
http://www.sciencediplomacy.org/perspective/2014/trilateral-partnership-for-supporting-research-and-relationships