Funding Opportunity: Request for Proposals

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November 14, 2017

With generous support from the Laura and John Arnold Foundation and from local community supporters, we launched, in January 2016, the Economic Self-Sufficiency Policy Research Institute. ESSPRI funds policy-oriented research on public policies designed to encourage economic self-sufficiency in the longer run and, through proactive outreach, will communicate our research to policymakers.

To that end, the Institute has support for up to four graduate students as ESSPRI Fellows for 2018, with support up to $3,000 per student. Although the focus is on economics, the awards are not restricted to Ph.D. students in economics.  Students are encouraged to develop and submit original research proposals that have the overarching goal of informing policymakers about the effects of policies on the ability of individuals and families to become economically self-sufficient in the longer run, with minimal dependence on government support. Thus, the emphasis of ESSPRI, and your research projects, should be less on the short-term distributional effects of policy, and more on what policy does to reduce barriers to labor market participation and to increase opportunities, skills, and incomes.

The awards for graduate students can provide support and/or cover research expenses. Preference will be given to proposals that will be used to develop a larger proposal for external support (with administrative support provided by ESSPRI), but that is not a prerequisite. High-quality, policy-relevant research is the most important factor.

In the Economics Department, awards will not reduce eligibility for summer research proposals or reduce any other support. (I cannot speak for other departments.)

Recipients of this support will be designated "ESSPRI Fellows," and will be asked to participate in an event with our community supporters where they will briefly discuss their research, to provide the community supporters with a draft paper, and to work with ESSPRI to develop a policy brief (a short document) describing the research and its policy implications. Half the award will be paid out early, and half after completion of a draft paper, the presentation, and the policy brief.

To be considered for this award, please submit to me a 4-5 page proposal and a brief budget, as well as a letter of support from at least one faculty member.

Proposals are due Dec. 8, and recipients will be notified very soon thereafter.

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