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RGI Award Selection Process

The RGI employs a two-stage selection process.

Stage 1—Scientific/Scholarly Review

In Stage 1, all proposals are externally reviewed for scientific/scholarly merit according to the following criteria:

  • Quality of Proposal: Excellence and novelty of concept; appropriateness of approach or methodology; clarity of project plans; degree of scientific/intellectual merit.

    Rating scheme:
    1. Exceptionally strong with essentially no weaknesses.
    2. Extremely strong with negligible weaknesses.
    3. Very strong with only some minor weaknesses.
    4. Strong but with numerous minor weaknesses.
    5. Strong but with at least one moderate weakness.
    6. Some strengths but also some moderate weaknesses.
    7. Some strengths but at least one major weakness.
    8. A few strengths and a few major weaknesses.
    9. Very few strengths and numerous major weaknesses.
  • Return on Investment: Probability of securing extramural funding or engaging in commercialization; potential for self-sustainability after the seed investment phase. The expected return is three times the requested seed funding.

    Rating scheme:
    High Outstanding potential outcomes; ranks in the top 10% in its field
    Medium Average potential outcomes; ranks in the next 40% in its field
    Small Low potential outcomes; ranks in the bottom 50% in its field
  • Risk of Failure: Availability of necessary skills and experience; likelihood of completing the project plan within the given timeframe.

    Rating scale:
    Low Low failure risk; highly likely to achieve its milestones and objectives; ranks in the top 10%.
    Medium Medium failure risk; likely to achieve its milestones and objectives; ranks in the top 40%.
    Risky High failure risk; unlikely to achieve its milestones and objectives; ranks in the bottom 50%.

Names of potential reviewers are submitted by applicants in compliance with conflict of interest guidelines. Conflict of interest for the RGI program is defined as any evidence of the following relationships:

  • Known family relationship.
  • Business or professional partnership.
  • Past or present association as thesis advisor or thesis student.
  • Collaboration on a project or on a book/article/report/ within the last 48 months.
  • Co-editing a journal, compendium, or conference proceeding within the last 24 months.

The Graduate School reserves the right to identify other qualified referees. Selections are made based on the person’s expertise, breadth, independence, past experience with proposal review, and successful funding record. Reviews must contain evaluative comments to be accepted.

Stage 2—Award Selection

In Stage 2, funding decisions are made by campus leadership taking into account final ratings and review comments.

Additional considerations:

  • For applicants who have past RGI awards, performance in meeting milestones and deliverables will be a significant factor in the funding decision.
  • For applicants who have extramural awards, preference will be given to those who have made regular expenditures on the awards.
  • Awards will not be given to those on notice of non-retention, or those who have accepted offers at other institutions.
  • Collectively, the awards will comprise a balanced portfolio across disciplines.
2014-'15 RGI funding cycle
Online application available Late August 2013
Submission deadline Monday, October 7, 2013; 9:00 a.m.
Final review January-February, 2014
Award announcement Late April 2014
Award letters sent Mid-April 2014
Funds available July 2014

Page last updated on: 03/21/2014