Center for Studies in Demography and Ecology

CSDE seed grants provide CSDE affiliates with early support for new research initiatives. Seed grants:

  • must lay the groundwork for subsequent extramural grant applications, and the application must provide a clear explanation of how this is the case.
  • will ideally also contribute towards research products such as articles, conference papers, conferences, book manuscripts, or other scientific products.

Seed grants can support pilot research and/or working groups or other collaborations. Requests for seed grand funds may include in-kind services and money for activities that will strengthen your grant application or research product(s).

The CSDE seed grants program is supported by a Population Research Infrastructure grant from NICHD’s Population Dynamics Branch and the UW College of Arts and Sciences.

CSDE also provides matching support for UW’s PHI pilot grants. Please use CSDE’s seed grant portal to apply for those matching funds. Indicate in your application that you are requesting matching support for the PHI pilot grant. Requests must be submitted 10 days before the PHI pilot grant due date.

Seed Grant Application Tiers

There are three application tiers. Tier 1 requests are for in-kind services only and applications are accepted on a rolling basis. Tier 2 requests are for amounts up to $10k. Tier 3 requests are for amounts between $10-25k.

Update (10/4/2021): CSDE’s seed grant program will be starting up again shortly, and will include rolling deadlines when it does.  Affiliates will receive an email when we are ready to accept applications.  If you were preparing to submit a seed grant application in the near future, please contact Development Core chair Steve Goodreau (goodreau@uw.edu) to discuss.

Details about requests and application components can be found here:


  • Requests for in-kind services
  • Due dates: accepted on a rolling basis
  • Requests might be statistical or computational consultations, administrative and logistical support, computer accounts, software purchases that contribute to general good, virtual server capacity that contribute to general good, communication or webinar support, etc.
  • Application components:
    • 1-2-page proposal which includes objectives, scientific justification, proposed activities, details of requested in-kind support, and plan for how the work is part of a larger research project that will lead to, at least, one specific research product within one year from receipt of award and a grant submission for extramural funding in the next 1-3 years
    • 2-page CV or biosketch for each of the key personnel

  • Funds available up to $10k, with or without requests for in-kind research services
  • Due dates: January 15, April 15, and October 15, 2021.
  • Request types: support for an RA, course release time, conference fees, honoraria for an expert consultant to help with a grant submission, support for a working group conference, funding for pilot research, etc.
  • Requests including match commitments from other units are competitive, but matching funds are not required.
  • Application components:
    • 2-3 page proposal which includes objectives, scientific justification, proposed activities, detailed budget and budget justification, details of requested in-kind support (if applicable), and a plan for how the the pilot work will lead to a grant submission for extramural funding within 12 months of seed grant funding and a substantial research product (major paper, conference, or book project)
    • 2-page CV or biosketch for each key personnel on the team
    • Applications that include any salary support for personnel (faculty, staff or students) must include a letter from the relevant unit chair or head indicating concurrence
    • Applications that include matching support commitments should include documentation of such.

  • Funds available between $10-25k, with or without requests for in-kind research services
  • Due dates: January 15, April 15, and October 15, 2021.
  • Request types: support for an RA, course release time, conference fees, honoraria for an expert consultant to help with a grant submission, support for a working group conference, funding for pilot research, etc.
  • Requests including match commitments from other units are competitive, but matching funds are not required.
  • Application components:
    • Project abstract (250 words)
    • 3-4 page proposal which includes objectives, scientific justification, proposed activities, detailed budget and budget justification, details of requested in-kind support (if applicable), and description of a specific plan to produce one or more research products an a grant for extramural funding within 12 months of a seed grant award
    • Draft specific aims for the grant submission
    • Provide a 2-page CV or biosketch for each key personnel on the team
    • Applications that include any salary support for personnel (faculty, staff or students) must include a letter from the relevant unit chair or head indicating concurrence
    • Applications that include matching support commitments should include documentation of such.

Funding Priorities

The highest priority is given to applications that fit into any one of the many research programs of NIH’s Population Dynamics Bureau (PDB). These cover a wide range of areas of population science topics, including any of the following: 1) the role and function of adoption and kinship, 2) bio-psychosocial mechanisms, 3) data sharing, 4) demography of health, 5) family and intergenerational relations, 6) fertility and infertility, 7) life course health, 8) population composition, 9) population economics, 10) population mobility and spatial demography, 11) social and behavioral research on reproductive health


  • The focus of the research is on one or more of CSDE’s five Primary Research Areas: Demographic Measurements and Methods, Environments and Populations, Health of People and Populations, Migrations and Settlements, Wellbeing of Families and Households.
  • It is submitted by early career investigators, new investigators (those who have not held a large extramural grant as PI), or mid-career faculty who are pursuing new directions in population research.
  • It is submitted by research teams of faculty and graduate students, representing multiple disciplines.
  • It includes matching funds or in-kind services from another department or other unit.
  • It provides a specific plan for how the proposed activities will lead to a grant submission for extramural funding within one year of seed grant funding.
  • It includes collaboration between affiliates and CSDE staff, bringing staff members onto grant applications to provide needed expertise that rounds out the research team
  • It includes collaborations with CSDE graduate student trainees, proposing to support their trainee experience through RA opportunities or postdoctoral funding

Seed Grant Terms & Policy


  • Applicants must be faculty at any of UW’s campuses
  • Applicants must be a CSDE affiliate

  • Funds must be expended within one year from award date
  • For pilot research, typical budgets will include research-related travel, graduate student research assistance, summer salary, or data acquisition costs. For affiliates in state-line positions, release time is limited to one quarter and should be based on expected actual replacement cost rather than salary. A request for release time requires appointing department approval. Indirect (F&A) costs are not allowable.
  • For working groups or other collaborations, typical budgets can cover staff or RA support, travel for outside experts, and costs for meetings and conferences (please check with CSDE’s administrative staff, if your budget will include food or meals, which are admissible expenses only if they are integral to the activities of the working group). Indirect (F&A) costs are not allowable.

  • Human subjects research will need to conform to NIH standards: Refer to the NIH Definition of Humans Subjects Research page for assistance in determining whether or not your project includes human subjects.
  • If your project includes human subjects, CSDE will collect upon award:
    • A human subjects training certificate for each researcher
    • The IRB approval or waiver
    • A complete PHS Human Subjects and Clinical Trials Information form

  • Awardees must provide a final project report detailing
    • An expenditure report
    • Narrative description of progress towards the stated objectives and obstacles faced and how overcome (if relevant)
    • a descriptive list of research outputs produced
    • details on any proposals already submitted for extramural funding
    • Plans for subsequent submission of proposals for extramural funding
  • For Tier 2 and 3 applications, applicants should receive quarterly outreach from CSDE’s Development Core PI during the award period to discuss progress, and if relevant, how CSDE can provide further assistance
  • For Tier 2 and 3 applications, applicants will meet with CSDE’s Development Core PI (and other CSDE administrative faculty and staff as relevant) towards the end of the project cycle to discuss future steps.