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Research Development

Our Mission

Our mission is to advance UCSB faculty research by facilitating access to extramural funding – contracts, grants, and awards. The environment in which faculty seek research support has never been at once so diverse and so competitive. At RD we work to make sure that faculty have available all the tools for success – from funding source information, proposal review, and writing workshops – to mock panel reviews and site visit preparation for strategic Campus initiatives. By anticipating recurring solicitations, we alert faculty to upcoming major collaborative opportunities requiring significant advance planning.

Our staff is on-call, when needed, to provide our best advice and resource materials, including sample proposals and funding databases. We provide agency- and foundation- specific information that can greatly simplify matching faculty research goals to the most receptive funding source, as well as helping formulate a proposal that speaks to that particular review process.

The Research Development Team

Meredith Murr, Director

Meredith Murr received her Ph.D. from the department of Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology at UCSB in the laboratory of Professor Daniel Morse in 2006.  Meredith holds a B.A. in chemistry from Boston University and M.A. in chemistry from University of Texas at Austin, and has several years of industry experience at pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies.  During her graduate work at UCSB, she participated in the Mirzayan Science and Technology Policy Fellowship at the National Academies in Washington, DC.  Prior to joining the Office of Research in 2010, Meredith worked in the Center for Science and Engineering Partnerships at UC Santa Barbara, developing professional development programs for graduate students and postdoctoral scholars.

Contact for: Large Center/Program Planning, Limited Submissions, Red Team Reviews, PROWESS, Proposal Review, Workshops, New Faculty Orientation

Barbara Walker, Director of Research Development for the Social Sciences, Humanities and Fine Arts

Barbara Walker has a Ph.D. and M.A. in Geography from UC Berkeley and a B.A. in Anthropology and African Studies from UCLA.  She is a former NSF ADVANCE Fellow who is involved in several initiatives to promote broader participation in higher education, including an Elsevier New Scholars Grant to develop a Team Science leadership training program for the UC system, specifically aimed at increasing diversity on scientific teams.  Prior to joining the Office of Research, Walker was a NSF Post-Doctoral Scholar in the Departments of Geography and Anthropology at UCSB.  Her past and current research focuses on the political ecology of marine resources in Ghana, French Polynesia, and California, which has been funded by the National Science Foundation, the MacArthur Foundation, and NOAA Sea Grant, among others.  She was a Founding Board Member the National Organization of Research Development Professionals (NORDP).

Contact for: Proposal Review for Social Sciences, Humanities, Fine Arts, and Education, ISBER Grant Programs, Funding Consultation, Sample Proposals, Workshops, New Faculty Orientation

Jeff Sczechowski, Director of Research Development for Science and Engineering

Jeff Sczechowski received his B.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Chemical Engineering from the University of Colorado Boulder and his M.S. in Chemical Engineering from North Carolina State University. Prior to joining the Office of Research in 2015 he worked at CU-Boulder as the Associate Director for the Office of Industry Collaboration and as the Assistant Dean for Research Opportunities in the College of Engineering and Applied Science. Before working at CU-Boulder he was a Program Manager for STMicroelectronics' Central R&D Division in Crolles, France.  Prior to working for ST, he was an Associate Professor of Environmental Engineering at Cal Poly (SLO).

Contact for: Proposal Review for Science and Engineering, Large Center/Program Planning, Funding Consultation, Sample Proposals, Workshops, New Faculty Orientation

Kelly Pillsbury, Research Development Analyst

Kelly Pillsbury has her M.A. in Social Entrepreneurship and Change and B.A. in English, both from Pepperdine University. She worked for two years in the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs at Pepperdine before moving to UCSB to join the Research Development Team.

Contact for: COS Pivot training, funding opportunities searches, Funding Resources Newsletter, Sample Proposals, Seminars CalendarProfiles in Research, Undergraduate Research website & blog


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Updated: June 19, 2015.