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Proposal Development Resources


Proposal Draft Review

Our Proposal Development Team is composed of individuals with PhDs in Science, Engineering, and Social Science, all who have successful track records in writing funding proposals. We read and comment on any proposal draft brought to us.  We often recommend a faculty colleague to provide a sub-discipline level evaluation as well. Our review offers an agency-awareness as well as the science-generalist perspective often represented on peer-review panels. The earlier Research Development is consulted, the more effective our review can be, but we will do our best in whatever time is available. Our suggestions are put forward for PI adoption or rejection. The PI makes all decisions on revisions and sends the proposal directly to the Sponsored Projects Office for submission.

If you plan to send Research Development a summary statement or project description, please contact any member of the Research Development team.

This service is separate and distinct from the required review by the Sponsored Projects Office (SPO) as part of its process of formal submission to the funding agency or foundation.

Research Development Proposal Review
  • Content
  • Strategy
    • Research Design
    • Formatting
    • Fit with agency priorities
    • Clarity and readability
Sponsored Projects Proposal Review
  • Regents' representative
  • Compliance-Based Review
  • Assures that University, state and federal policies and campus procedures are followed

Red Team Reviews

For proposals produced or begun during PROWESS or the Proposal Writing Seminar Series, our major proposal-development workshops for new faculty, Research Development provides a “Red Team Review,” a mock review of the draft and a live faculty panel to simulate the likely discussion at the target agency. Red Team reviews are also offered for larger strategic initiatives. Red Teams are often requested by senior faculty who are proposing to new agencies or programs to make sure that they have adjusted to the particular format and perspective required.

Strategic Planning for Major Initiatives

Many agencies and foundations have come to realize that the most interesting, and most pressing, problems require a broad interdisciplinary attack. UCSB is especially well-positioned to pursue such programs, given its structure and academic culture. Few institutions have such a low barrier to cooperation across research-center, departmental or college boundaries. When such opportunities are expected or announced, Research Development works to bring interested faculty together so that they can discuss and plan the Campus approach. Once PI(s) are identified and proposal activity is underway, Research Development staff are available to comment and organize Red Teams as needed.

For more information, please see our Multidisciplinary Partnering page.


Sample proposals

The Office of Research has samples of successful proposals for a variety of funding agencies. Programs for which we have samples include:

Please contact Kelly Pillsbury at for information on receiving access to sample proposals.

Campus Resources

Many proposals require a statement about UCSB's research climate and how research is integrated with education. We are developing descriptions that may be useful as proposal development progresses. We currently have templates that you may adapt for your specific proposal needs including:

Agency Specific Resources

Each funding agency has unique missions, application structures, submission requirements, and review processes. Use the following links to learn more about some of the major federal funders of UCSB research.

Broader Impacts

Many funding agencies ask PIs to demonstrate how their research project impacts society; this is often termed broader impacts. There are many ways to fulfill this requirement, including integration of research with teaching and learning, broadening the participation of underrepresented groups, and enhancing infrastructure for research and education. The National Science Foundation created a document with a list of representative activities for their broader impact requirement.

The UCSB campus is home to a wealth of education and outreach programs that target local schools. PIs can explore collaborations with these existing programs to fulfill broader impact requirements in their research proposals. For science, engineering, and mathematics there are over 50 programs that reach K-12 students, community college students, and undergraduates. An inventory of programs can be found here: UC Santa Barbara K-14 Science Education and Outreach Programs

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