The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) is seeking applications for a five-year, $70 million cooperative agreement with a U.S. university to establish a strong international network to solve pressing development challenges through research. The university-led network will work with USAID to engage academics and stakeholders in identifying and refining critical development research questions. The project will fund research that engages universities, policymakers, and civil society to achieve maximum development impact. Finally, the network aims to increase the human and institutional capacity of higher education institutions in low- and middle-income countries – with the aim of forging stronger ties between U.S. and low- and middle- income country universities.
USAID estimates that approximately 30-40 percent of the yearly core funding will be dedicated to supporting recipient-identified development research questions as well as the subsequent design, solicitation, and execution of research activities. The remainder of the core funds will cover operating, management, and implementation costs of the grant, including the management and support of a broad international network of researchers and higher education institutions responding to key research questions. The grant is an exciting opportunity for higher education institutions and a result of advocacy efforts on behalf of higher education through APLU’s International Advocacy Coordinating Committee.
Questions about USAID’s request for applications are due by December 20, 2017. While individual questions are encouraged, APLU is also compiling questions to submit on behalf of all members so they can be submitted without identifying submitting institution. Please contact Samantha Alvis, APLU’s Director of International Development and Programs, by this Friday and she will clarify and compile questions before submitting them to the agency. Concept Notes are due to USAID on January 24, 2018.