Research Seed Grant Competition

The 2024 Seed Grant Competition is now closed for applications. Please contact if you have any questions.

C2C is inviting applications for research seed grants for projects that begin during the summer of 2024. The grants will support Northeastern faculty, post-doctoral students, or PhD students engaging in research-practice partnerships to conduct research with a city agency, state department, or community-based organization with the goal of using research evidence to change a policy or practice. The goal of the seed grant funding is to aid in the development of projects with the goal of providing proof of concept to seek additional support from either internal or external sources.

Proposals should seek to address an urgent but long-standing policy challenge facing cities and states in areas such as housing, crime, public health, and workforce development, though we accept applications on all themes relevant to cities and communities. Special consideration will be given to projects that examine or address questions with regional significance at one of our global university system locations. For all funded projects, a summary of the findings will be published on the C2C web portal when the project is completed.

Applicants may request up to $5,000, which can be used for project-related expenses such as travel, purchase of data or software, materials, participant recruitment, and funding for students as research assistants. In rare instances, these funds may be used to purchase hardware if the hardware is necessary for the development of project. Neither faculty salary nor faculty course releases are supported under this program. Most projects will be funded for six months; all unexpended funds will be returned to C2C after 12 months (from date of notification).

Applicants will be required to demonstrate a commitment by their home department to provide support for their project, in any appropriate form: faculty time, promotion, convening, matching funds, etc. Applicants will be required to submit a letter from a sponsor at their home department detailing this support. C2C has a strong commitment to diversity–we encourage applications from persons with a wide range of backgrounds and experiences.

Frequently Asked Questions

Applying for a Research Seed Grant

The application includes a brief proposal, unit head endorsement, and a curriculum vitae.


A three page narrative (single-spaced with 12 point font and 1” borders) that includes:

  • a strong description of the rationale and potential scholarly and practical impact of the proposed project;
  • the external partners that will be engaged during the course of the project and where possible, a letter of support;
  • an explanation of the data collected or used and the methodology for the proposed project;
  • an outline of a specific work plan that connects to the budget narrative as well as a description, if appropriate, of how students will be involved in the project;

A detailed budget (no more than $5,000) and budget narrative (no more than two paragraphs) that specifies each requested expenditure; Please be sure to adhere to University standard pay rates, estimated at $17 per hour for most undergraduate positions and $20 per hour for positions held by Masters students;

A brief endorsement from your unit head; students should also include an endorsement from a faculty mentor who will oversee the project.

An updated curriculum vitae

Repeat Awards

This program exists to provide one-time support to help researchers develop proof of concept for projects seeking further internal or external support. Therefore, a successful applicant will generally not be re-funded for the same project from this initiative. Researchers who are not funded in one cycle are eligible to submit an application for funding during the next round.

Funding Timeline and Final Report

Applicants will be notified by March 8, 2024 and awards will begin no earlier than May 1, 2024. All funds are expected to be used during the 12 month period. All awardees are expected to submit a final report within one year of project funding. This report should include a description of project activities and accomplishments, impact on policy or practice, barriers faced and strategies to overcome them, any dissemination activities including papers or conference presentations, and finally a description of external funds applied for and notice of which have been received. This report should be sent to the C2C director no later than April 30, 2025.