October 18-20 | Tucson, AZ

The Research Institution GAP Fund and Accelerator Program Summit

New external collaborations highlight $1.4 million in CU Boulder Research & Innovation Seed Grants 

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October 18-20, 2023 / Tucson, AZ
The annual summit for research institution gap fund and accelerator programs, including proof of concept programs, startup accelerators, and university venture funds

The Story

The seed grant program is designed to stimulate new and exciting areas of research and creative work on campus, as reflected in the projects of the 2023 Research & Innovation Seed Grant Program winners.

About the 2023 program

 External Partnership Projects

  • Xiaoun Ding (Mechanical Engineering; Biomedical & Life Sciences): Generation of blastocyst-like structures via 3D acoustic tweezers
    Partner: Colorado Center for Reproductive Medicine
  • Virginia Ferguson (Mechanical Engineering): Why does exercise in Type 1 diabetes mellitus fail to protect bone?
    Partner: Indiana University, Colorado School of Mines, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus
  • Anne Gold (Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences, or CIRES): Teaching climate across the curriculum with CLEAN
    Partner: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
  • Leila Gomez (Women and Gender Studies): Global indigeneity and land struggle: documentary film for sustainable futures
    Partner: Marquette University, University of Konstanz (Germany), Colby College
  • Julie Lundquist (Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences): Development and field testing with Argonne National Laboratory of an Uncrewed Aerial System (UAS) simulator for mesoscale-microscale atmospheric modeling
    Partner: Argonne National Lab

The 2023 program attracted 64 proposals, which were evaluated by nine review panels.

The program and projects signify an investment in the future research and scholarly or artistic vitality of the university. Awardees come from disciplines across the university—including ventures involving interdisciplinary work that will foster collaborative interaction among faculty—as well as disciplines not traditionally connected to sponsored research.

This year’s awards include five projects spurred by a new pool of funding that encouraged external partnerships by leveraging matching funding from industry, national labs, universities, community nonprofits and others. In addition to attracting new collaborations and funding, the external partnership projects reflect the diversity of disciplines and approaches represented by the full selection of seed grants awarded in 2023.

In addition to the five external partnership projects, the 2023 awards include four new Arts & Humanities projects and three new CU Boulder Grand Challenge projects.

Long-term impact

Including the 2023 investments, the program has provided more than $16.8 million to fund 370 innovative projects across campus since 2008.  

Seed grant projects have resulted in measurable impacts including published manuscripts, artist residencies, inventions and tens of millions of additional funding dollars for CU Boulder research, scholarship and creativity.

Other seed grant impacts across campus are equally powerful. New data, partnerships and research directions are often achieved, yielding opportunities that may otherwise not be available. Funded projects also provide undergraduate and graduate students, postdoctoral scholars and other investigators with critical research development and creative work experiences.

For more information on this program and other funding opportunities, visit the Research & Innovation Office Seed Grant webpage or subscribe to the bi-weekly RIO Bulletin.

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