SERC Seed Grant Solicitation

The Ohio State University Subsurface Energy Resource Center (SERC) was established to advance and disseminate our understanding of energy resources from underground sources and the intertwined environmental and socioeconomic issues. New for this year, we are expanding the scope of our Seed Grant Solicitation to include research under the broadest umbrella of energy and environment related research. This could include, but is not limited to:

  • alternative and clean energy sources;
  • environmental and social issues as related to specific or broader energy and resource management issues;
  • economic, environmental, and social costs/benefits of energy development (alternative and fossil fuel);
  • hazard and risk assessment of different methods of energy production on various endpoints/receptors;
  • development of frameworks for managing energy development; and (f) restoration/reclamation of lands
    damaged by energy extraction.

To promote and facilitate cross‐disciplinary research and collaboration at OSU, SERC is seeking applications from OSU faculty and research staff for seed grant funding. The total expected budget is $50,000, from which we will fund 3 to 4 proposals. Priority will be given to Seed Grant proposals that demonstrate the potential to leverage the SERC funding as a first step to obtaining high return to the university (e.g., extramural funding from NSF, DOE, NIH, or foundational dollars).

To build synergy and foster cross-disciplinary collaboration at OSU, we would consider funding 1 to 2 collaborative projects in the $20,000 range. Some example metrics for this return include the development of campus-based or online courses, workshops, publication of review papers that establish avenues for future fundable research, submission of proposals for competitive funding sources, and funding obtained from proposals that were generated, in part, from seed funds (e.g., proof‐of‐principle experiment or new model leading to a viable proposal). We will also entertain proposals to support modest travel costs to attend energy‐related workshops, and proposal or project planning meetings. Conference travel will not be considered through this funding mechanism. Proposals that demonstrate cross‐campus integration and have a diversity of departmental and institutional affiliations will be evaluated highly. Cost share is not required, but it will be considered in the applications. The purpose of these funds is not to support individual research projects unless they identify proof‐of‐principle concepts that lead to a follow‐on extramural proposal.

Proposals should be submitted to Mike Kositzke ( by January 31, 2018. The SERC Management Team will review proposals and make their decision by February 15, 2018. The body of the proposal should be no longer than four pages including the narrative, figures, references and a budget. The proposal should include a title, team members and their affiliations, project summary, background, proposed work, expected outcomes and two page CVs of the PIs.

For proposals to receive serious consideration, they must demonstrate a clear relevance to energy-related issues in areas such as technological advances, environmental impacts and/or socio‐ economic issues. The funding is for one year and requires a mid‐term and final report. The final report should detail the success of the project and outline the next steps to be taken that leverage the SERC funds for any follow‐on effort.

Questions pertaining to this solicitation should be directed to Prof. David Cole, Interim Director, SERC

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