Opportunity ID & Assessment


On this page:

Get Started
Determine Fit
Find Funded Research

Get Started

The first step in the proposal lifecycle is to identify funding opportunities and assess their “fit” with your proposed research. New to finding funding? Visit Find Funding for information on internal (UA) funding opportunities, external funding sources, and search engines, databases, and tools to help you identify funding opportunities.

Determine Fit

After identifying a funding opportunity (or several), read it/them through carefully to assess how well your proposed research fits with the solicitation. Determine the “fit” based on:

  • the information in the funding opportunity announcement,
  • the sponsor’s website, and
  • by looking at what has already been funded by the program.

Helpful documents to look for on sponsor websites include agency strategic plans, decadal surveys, reports, and other strategic documents. Several of these are provided below.

The following are key questions to ask when determining fit, and links to help you find funded research.

  • Am I/is my institution eligible?
  • Does the program fund projects in my research area? (See Find Funded Research below)
  • Does my proposed research align with the mission and priorities of the agency, directorate/institute, and program?
  • Does my proposed research align with the topic and scope of the RFP/FOA/PA/BAA*?
  • Does my proposed research “match” the level of innovation (e.g., incremental vs. high risk/high reward) reflected in the RFP/FOA/PA/BAA?
  • Do I and my collaborators have the track record (e.g., joint publications, preliminary data) and expertise required to be competitive?
  • Do I and my collaborators have access to the facilities/resources required to accomplish the work?

*RFP: Request for Proposals; FOA: Funding Opportunity Announcement; PA: Program Announcement; BAA: Broad Agency Announcement

Find Funded Research

One of the best ways to determine if your research fits with a particular program/solicitation is to see what has been previously funded. Most funding agencies provide this information. Several links to searchable award databases are provided below.

Having performed this due diligence, consider contacting your program officer to gather additional information on the FOA, program priorities, and fit with your proposed research. Note: We strongly encourage that you NOT cold call your program officer. For help on how to prepare, visit Contacting Program Officers.

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