Applicant Questions

Applicant Questions

1. Could I work on the project while still teaching full time in my university?

2. I am considering applying for the DRG Research and Innovation Grant. I have a question about hiring staff – the APS states that staff "Need to be identified by name' (p. 7). One possible use of a grant would be to hire research assistants, whose names I would not know until I had received a grant and advertised for the position. How should I deal with this requirement?

3. This is to inquire on the eligibility criteria to be able to compete for this call for a proposal on a research grant. Would USAID staff (e.g. FSO) be deemed ineligible to participate as part of the research team?

4. I am currently working on a research project that is relevant to the DRG Center APS and would like to apply for funding—is this possible?

5. Can non-US organizations apply?

6. As co-PIs, we are at two different institutions and would like to know how to best handle this in our application.  Can we submit a collaborative proposal?  If so, are there guidelines about how we should structure our application materials to do this?  For example, do we submit a single proposal with separate budgets for each co-PI?  Is there a way for us to indicate that our submissions are linked when we forward them from our Research Offices/Sponsored Programs?

7. On the budget template, there is a place for the names of Research Assistants and Consultants.  At this point, we have an idea of the graduate students and consultants that we might hire, but that may change in the future based on student availability and demands within our respective departments.  Do we need to include the names of these individuals in our budget?  If so, does that mean that we are required to hire those same individuals once the funds are allocated, or can we change them later?

8. The eligibility requirement states that there is required to be a legally registered entity.  My nonprofit research center has applied for a 501(c)3 status -- is a 501(c)3 status required for submission if it is still awaiting approval?

9. Can we use funds from a DRG Grant for course buyouts at our institutions?

10. Can we use funds from a DRG Grant for summer salary for the co-PIs?

11. Hi, I have a question regarding the budget: I would like to include a course "buy-out" into the budget request to free some time to be able to work on the grant. Does USAID have a policy that discourages course buy-out expenses?

12. For the application, can you include money for another "in country" (non U.S.) organization to help collect data?  If so, do you need a bid from them to include in the budget?

13. The DRG grant opportunity is likely to be of interest to several of the regional departments at [our organization]. I wondered if more than one application is allowed from the same organization, provided the substance of the proposed project is different?

14. I understand that USAID does not fund research on all the countries in Latin America, the region I research.  Are Argentina and Peru among the countries eligible for this particular grant?

15. [Our organization] is very interested in this call for proposals. Is there a limit to how many applications one organization can submit?

16. Hi I have a quick question about the budget construction for the grant. Are the indirect costs included as part of the $100k grant limit or is the $100k specific to the research only, with indirect costs being allowed to bring the costs over the $100k grant limit?

17. Please let us know if this research opportunity under this year’s APS is not only for applicants from Africa. Thank you.

18. Me and two other colleagues at [different universities] are considering applying for the 2013 DRG Research and Innovation Grants and we wanted to clarify if there is any preferred timeline for the implementation of the projects that are successful in the grant competition. We are considering a project that would be implemented from August 2014 to August 2015 and we wanted to know if this would be an acceptable timeline for the project.

19. My university charges a negotiated indirect cost rate on federal grants.  How does this program deal with indirect costs?  In particular, does the sum of direct and indirect costs have to come in below the $100,000 ceiling?  Or is the ceiling only for direct costs?

20. I am trying to figure out what is the indirect cost percent. The url in the rfp sends me to the general usaid site. Is there a more specific page I can access?

21. Does the 10-page proposal (and 2-page summary) need to be single or double spaced?

22. It appears there can be more than 1 PI’s to this grant. Can we have 4 PI’s?

23. We are writing to ask you for your kind clarification of the eligibility criteria for the "USAID Democracy Fellows and Grants Program 2013". As mentioned in your funding opportunity details, one the requirements for potential applicants is the DUNS number. Given that this system does not exist at my university, I am not sure whether my team and I are yet able to apply for this grant bidding.

24. If I have more than one research project that I believe is interesting for your Research Grant Opportunity to Support USAID's Democracy, Human Rights, and Governance Work, may I pass more than one application in which I am involved as a principal investigator or member of the research teams?

25. I am applying for an APS Grant, and noticed that on the cover page I am required to include the name and signature of the research and development officer at my university. I am currently in [location] and will remain here for another month or so. Therefore, I cannot secure the officers' signature as required. Can I have the officer send you an email with her signature requesting that it be included to my grant application?

26. Please let me know if USAID has restrictions for whom, within an institution may apply to the Research and Innovation Grants Annual Program. Can an individual, such as a graduate student, without a completed graduate degree apply? What I’m wondering is whether USAID has a requirement for the Principal Investigator, applying through their institution, to hold the PhD, etc.?

27. I have a question about this call for proposal: should the proposed study be based in a country or countries in Africa?  or could it be in any country?

28. I have a question concerning the IIE/USAID DRG Research and Innovation Grants APS 2013: for your Nov. 22, 2013 first-round deadline, do you require the full technical and cost applications as specified on pages 5-7 of your RFP?

29. Is research on the civil and political rights of internally displaced people an eligible topic for this grant?

30. Regarding the focus on DOs in Section III, do you intend successful applicants to focus on one DO? If yes, do you prefer a tight focus exclusively on one or do you value the ability to address other DOs in some manner as well?

31. Do you provide resources and guidance for budget development? Particularly, if we intend to use non-US citizens on the research, how do we calculate payments? Is your answer any different if these collaborator/consultants are scholars from the region?

32. By what date do you require deliverables? The grant application runs for one year, but I find no mention of expected timelines for deliverables.

33. In what form do you expect the deliverable? A report to the Center? A scholarly paper published in a peer reviewed journal? A series of smaller gray or white papers?

34. I would appreciate if you could give me some further clarification with regards to two issues: (a) it is still unclear to me whether it is the USAID or the IIE the funder of this grant, and (b) the output/publications deriving from the funded project should be exclusively directed towards the IIE material or we could also publish scholarly publication in academic journals.

35. If successful, when should we expect to hear from you and when is the earliest date we can start working on it?

36. I think that my research interests and agenda are closely related to the mission of the USAID-DRG Research and Innovation Grant and I would like to apply. However, I am not sure if I qualify.
I would apply as an individual. I am a Mexican Citizen and I am in the process of getting a green card (US residence through marriage). I am a full time dissertation stage student. If I am eligible, it is not clear how to file my application through the University. Could you please specify the requirements for doing this?

37. Can you please clarify the timeline for these projects? I see that these are 12 month maximum grants, but what are the earliest beginning dates and end dates for the projects? When will notices be sent and monies disbursed?

38. Do you have a sense of when the notification of awarded grants will be made?  Even a tentative time window would be helpful.

39. I have received a partial scholarship from [… university] (which will be the university that I will apply for Usaid Democracy Fellows and Grants Program) to start the master in Latin American Studies by Fall 2014. Can I ask for funding from this grant to cover the rest of my costs at [… university]? I am the PI of the project and the funding I would ask to cover my work it is around USD XXXXX. My partner, a co-PI, would ask for USD XXXXX to come to the US with me to make the research and present the results to [… university].

40. I understand that the maximum grant period is twelve months. What is the earliest date at which the grant period can begin, and what is the latest date at which the grant period can end?

41. I have plans for this idea. I want more explanation about how to run. Do you have previous examples? I specialize in " types of democracy", "good governance " and " new energy".

42. Is there a quota for how many grants may be funded under each DO?

43. My colleagues and I are interested in applying for funding through this year's APS.  Our research consists of XXXXX that occur in Spring-Summer 2014.  Will successful applicants be notified and be able to begin their research by Spring 2014?

44. Please let me know the earliest and latest possible start dates for the USAID Democracy, Human Rights, and Governance (DRG) Research and Innovation Grants 2013.

45. Please provide a direct link to or the text of USAID's human subjects research policy for the purposes of the USAID Democracy, Human Rights, and Governance (DRG) Research and Innovation Grants 2013.

46. We had another question regarding the time of disbursement. We understand that the grants are valid for 12 months: is this from the date at which the application is submitted, or the date at which funds are made available. If it is the latter, we would be interested in learning when that would be.

47. I work at a European think tank with extensive experience in democratization and good governance. Is our organization eligible for the DRG Grants (Democracy Fellows and Grants Program)?

48.  Can the PI for the DRG Research and Innovation Grants APS be a professor at an eligible university, who is currently on a public service leave and working for the U.S. government but not for USAID? Can you please clarify the policy for which government employees can and cannot be PIs for this grant?

49. Our full project costs are above $100,000, so we will be submitting a cost share proposal. Do we list ALL expenses (direct and indirect), then list the cost share as a minus, so the grand total becomes $100,000? Or do we list expenses (direct and indirect) up to $100,000 and then add the cost share, so that the grand total is higher than $100,000 (ALL expenses)?

50. We have an academic who intends to apply for your USAID Democracy Fellows and Grants Program and I would be very grateful if you could let me know whether or not Federalwide Assurance and Financial Conflict of Interest will apply to this grant scheme?

51. Hello, my Think Tank in Niger has requested a DUNS number and while it is said that responses to requests take one-two business days, we are in the fourth business days of waiting for a response, while deadline for submission approaches fast. We sent a query about this to the address provided on the DUNS number request website and are awaiting the reply. My question is, is it possible to submit an application pending the arrival of the DUNS number? Thank you.

52. Does USAID subscribe to the Public Health Services policy on Objectivity in Research or have in-house guidelines (formal or informal) regarding conflict of interest in research?  If the latter, could you please direct me to the relevant document?

53. My colleagues and I have a question as we finalize the budget for the 2013 submission to the DRG Research and Innovation Grants Annual Program, upcoming this Friday. The Attachment 3, the budget, specifies columns for the PI and the staff salary.  Is this obligatory / encouraged to have the PI and co-PI salary covered from this grant? Our understanding is that we wouldn't pay our own salary out of these costs; instead the grant would be spent on research.  Is that possible? Or do DRG/USAID grants necessitate that the researchers also take some of our own salary costs away? Basically, after we account for the sub-contracting costs for the factual research, the remaining amount wouldn't be sufficient for a substantive salary... It would be great if you could let us know at your earliest convenience.

54. Would you be so kind as to confirm whether or not the proposal font for the DRG Research and Innovation Grants may be enlarged from Times New Roman 11 to Times New Roman 12.  Your assistance is greatly appreciated.

55. Will there be additional deadlines to submit proposals, other than November 22?

56. Does the research have to be in Africa?

57. The optional Survey on Ensuring Equal Opportunity for Applicants requests the CFDA Number.   Can you please post the appropriate number for Democracy Fellows and Grants Program.

58. Is it allowable to include a Figure (such as to illustrate our theory) and or Table within the 10 page narrative (as long as it stays in margins/11 point)?  


Q1. Could I work on the project while still teaching full time in my university?

A: Please refer to your institutional policies. The APS structure would not preclude that as long as the research project is adequately and appropriately staffed.

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Q2. I am considering applying for the DRG Research and Innovation Grant. I have a question about hiring staff – the APS states that staff "Need to be identified by name' (p. 7). One possible use of a grant would be to hire research assistants, whose names I would not know until I had received a grant and advertised for the position. How should I deal with this requirement?

A: Research assistants may be identified by title only. However, principal Investigators will need to be identified by name.

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Q3. This is to inquire on the eligibility criteria to be able to compete for this call for a proposal on a research grant. Would USAID staff (e.g. FSO) be deemed ineligible to participate as part of the research team?

A: Yes.

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Q4. I am currently working on a research project that is relevant to the DRG Center APS and would like to apply for funding—is this possible?

A: Applicants may submit applications to fund a discrete piece of ongoing work. However, applicants must make clear how the proposed work builds on and extends the ongoing work and defend how and why the incremental work is important over and above the project as a whole. Applicants must also identify any co-funding for the incremental research from other grants or internal resources (see page 7 of the APS) and justify the additional funds requested.

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Q5. Can non-US organizations apply?

A: IIE will accept applications from US and non-US colleges, universities, research institutions, think tanks, and other non-profit organizations that conduct research in the relevant fields (see page 1 of the APS). However, please note:

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Q6. As co-PIs, we are at two different institutions and would like to know how to best handle this in our application.  Can we submit a collaborative proposal?  If so, are there guidelines about how we should structure our application materials to do this?  For example, do we submit a single proposal with separate budgets for each co-PI?  Is there a way for us to indicate that our submissions are linked when we forward them from our Research Offices/Sponsored Programs?

A: Applications must be submitted from one institution only. However, co-PIs from two institutions may be on one application, if: 1) one PI is engaged as a consultant on the application submitted by the other PI’s institution or 2) one PI’s institution is engaged as a subcontractor on the application submitted by the other PI’s institution.

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Q7. On the budget template, there is a place for the names of Research Assistants and Consultants.  At this point, we have an idea of the graduate students and consultants that we might hire, but that may change in the future based on student availability and demands within our respective departments.  Do we need to include the names of these individuals in our budget?  If so, does that mean that we are required to hire those same individuals once the funds are allocated, or can we change them later?

A: See response to Question 2.

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Q8. The eligibility requirement states that there is required to be a legally registered entity.  My nonprofit research center has applied for a 501(c)3 status -- is a 501(c)3 status required for submission if it is still awaiting approval?

A: Applicants will need to have completed the process to be a fully registered and operating entity by the submission deadline.

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Q9. Can we use funds from a DRG Grant for course buyouts at our institutions?

A: Grant funds may be used to cover any reasonable expense needed for the effective completion of the proposed research including course buyouts, summer salary, etc., to the extent permitted by the policies of the applicant's institution. Applicants should be aware that cost is a factor in the evaluation and that proposed levels of effort for all personnel must be justified in the proposal.

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Q10. Can we use funds from a DRG Grant for summer salary for the co-PIs?

A: See response to Question 9.

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Q11. Hi, I have a question regarding the budget: I would like to include a course "buy-out" into the budget request to free some time to be able to work on the grant. Does USAID have a policy that discourages course buy-out expenses?

A: See response to Question 9.

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Q12. For the application, can you include money for another "in country" (non U.S.) organization to help collect data?  If so, do you need a bid from them to include in the budget?

A: Subcontracts, whether for another organization to collect data or another necessary purpose, are an allowable cost, and there is a space on the budget template to include them, if applicable. It is not required that the subcontractor be named at the application stage, but the purpose and estimated value must be included at the time of application. As noted in the APS (page 9), except in exceptional circumstances, applicants will be held to the funding ceiling proposed in the original budget; applicants should plan accordingly if not including a formal bid at the time of application. 

Please note that subcontracts can only be given to organizations that comply with the requirements of the 937 procurement code, meaning U.S. or developing countries as defined by USAID. See response to Question 5.

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Q13. The DRG grant opportunity is likely to be of interest to several of the regional departments at [our organization]. I wondered if more than one application is allowed from the same organization, provided the substance of the proposed project is different?

A:Organizations may submit more than one application but must submit a separate, complete application for each research project. Each application is reviewed individually against the scoring criteria listed on page 8.  There is no limit to the number of grants awarded to any one organization under this APS.

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Q14. I understand that USAID does not fund research on all the countries in Latin America, the region I research.  Are Argentina and Peru among the countries eligible for this particular grant?

A: The goal of this APS is to help USAID access and apply academic ideas, learning, and data for the myriad areas in which it works. USAID is not limiting the countries of interest but will be allocating up to 20 scoring points for relevance. Applications, whether focused on countries in which USAID is currently working or not, should demonstrate how the information generated could be used to inform or improve USAID’s DRG assistance projects, frameworks, approaches, or strategic planning. The complete list of where USAID works can be found online at http://www.usaid.gov/where-we-work

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Q15. [Our organization] is very interested in this call for proposals. Is there a limit to how many applications one organization can submit?

A: See answer to Question 13.

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Q16. Hi I have a quick question about the budget construction for the grant. Are the indirect costs included as part of the $100k grant limit or is the $100k specific to the research only, with indirect costs being allowed to bring the costs over the $100k grant limit?

A: IIE anticipates awarding grants of $10,000 – $100,000 under this APS. The total grant amount requested must include all costs—direct and indirect—that the applicant would charge to the grant, if awarded. Any amount over the maximum value of $100,000 must be met through cost share or co-funding, and must be reported in the application (see page 7 of the APS).

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Q17. Please let us know if this research opportunity under this year’s APS is not only for applicants from Africa. Thank you.

A: The APS is open for applicants worldwide. See answer to question 5; also see page 1 of the APS for further information on eligibility and the role of CPG in this year’s APS.

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Q18. Me and two other colleagues at [different universities] are considering applying for the 2013 DRG Research and Innovation Grants and we wanted to clarify if there is any preferred timeline for the implementation of the projects that are successful in the grant competition. We are considering a project that would be implemented from August 2014 to August 2015 and we wanted to know if this would be an acceptable timeline for the project.

A: Yes, that timeframe is acceptable.

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Q19. My university charges a negotiated indirect cost rate on federal grants.  How does this program deal with indirect costs?  In particular, does the sum of direct and indirect costs have to come in below the $100,000 ceiling?  Or is the ceiling only for direct costs?

A: Applicants may charge indirect costs, as established in their Negotiated Indirect Cost Rate Agreement (NICRA) with a federal agency. The $100,000 ceiling is for the total grant, both direct and indirect.  See the answer to Question 16 for more information.

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Q20. I am trying to figure out what is the indirect cost percent. The url in the rfp sends me to the general usaid site. Is there a more specific page I can access?

A: The updated link is: http://www.usaid.gov/sites/default/files/documents/1868/cib92_17.pdf
Applicants without a Negotiated Indirect Cost Rate Agreement (NICRA) with a federal agency will need to direct-bill indirect costs. Such applicants should itemize those indirect costs and present them under the indirect budget line in the budget template provided.

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Q21. Does the 10-page proposal (and 2-page summary) need to be single or double spaced?

A: The proposal should be single-spaced (see page 5 of the APS).

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Q22. It appears there can be more than 1 PI’s to this grant. Can we have 4 PI’s?

A: Yes, an application can propose 4 PIs.  Applicants should propose the personnel necessary for effective completion of the proposed research which can include multiple PIs. Applicants should be aware that cost is a factor in the evaluation and the proposed level of effort for all personnel must be justified in the proposal. See answer to Question 9 for more information.

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Q23. We are writing to ask you for your kind clarification of the eligibility criteria for the "USAID Democracy Fellows and Grants Program 2013". As mentioned in your funding opportunity details, one the requirements for potential applicants is the DUNS number. Given that this system does not exist at my university, I am not sure whether my team and I are yet able to apply for this grant bidding.

A: A DUNS number is a unique nine digit identification number for each physical location of your organization. Applicants will need to obtain a DUNS number in order to apply; this requirement applies to both U.S. and non-U.S. organizations. However, this number is free and easy to obtain and can ordinarily be obtained in 1 –2 business days. For convenience, IIE is attaching a publicly available, step-by-step guide  to how to obtain a DUNS number.

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Q24. If I have more than one research project that I believe is interesting for your Research Grant Opportunity to Support USAID’s Democracy, Human Rights, and Governance Work, may I pass more than one application in which I am involved as a principal investigator or member of the research teams?

A: Yes you may. Each application is reviewed individually against the scoring criteria so there is no limit to the number of applications an individual can be associated with. However each research project requires a separate, complete application.  See also Question 13.

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Q25. I am applying for an APS Grant, and noticed that on the cover page I am required to include the name and signature of the research and development officer at my university. I am currently in [location] and will remain here for another month or so. Therefore, I cannot secure the officers' signature as required. Can I have the officer send you an email with her signature requesting that it be included to my grant application?

A: Yes. Either an electronic signature from the authorized representative or an email from the authorized representative indicating approval of the application submission is fine.

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Q26. Please let me know if USAID has restrictions for whom, within an institution may apply to the Research and Innovation Grants Annual Program. Can an individual, such as a graduate student, without a completed graduate degree apply? What I’m wondering is whether USAID has a requirement for the Principal Investigator, applying through their institution, to hold the PhD, etc.?

A: USAID has not set minimum qualifications for Principal Investigators or other restrictions on who, within an organization, may apply.  A maximum of 20 points are allocated to the research team, which will be scored against the depth and relevance of previous research work in this area.  Please see page 8 of the APS for the scoring criteria.

Q27. I have a question about this call for proposal: should the proposed study be based in a country or countries in Africa?  or could it be in any country?

A: Proposed research may be based in any country. See page 1 of the APS for further information on the role of CPG in this year's APS and Question 14 for further information.

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Q28. I have a question concerning the IIE/USAID DRG Research and Innovation Grants APS 2013: for your Nov. 22, 2013 first-round deadline, do you require the full technical and cost applications as specified on pages 5-7 of your RFP?

A: Yes: a complete application, including full technical and cost applications, must be submitted by November 22, 2013 at 11:59 PM EST. Please note, per page 5 of the APS, “Incomplete or late applications will be considered non-responsive and ineligible.” A complete application includes everything listed on page 7 in the Application Submission Checklist section: Title Page, Technical Application, Annex 1: CVs, Annex 2: Project Timetable (use Attachment 2), EEO Survey (optional), and Cost Application (use Attachment 3). 

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Q29. Is research on the civil and political rights of internally displaced people an eligible topic for this grant?

A: Yes, this is an eligible topic, per the APS and Attachment 1. Please refer to APS Sections I and III and to Attachment 1 for further guidance on appropriate technical topics. Confirmation of eligibility of a topic is not a commitment to fund this research.

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Q30. Regarding the focus on DOs in Section III, do you intend successful applicants to focus on one DO? If yes, do you prefer a tight focus exclusively on one or do you value the ability to address other DOs in some manner as well?

A: The DRG Center is interested in applications that promise a significant advance in its understanding of any of the myriad issues on which it works as well as the specific research interests of CPG (see APS page 4). This could include research that is specific to one DO in Section III or one that cuts across DOs. Applicants are not required to define their application against the strategy but should refer to the evaluation criteria on page 8. Applications may score highly against these categories irrespective of whether they focus on one or multiple DOs and should focus most specifically on being responsive to the selection criteria.

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Q31. Do you provide resources and guidance for budget development? Particularly, if we intend to use non-US citizens on the research, how do we calculate payments? Is your answer any different if these collaborator/consultants are scholars from the region?

A: Apparently successful applicants will be provided resources and guidance in developing final grant packages, including a final budget, but no additional resources are provided at the application stage. Payments to non-US citizens are allowable under this grant, and non-US citizens may be engaged either as staff, consultants, or via a subcontract, depending on the applicant’s institutional policies and the scope of the proposed research. Payments should be calculated based on the applicant’s institutional policies, but must be full explained and justified prior to award.

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Q32. By what date do you require deliverables? The grant application runs for one year, but I find no mention of expected timelines for deliverables.

A: The applicant should propose the timeline for submission of deliverables in their project timetable (Annex 2).

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Q33. In what form do you expect the deliverable? A report to the Center? A scholarly paper published in a peer reviewed journal? A series of smaller gray or white papers?

A: The deliverables should be proposed in the project timetable (Annex 2) and will vary based on the research proposed. Applicants should define their end products in their technical applications.

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Q34. I would appreciate if you could give me some further clarification with regards to two issues: (a) it is still unclear to me whether it is the USAID or the IIE the funder of this grant, and (b) the output/publications deriving from the funded project should be exclusively directed towards the IIE material or we could also publish scholarly publication in academic journals.

A: IIE will be the grantor, and the grants will be issued under the USAID-funded Democracy Fellows and Grants (DFG) program, which IIE manages. The applicant should propose a discrete end product(s) or result that will be produced through this grant. The applicant should clarify, in the project timetable (Annex 2) and the technical application, what deliverables will be developed through this grant; the timetable should also show when the product(s) will be completed (see Questions 32 and 33). Grantees will retain the right to publish results of the project, at their discretion, in an academic journal or other medium, with due acknowledgement to IIE and USAID and with notification to IIE of the publication.

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Q35. If successful, when should we expect to hear from you and when is the earliest date we can start working on it?

A: Applications will be reviewed in a two-step process (see pages 7 – 8 of the APS) and IIE anticipates notifying applicants in early January of whether their application has been selected for funding, not selected, or waitlisted (see page 5 of the APS). However, that timing is dependent on the volume of applications received. Applicants should propose their preferred start date in the project timetable (Annex 2). Please note that apparently successful applicants will need to finalize grant packages (see pages 8 – 9 of the APS) and the time necessary to complete this process must be factored in.

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Q36. I think that my research interests and agenda are closely related to the mission of the USAID-DRG Research and Innovation Grant and I would like to apply. However, I am not sure if I qualify. I would apply as an individual. I am a Mexican Citizen and I am in the process of getting a green card (US residence through marriage). I am a full time dissertation stage student. If I am eligible, it is not clear how to file my application through the University. Could you please specify the requirements for doing this?

A: Yes, PhD candidates are eligible to apply, but must apply through their university (see Question 26). Please talk to your department about university policies on how to submit an application for grant funding. US citizenship is not required to apply, and this APS is open to US and non-US organizations (see Question 5).

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Q37. Can you please clarify the timeline for these projects? I see that these are 12 month maximum grants, but what are the earliest beginning dates and end dates for the projects? When will notices be sent and monies disbursed?

A: Grant funds will be disbursed after the grant agreement is signed. Please see the answer to Question 35.

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Q38. Do you have a sense of when the notification of awarded grants will be made?  Even a tentative time window would be helpful.

A: Please see the answer to Question 35.

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Q39. I have received a partial scholarship from [… university] (which will be the university that I will apply for Usaid Democracy Fellows and Grants Program) to start the master in Latin American Studies by Fall 2014. Can I ask for funding from this grant to cover the rest of my costs at [… university]? I am the PI of the project and the funding I would ask to cover my work it is around USD XXXXX. My partner, a co-PI, would ask for USD XXXXX to come to the US with me to make the research and present the results to [… university].

A: Grants under the DRG 2013 Research and Innovation APS will be awarded to research projects that meet the specifications described in Section I, Section III, and Attachment 1 of the APS; grant funds will not cover scholarship costs. Please refer to Question 6 for more information on how to structure an application when co-PIs are based at different universities. The DRG Center is open to using this grant mechanism to co-fund larger research projects, under this APS, as long as the application is for a discrete piece of ongoing work and co-funding is identified (see Question 4).

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Q40. I understand that the maximum grant period is twelve months. What is the earliest date at which the grant period can begin, and what is the latest date at which the grant period can end?

A: Please see Question 35 for USAID’s intended timeline for notification. Researchers should propose their preferred 12 month timeframe. 

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Q41. I have plans for this idea. I want more explanation about how to run. Do you have previous examples? I specialize in " types of democracy", "good governance " and " new energy".

A: The DRG Center is interested in applications that promise a significant advance in its understanding of any of the myriad issues on which it works as well as the specific research interests of CPG (see Question 30). Please refer to Section I, Section III, and Attachment 1 of the APS for information. This is the first year of this APS so prior grant award information is not available. 

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Q42. Is there a quota for how many grants may be funded under each DO?

A: No; please see Question 30 for more information.

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Q43. My colleagues and I are interested in applying for funding through this year's APS.  Our research consists of XXXXX that occur in Spring-Summer 2014.  Will successful applicants be notified and be able to begin their research by Spring 2014?

A: Please see Question 35.

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Q44. Please let me know the earliest and latest possible start dates for the USAID Democracy, Human Rights, and Governance (DRG) Research and Innovation Grants 2013.

A: Please see Questions 35 and 40.

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Q45. Please provide a direct link to or the text of USAID's human subjects research policy for the purposes of the USAID Democracy, Human Rights, and Governance (DRG) Research and Innovation Grants 2013.

A: The reference will vary, depending on the type organization and type grant:

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Q46. We had another question regarding the time of disbursement. We understand that the grants are valid for 12 months: is this from the date at which the application is submitted, or the date at which funds are made available. If it is the latter, we would be interested in learning when that would be.

A: Please see Questions 35 for more information on timing. Applicants selected to receive funding will be supported by IIE in developing complete grant packages and finalizing grant agreements (see Question 31). The final grant agreement will stipulate the grant period of performance, and funds will be disbursed after the grant agreement is signed by both sides, IIE and the grantee (see Question 40).

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Q47. I work at a European think tank with extensive experience in democratization and good governance. Is our organization eligible for the DRG Grants (Democracy Fellows and Grants Program)?

A: Please refer to the eligibility criteria on page 1 of the APS, and the answers to Questions 5 and 30.

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Q48.  Can the PI for the DRG Research and Innovation Grants APS be a professor at an eligible university, who is currently on a public service leave and working for the U.S. government but not for USAID? Can you please clarify the policy for which government employees can and cannot be PIs for this grant?

A: We would need additional details to make an initial determination, once the grant application is submitted. A USG employee may not ordinarily bill time to a USAID-funded grant, so it depends on the type of relationship that the professor has with the USG, whether s/he can clearly delineate time charged to the university vs. time charged to the USG, etc. Ultimately IIE would need to declare the facts about the PI’s status to our USAID Agreement Officer (AO) for the Democracy Fellows and Grants Program and get a ruling. 

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Q49. Our full project costs are above $100,000, so we will be submitting a cost share proposal. Do we list ALL expenses (direct and indirect), then list the cost share as a minus, so the grand total becomes $100,000? Or do we list expenses (direct and indirect) up to $100,000 and then add the cost share, so that the grand total is higher than $100,000 (ALL expenses)?

A: Please see Questions 16 and 19.

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Q50. We have an academic who intends to apply for your USAID Democracy Fellows and Grants Program and I would be very grateful if you could let me know whether or not Federalwide Assurance and Financial Conflict of Interest will apply to this grant scheme?

A: Applicants are expected to conform to Federalwide Assurance and Financial Conflict of Interest standards; however, different regulations will apply under a USAID-funded subgrant.

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Q51. Hello, my Think Tank in Niger has requested a DUNS number and while it is said that responses to requests take one-two business days, we are in the fourth business days of waiting for a response, while deadline for submission approaches fast. We sent a query about this to the address provided on the DUNS number request website and are awaiting the reply. My question is, is it possible to submit an application pending the arrival of the DUNS number? Thank you.

A: Please submit the proof of the DUNS application with your application.

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Q52. Does USAID subscribe to the Public Health Services policy on Objectivity in Research or have in-house guidelines (formal or informal) regarding conflict of interest in research?  If the latter, could you please direct me to the relevant document?

A: Please see the answer to Question 50. In addition, where relevant, successful grantees will be required obtain, and submit to IIE, IRB approval. 

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Q53. My colleagues and I have a question as we finalize the budget for the 2013 submission to the DRG Research and Innovation Grants Annual Program, upcoming this Friday. The Attachment 3, the budget, specifies columns for the PI and the staff salary.  Is this obligatory / encouraged to have the PI and co-PI salary covered from this grant? Our understanding is that we wouldn't pay our own salary out of these costs; instead the grant would be spent on research.  Is that possible? Or do DRG/USAID grants necessitate that the researchers also take some of our own salary costs away? Basically, after we account for the sub-contracting costs for the factual research, the remaining amount wouldn't be sufficient for a substantive salary... It would be great if you could let us know at your earliest convenience.

A: The grants do not necessitate that researchers draw salary. No specific budget category is required, but applicants should budget the costs necessary to complete their project. Any necessary costs to complete the research which are not charged to the grant should be indicated clearly as cost share (see page 7 of the APS). 

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Q54. you be so kind as to confirm whether or not the proposal font for the DRG Research and Innovation Grants may be enlarged from Times New Roman 11 to Times New Roman 12.  Your assistance is greatly appreciated.

A: No; applications should be submitted in Times New Roman 11 or similar font. See page 5 of the APS.

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Q55. Will there be additional deadlines to submit proposals, other than November 22?

A: No additional deadlines are currently planned.  Applicants are encouraged to apply by the first deadline.  Any new review deadlines would be listed on this website.

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Q56. Does the research have to be in Africa?

A: No. Please see Question 27 for further information.

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Q57. The optional Survey on Ensuring Equal Opportunity for Applicants requests the CFDA Number.   Can you please post the appropriate number for Democracy Fellows and Grants Program?

A: The CFDA number is 98.001.

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Q58. Is it allowable to include a Figure (such as to illustrate our theory) and or Table within the 10 page narrative (as long as it stays in margins/11 point)?

A: Yes.

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