Research Administration and Development

Multi-Disciplinary Research Cluster Development Seed Fund Program


The purpose of the program is to seed support the development of faculty-led multi-disciplinary research clusters that bolster and expand scholarship and innovative high-impact research across college lines to bring knowledge to bear on issues of intellectual, scientific, humanistic, social, economic, environmental and cultural importance and to work more effectively with the private sector, other institutions and the community.  Partnerships should emerge naturally from shared research interests and needs, and take into account future external funding opportunities, and USM’s unique strengths. Proposals that do not demonstrate faculty collaboration across two or more colleges will not be considered for review.

This is the second round of competition for seeding research clusters at USM. Click here for summary descriptions of the currently funded multi-disciplinary research clusters. The outcomes of funded cluster proposals are to: (a) coalesce the depth of USM faculty expertise to address industry and community needs; (b) bring greater internal and external attention to USM faculty research and scholarship, deepening its cumulative impact; and (c) help leverage external funding for sustained collaborative efforts.

Because the source of funding for this competition is the Maine Economic Improvement Fund (MEIF), research clusters must demonstrate clear benefits to one or more of the following target areas: Aquaculture and Marine Sciences, Advanced Technologies for Forestry and Agriculture Technologies Environmental Technologies, Biotechnology, Information Technologies, Composites and Advanced Materials, and Precision Manufacturing. Clear benefits must be specific but broadly applied to the target areas and in the form of research projects that address industry problems, workforce development, process improvements, enhancement of existing or development of new products and services.

Proposals should demonstrate faculty collaboration across two or more colleges. Proposals must also have at least one industry partner and one community partner that are actively engaged in the development and sustainability of the cluster. Industry partners are private, for-profit companies or industry associations in the target areas. Community partners are other organizations that are not private, for-profit organizations.

Critical dates

Letter of intent due: January 31, 2014

Full Proposal due:  March 28, 2014

Anticipated grant notification date:  May 30, 2014

Anticipated start date: July 1, 2014

Application Package

Call for proposals

Cover Sheet

NIH Biographical Sketch Template

NSF Biographical Sketch Template

Please direct inquiries to:

Dr. Samantha Langley-Turnbaugh at 780-5084 or langley@usm.maine.edu

Dr. Terry Shehata at 228-8239 or tshehata@usm.maine.edu