Concept Paper Template (1-2 pages)

Concept papers are used to develop ideas with funders in mind even though it can be used for other purposes.  A concept paper may include some or all of the following sections, depending upon how developed the idea is and whether or not the concept paper is being developed in response to a specific funding opportunity. Concept papers should sell the idea to potential funding sponsors and/or collaborators. Consider using a compelling title, graphics and/or data to illustrate key points.

Title                                                                                          Date

Introduction: In 2-3 sentences,tell why the need should be addressed, provide a brief overview of the project, and an explanation of how it aligns with any funding agency's mission.

Purpose: If applicable, describe the funding mechanism you believe is a strong match for the project.

Project Description: Describe the "who, what, and when" - i.e. what tasks will be undertaken, who will lead those tasks, and when the work will be accomplished. Briefly state your proposed solution to the problem, the answer to the need, or the investigation that will fill the knowledge gap. Address your unique, unusual, distinctive, innovative, and/or novel aspects of the approach, showing why you have the best solution worthy of funding. The project description can be broken down into 3 sections:

Problem & Significance: Explain why you to think, based on a review of the literature, that the topic needs study and why it is important to the field.

Approach/Methodology: Specify what hypotheses you will test and what model will guide your hypotheses. Explain what is new in your approach, why it is important to be done, and how it is unique. Include mention of any resources, collaborators, target populations, preliminary data, etc. that area available to the project.

Impacts & Outcomes: Describe the project’s expected outcomes, which may include impacts on the scientific field, societal benefits, health impacts, economic impacts, etc.

Evaluation: Briefly state your intended outcomes and how you will measure success.

Project Team: Identify key collaborators and their sponsoring organization. Identify stakeholders for which significant cooperation will be needed to implement the proposed project. If applicable, indicate which stakeholders are willing to provide a written commitment of support for the project.

Budget/Timeline: If appropriate for the chosen audience, indicate what you anticipate the project will cost and how long it will take to complete.

Funding Sources: Where will the money come from.

Contact Info.: Provide contact information for the lead person