Internal Funding

The application period for the 2020-21 Momentum Funds is closed


The Pitt Momentum Funds support high-quality research, scholarship, and creative endeavors at three distinct scales. The suite of funds consists of: Seeding Grants, which support significant and innovative scholarship by individuals or small groups of faculty; Teaming Grants, which support the early stage planning and capacity building of large multidisciplinary projects; and Scaling Grants, which support the detailed project planning, gathering of proof-of-concept results, and reduction of technical risk so that teams can competitively pursue large, complex, extramural funding.

Awards are made across the breadth of interdisciplinary scholarship at the University, and all eligible faculty are encouraged to propose new, innovate ideas that can contribute meaningful insight, understanding, or solutions to societal challenges. Teamed projects are reviewed by multidisciplinary faculty panels and individual projects are reviewed by one of four committees:

  • Creative Arts, Performing Arts & Humanities
  • Engineering, Technology, Natural Sciences, and Mathematical Sciences
  • Health & Life Sciences
  • Social Sciences, which includes Business, Policy, Law, Education, Informatics, and Social Work

In response to the crises of 2020, the Pitt Momentum Funds program calls for research across all scales that seeks to improve our understanding of these extraordinary times. Particularly encouraged are projects addressing systemic racism, histories of racist structures, impact of race/ethnicity on social determinants of health, preexisting racial inequities highlighted again by the global COVID-19 pandemic, or arts-based race or social justice storytelling and creative performance. We encourage a range of interdisciplinary theoretical and methodological approaches to address social (in)justices.

Seeding Grants support significant and innovative scholarship by individuals or groups of faculty at all ranks at the University of Pittsburgh. In constructing each year’s portfolio of awards, particular attention will be given to supporting early career faculty* and areas where external funding is extremely limited. Awards are made up to $16,000 for 1 year with supplements of $2,000 available to projects integrating undergraduate research experiences.

Teaming Grants support the formation of new multi-disciplinary collaborations to successfully pursue large-scale external funding. Team and community building activities may include, but are not limited to, inviting external speakers, creating a working paper series, or organizing a workshop. Teams must include faculty from at least three schools as described in the eligibility criteria section below. Awards are made up to $60,000 for 1 year.

Scaling Grants enable multi-disciplinary teams to competitively scale their research efforts in targeted pursuit of large-scale external funding. Teams must include faculty from at least three schools as described in the eligibility section below. Awards are made up to $400,000 for 2 years.

The Teaming and Scaling Grants are specifically designed to further the goal of the Plan for Pitt: to engage in research of impact by positioning the University to participate in large research collaborations. Pitt Momentum Funds are administered by the Senior Vice Chancellor for Research through the Office of Sponsored Programs, in coordination with and supported by the Office of the Provost. 

To learn more about the Pitt Momentum Funds and the work funded through this program please visit the PittResearch Fueling Our Future site.

Further seed funding programs are sponsored by the Office of the Chancellor, the Office of the Provost, and other offices at the University of Pittsburgh:

Pitt Seed Grants

Supported by the Office of the Chancellor, the Pitt Seed Projects program encourages faculty and staff to submit proposals for projects that support one or more of the six strategic goals in the Plan for Pitt and will play an instrumental role in transforming the University of Pittsburgh. Proposed projects can include a range of activities including research ideas, academic programs, process improvement, diversity, community and industry partnership development, outreach, methods of teaching and learning, workshops, lectures, and enhancing the student experience. Application information will be available by the end of the year.

Open Education Resource Grants

Supported by the Office of the Provost, the Open Education Resource Grants support the development of open educational resources, the Provost provides funding for projects that will enhance the educational experiences of Pitt students and provide these faculty with the ability to customize their course materials. Proposals are invited annually from faculty for projects to adapt, adopt and/or create open education resources for an existing course.

Forge Your Own Path—Personalized Education Grants

Supported by the Office of the Provost, the Forge Your Own Path grants provide key support to the Pitt community to develop transformative ideas for how courses, advising and extracurricular programming can be matched to the interests and goals of individual students. These grants provide up to $25,000 in support of projects that integrate the rich expertise and network of the Pitt community with new and emerging technologies to provide meaningful and customized collaborations, connections and experiences that will prepare and empower our students to lead lives of self-determined impact. Personalized Education Grants have been paused for the 2020-2021 academic year.

Course Incubator Projects

Supported by the Office of the Provost, Course Incubator Grants support projects to radically redesign large-enrollment classes—enrollment of more than 100— to increase the success of students. Projects focus on transformative design of an entire course, including revising syllabi, designing learning activities, developing assessment strategies and reimagining classroom teaching. The Course Incubator awards are being paused for the 2020-2021 academic year.

Innovation in Education Awards

Supported by the Office of the Provost, Innovation in Education Awards support projects by faculty members for the development of enhanced and innovative teaching techniques and materials that will strengthen the teaching mission of the University. The program seeks ideas that focus on experiential or active learning; innovative, discipline-based approaches to teaching and learning; technology-enhanced learning; and data-driven approaches to the design or assessment of curricular innovation. The Innovation in Education Awards have been paused for the 2020-2021 academic year.

Additional funding opportunities sponsored by the University of Pittsburgh:

Please be sure to contact the sponsoring office to confirm program deadlines and details.