The Focused Projects Award for Junior Investigators is investigator-initiated and intended to support projects across a wide variety of topics and research questions relevant to sleep medicine that align with the mission of the AASM Foundation. Focused Projects proposals can involve patient outcomes, quality metrics or other aspects of health services research but are not limited to these topics.
Research projects should address one or more important unanswered scientific questions related to sleep and/or sleep disorders. Given the size and scope of the Focused Projects award mechanism, both small self-contained research projects and pilot projects, in preparation for a larger study, are appropriate.
- Physicians (MD or DO) who are board-eligible or board-certified in sleep medicine by the American Board of Sleep Medicine or by a member board of the American Board of Medical Specialties and have completed their sleep medicine fellowship within the past 10 years, or who are currently enrolled in an ACGME-accredited sleep medicine fellowship program are eligible to apply.
- Researchers (PhD or other similar doctoral degree) who are within 10 years of completing their post-doctoral training or who are current post-doctoral fellows.
- We encourage applicants to be members of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine.
- Applicants must identify a research mentor with the skills, knowledge and resources to provide mentorship to the applicant in sleep and circadian research.
- Individuals may apply for multiple AASM Foundation Career Development Awards (CDAs) but may only hold one active CDA at a time. (Note: Individuals who have received a CDA are encouraged to apply for an AASM Foundation Strategic Research Award (SRA); however, the investigator must demonstrate that there is no budgetary or scientific overlap between the CDA and SRA projects.)
- Individuals who have received independent research funding of more than $150,000 are not eligible to apply. This does not apply to post-doctoral/ fellowship level training grants primarily covering the applicant’s salary (e.g. NRSAs).
Please note that the AASM Foundation will not fund ongoing projects that are currently funded by another awarding body, and the investigator will be required to make a statement to this effect prior to execution of the contract. These awards are also not intended to supplement ongoing work, for example, for enrolling additional subjects into an ongoing trial.
- Significance of planned research in addressing important questions related to sleep, sleep disorders or sleep health. (Significance)
- Plan for mentorship will facilitate applicant’s success and key personnel are well-suited for the project. (Experience and Appropriateness of Mentors)
- Planned research and mentorship will fill gaps in applicant’s knowledge, skillset, and abilities. (Career Development Activities and Goals)
- Planned research (overall strategy, methodology, and analyses) is scientifically sound, plan addresses protection of human subjects from research risks and inclusion/exclusion of individuals justified (if applicable). (Approach)
- Institutional support and availability of equipment and other physical resources for the planned research. (Environment)
- A clear and feasible plan on how the Focused Projects Award will facilitate the resubmission of a competitive application, what will be achieved with the Focused Projects funds and how it will enhance the applicant’s career trajectory. (Appropriateness)
Only materials submitted within the application will be used in the evaluation of applications. The AASM Foundation Executive Committee will submit funding recommendations to the AASM Foundation Board of Directors based on the Award Review Committee scores. The AASM Foundation Board of Directors will make the final funding decisions.
|Payment #1 – Upon execution of contract||90%|
|Payment #2 – Upon receipt and approval of Final Report||10%|
If unique circumstances are explained in the budget justification of the applicant’s proposal, the Board of Directors will consider requests for an alternate payment schedule, with a maximum variance of 10%. Reallocation of funds of <10% do not require approval.
The AASM Foundation intends the Focused Project’s Award to provide funding for research efforts that improve sleep health and advance the careers of sleep scientists. These focused projects for junior investigators are designed to address the need of junior scientists to gather pilot data for larger grant applications, conduct small-scale research projects and/or to develop a funding track record while advancing an academic career.
Applicants are expected to address the specific aims as described in the application. Major modification of the proposed aims requires AASM Foundation Board of Directors or Executive Committee approval.
The expected results and deliverables should be clearly stated in the application. The applicant must submit progress and final reports during the project period, describing project activities and results, as outlined below. Failure to meet the deliverables or submit progress or final reports may result in termination of project funding.
|Progress Reports||Every six months|
|Final Report||Within 90 days of award completion|
Outcomes evaluation is an essential component of this award. All proposals must identify the goals and appropriate outcomes measures of the research. The outcomes should align with the goals and objectives stated in the applicant’s proposal for this award. The AASM Foundation intends that the research funded by this award will lead to the publication of original research in peer-reviewed journals.
If using human or animal subjects, the applicant will be responsible for obtaining Institutional Review Board (IRB) or Institutional Animal Care and use Committee (IACUC) approval. The IRB or IACUC letter of approval for the specified project must be on file with the AASM Foundation office prior to the execution of the contract. No funds will be released for the project without receipt of written approval by an IRB or IACUC. Failure to obtain IRB or IACUC approval will result in retraction of the award.