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Provide seed funding and opportunities for college-wide initiatives that operate at the interface of existing and emerging fields.


LEAD: Dr. Dean Appling, Associate Dean for Research and Facilities



The College has established the CNS Catalyst Grant Program, a competitive college-wide program to provide seed funding for interdisciplinary research at the interface of existing and emerging fields. Two teams of faculty, including a cross-college team involving Engineering and Liberal Arts faculty, received Catalyst Grant funding totaling $150,000 in Spring 2014. The next Catalyst Grant competition will take place in Spring 2015.  Although we are only six months into the program, this funding has already supported one publication and several proposal submissions for sustained external funding. The College will also use this mechanism to catalyze faculty interactions with the Dell Medical School.

In 2015-16, the College’s CNS Catalyst Grant competition received eleven competitive applications from faculty across the College in Fall 2015. The proposal submitted by Mikhail Matz (Integrative Biology) and Rowan Martindale (Geological Sciences) was selected for award. Eleven applications were also received for the Spring 2016 award cycle, with the grant awarded to Jonathan Pierce-Shimomura (Neuroscience) and Vishwanath Iyer (Molecular Biosciences). Faculty continue, each semester, to submit proposals for these awards.


  • Proposals funded by the Catalyst Grant Program will result in successful publications and grant funding.
  • The CNS budget for the Catalyst Grant Program will be appropriately sized and sustained.



The College:

  • tracks publication and grant funding of successful proposals



  • We are evaluating and optimizing the Catalyst Grant Program as needed after each round of competitions.