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Grants to USA Historically Minority-Serving IHEs and Tribes to Develop Research Related to Disabilities and Rehabilitation

Field Initiated Projects Program: Minority-Serving Institution (MSI) - Research

GrantWatch ID# 200409
Agency: Federal

Funding Source
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) - Administration for Community Living (ACL) - National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR)
CFDA Number: 93.433
Funding or PIN Number: HHS-2023-ACL-NIDILRR-IFST-0009
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Geographic Focus

Important Dates
LOI Date: 02/17/23
Deadline: 03/14/23 11:59 PM ET Save

Grant Description
Grants to USA Historically Black, Native American, and Hispanic-serving institutions of higher education and Indian tribes to develop research related to individuals with disabilities. Applicants are advised that required registrations may take several weeks to complete. Funding is intended to improve the capacity of minority entities to conduct high-quality disability and rehabilitation research.

The purpose of the Field Initiated (FI) Projects program is to develop knowledge, methods, procedures, and rehabilitation technology that maximize the full inclusion and integration into society, employment, independent living, family support, and economic and social self-sufficiency of individuals with disabilities, especially those with the highest support needs. Another purpose of the FI Projects program is to improve the effectiveness of services authorized under the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended (Act).

The purpose of this competition is to improve the capacity of minority entities to conduct high-quality disability and rehabilitation research. NIDILRR will accomplish this by limiting eligibility for this competition to minority entities and Indian tribes in a manner consistent with section 21(b)(2)(A) of the Act, which authorizes NIDILRR to make awards to minority entities and Indian tribes to carry out activities authorized under Title II of the Act. NIDILRR makes two types of awards under the FI Projects program: research grants and development grants.

In carrying out a research activity under a FI Projects research grant, a grantee must identify one or more hypotheses or research questions and, based on the hypotheses or research questions identified, perform an intensive, systematic study directed toward producing (1) new scientific knowledge or (2) better understanding of the subject, problem studied, or body of knowledge.

FI Projects research applicants must define the stage or stages of research that they propose to conduct. Any rigorous quantitative, qualitative, or mixed-methods research can be appropriate, depending on the hypothesis or research question being addressed by the applicant. NIDILRR does not have an absolute preference for one methodological approach or research stage. If the FI Projects grant is to conduct research that can be categorized under more than one stage including research that progresses from one stage to another, those stages must be clearly specified. These stages: exploration and discovery, intervention development, intervention efficacy, and scale-up evaluation, are defined in this funding opportunity announcement.


  • Native American tribal governments (Federally recognized)
  • Private institutions of higher education
  • Public and State controlled institutions of higher education
  • Others (see text field entitled "Additional Eligibility Criteria" for clarification)

Additional Eligibility Criteria
Parties eligible to apply for MSI FI Projects grants are limited to minority entities and Indian tribes as authorized by section 21(b)(2)(A) of the Act. A minority entity is defined as a historically black college or university (a part B institution, as defined in section 322(2) of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended), a Hispanic-serving institution of higher education, an American Indian tribal college or university, or another IHE whose minority student enrollment is at least 50 percent. NIDILRR is especially interested in applications from individual minority entities that have historically been underrepresented in the federal research arena.

In addition, NIDILRR is particularly interested in receiving applications from Indian tribes, or American Indian tribal colleges or universities.

For a list of funding restrictions, see p. 16 of the FOA in Attached Files.

Pre-Proposal Conference
Date for Informational Conference Call: 02/08/2023

An informational conference call will be held between 1:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. (Eastern time) on the date listed above for the informational conference call. Interested parties are invited to participate in the pre-application meeting to discuss the funding priority and to receive information and technical assistance. You must contact in order to participate in this meeting.

NIDILRR staff also will be available to provide information and technical assistance via individual phone consultations from 3:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. on the date listed above. Requests for individual consultations during this one-hour window must be made in advance to Megan Alvarado.

Pre-Application Information
Due Date for Letter of Intent: 02/17/2023
Due Date for Applications: 03/14/2023 by 11:59 PM ET

Applicants are requested, but not required, to submit a letter of intent to apply for this funding opportunity to assist ACL in planning for the application independent review process.

You are strongly encouraged to submit your application a minimum of 3-5 days prior to the application closing date.

Please note, ACL requires applications for all announcements to be submitted electronically through in Workspace. The registration process can take several days. If your organization is not currently registered, please begin this process immediately.

All applicants must have a UEI and be registered with the System for Award Management (SAM, and maintain an active SAM registration until the application process is complete, and should a grant be made, throughout the life of the award.

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For a list of application documents, see the Package tab (press Preview) on the page above.

Additional Funding Information

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Number of Grants
NIDILRR plans to make two MSI FI awards. NIDILRR's MSI FI awards may be research projects or development projects, depending on the ranking of applications provided by the peer review panel.

Estimated Size of Grant
- Award Ceiling: $200,000 per budget period
- Award Floor: $195,000 per budget period

Term of Contract
Length of Project Period: 36-month project period with three 12-month budget periods

The anticipated project period start date for this announcement is: 09/01/2023

Contact Information
Letters of intent should be sent to:

For assistance with, please contact them at or 800-518-4726 between 7:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m. Eastern Time.

Agency contacts:

Project Officer:
Shelley Reeves
Phone: (202) 795-7427
National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research

Grants Management Specialist:
Katherine Feiring
Phone: (202) 795-7442
Office of Grants Management

RFP & Supporting Documents
Full Grant Text RFP

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates / changes / addendums / conferences / LOIs.

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