The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has released a solicitation for planning grants for Climate Change and Health Research Centers (CCHRCs). These awards, which will be issued using the P20 exploratory grants mechanism, represent the first major new opportunity through NIH’s Climate Change and Health Initiative, which received $40 million in new funding through the FY 2023 omnibus appropriations bill. Although development of the Climate Change and Health Initiative has been underway for several years under the leadership of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) at NIH, a lack of dedicated appropriations for this program has stymied the introduction of new large funding opportunities until now.
The CCHRCs will serve as transdisciplinary research environments for the advancement of specific thematic topics within the broader scope of climate change and human health. Each Center should focus on developing “action-oriented” public health strategies as well as building resilient community, national, and global partnerships. CCHRC planning grant proposals should support the core themes set out in NIH’s Climate Change and Health Initiative Strategic Framework: health effects research, health equity, intervention science, and training and capacity building. Applications should specifically include planning and development activities aimed at building institutional capacity in climate and health that would enable the institution to compete for future awards in this research area.
All CCHRCs should focus on a uniting central theme that will lead to the generation of new knowledge about how climate change impacts human health, and proposals should include the following components:
- At least one, but no more than two, Research Projects aligned with the Center’s overarching theme;
- An Administrative Core, including a data infrastructure plan and career development plans for researchers from underrepresented backgrounds;
- A Community Engagement Core, which will coordinate the inclusion of impacted communities and/or expected end users in the Center’s activities; and
- No more than two Additional Cores focused on activities such as pilot projects, team building, or facility and/or service development to support the Center.
In addition to these major components, each proposal must include a Plan for Enhancing Diverse Perspectives (PEDP) in the proposed research. Each CCHRC is also expected to engage with NIH’s soon-to-be-announced Climate Change and Health Research Coordinating Center and the broader NIH-funded Climate Change and Health Community of Practice. Given the transdisciplinary nature of the CCHRCs, NIH notes that Center Directors can come from a wide range of disciplines in the health, environmental, clinical, and behavioral and social sciences.
Award Information: NIH intends to commit $30 million in FY 2023 and FY 2024 to fund up to 17 awards. The maximum project period is 3 years and application budgets are limited to $850,000 in direct costs per year.
Eligibility Details: Public and private institutions of higher education, other nonprofit organizations, for-profit businesses, and local governments are eligible to apply. NIH especially encourages applications from Minority-Serving Institutions. Organizations may submit more than one application as long as the proposals are scientifically distinct.
Deadline: There are two deadlines available for this program: May 1, 2023 and November 7, 2023.
Informational Webinar: NIH will hold an informational webinar for the CCHRCs on April 5, 2023 from 1 – 3 pm ET. Registration is available online here.
Sources and Additional Information:
- The full solicitation for the CCHRC planning grants can be found at https://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-ES-23-007.html.
- Additional resources from NIEHS for this program are available at https://www.niehs.nih.gov/research/programs/climatechange/research_program/p20/.
- Guidance from NIH on developing a Plan for Enhancing Diverse Perspectives (PEDP) can be found at https://braininitiative.nih.gov/about/plan-enhancing-diverse-perspectives-pedp.