What Is a Research Grant?

This post was originally published on December 6, 2016 and updated on October 7, 2019.

Within the realm of federal government grants, research and development grants are some of the most numerous and diverse. What types of research grants does the Federal government support?

When you search for “research” on Grants.gov, there are currently over 1,600 open grant opportunities! Each of these diverse assistance programs and grant opportunities are legislatively authorized federal assistance programs that federal grant-making agencies use to support research.

Grants.gov's What is... Blog Series

What do you mean by “research”?

A simple definition of research is the “careful study that is done to find and report new knowledge about something” (Merriam-Webster Dictionary). While many of us may picture scientists in white coats performing lab experiments, the range of research grants is far wider.

Additionally, a “research grant” isn’t one, specific type of grant. Rather, grants that fund or support research can be awarded through a discretionary grant, block grant, or any of the other types of grants.

How do I get a research grant?

First, you or your organization need expertise within your field of work (e.g., aeronautics, biomedical devices, or ecology).

Next, before searching through hundreds of grant opportunities, you may want to familiarize yourself with the grant-making agencies and their programs that fund research.

Each agency funds research to some degree, but here are some of the most frequent funding agencies and links to resources about research grants:

Finally, you need to search for open grant opportunities that align with your area of expertise. Once you’re ready to apply, create a workspace and begin your application!

50 thoughts on “What Is a Research Grant?

    1. Doing research is not an easy thing. Depending on the type of research, some research takes years to finish. Research is done to discover something new or to revise facts. This is done systematically. Research grants are offered to encourage people do research.

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  1. Thank you for information! I think it is quite useful especially for those who have a rather interesting idea for research, but who can not afford to financially implement, for example a trip to the prospective research place.

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  2. Thank you for information! I think it is quite useful especially for those who have a rather interesting idea for research, but who can not afford to financially implement, for example a trip to the prospective research place.

    Like

    1. Go to the Search Grants tab in Grants.gov, then filter the funding opportunities by “Category” to “Arts” to view any open funding opportunities that pertain to the Arts category. Change the Opportunity Status to Closed or Archived to see past funding opportunities: https://www.grants.gov/web/grants/search-grants.html

      You may also go to the Grant-Making Agencies section of the Grants Learning Center to read about federal agency grant programs that may support what you are searching for: https://www.grants.gov/web/grants/learn-grants/grant-making-agencies.html

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