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Call for ZJU-Cornell Joint Seed Grants (2021 cycle)

The Cornell China Center invites proposals from Cornell faculty through our Zhejiang University-Cornell University Joint Seed Grants (2021 grant cycle).

Info session: Thursday, Oct. 15, 2020 from 11:00 am - noon EDT. Click here to join via Zoom then, or dial in: +1 646 518 9805, Meeting ID: 925 3086 5682, Passcode: 616156.

Zhejiang University (ZJU) in China and Cornell University (Cornell) in the U.S. have developed this Joint Seed Fund to promote and support research collaboration projects between both institutions. This grant cycle is the second of at least three years that the universities hope to run this grant program. Projects should have at least one highly-engaged Principal Investigator from each institution who is expected to be in place for the long term and maintain a significant role in the project. It is hoped that besides tangible academic outcomes such as the submission of co-authored publications, projects will result in long-lasting, substantial collaborations that are maintained beyond the initial funding period and will be supported in the future by governmental, philanthropic, industrial, or other external funding, so successful proposed projects will include plans to jointly apply for significant future external funding.

For this funding cycle, proposals from all fields are welcome, and innovative projects with a clear intention to advance progress towards the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) will be prioritized. Up to five proposals will be funded. Each successful proposal may receive up to US $20,000 (for Cornell expenses) and up to CNY 150,000 (for ZJU expenses), with each university funding its own side of the project budget in its own currency.

While the coronavirus outbreak has been affecting travel and exchange activities, the Cornell China Center recognizes the value of building long-term collaborative relationships that tackle complex challenges, design joint initiatives, and grow intercultural understanding. We encourage applicants to plan remote work, and if you propose essential research travel, please also include a Plan B including a second budget to collaborate virtually in case travel is not possible during the project period. We look forward to funding innovative research that brings together collaborators to positively impact our world, educate future leaders, and disseminate knowledge for the global public good.

You can download the call for proposals and the application form here. PIs should each submit the application form to their respective universities. The Cornell PI should submit the PDF application file through this Qualtrics submission form. Abstracts of research funded by the Cornell China Center in 2019 & 2020 are viewable here.

Common Questions:

  • Can a PI submit multiple proposals for different projects?  Yes.
  • Do these grants allow computer purchases?  No.
  • Can I exceed the page limit to include extra text, a reference list, or images?  We ask all grant applicants to stick to the page limit to be fair to all. Thanks!
  • How do we submit our CVs?  To submit your application on the Cornell side, please compile everything into one PDF file and upload through the Qualtrics form.
  • What fringe rate should we use for this funding?  There is no indirect charge on these internal Cornell China Center grants.
  • Do I need a Form 10?  Not for these internal grants. If the grant PI would need approval to be a PI through an exception for an external grant application, then please get an email note from a department chair/center director or similar approving the PI to apply for this internal grant. Include this permission to be a PI with the single PDF application upload in Qualtrics when you apply. This exception note does not count towards the page limit.
  • Feel free to contact us with additional questions at or 607-255-0550.