Sleep Research Pilot Grants


About the Sleep Innovation Research Grant (SIRG) Program 


Program goals: To build an internationally recognized program of research in sleep science at UNC-Chapel Hill. The grants will: 

  • Provide research funding to conduct innovative sleep science research in the clinical or translational sciences
  • Foster interdisciplinary research capacity in sleep science
  • Facilitate extramural funding success among investigators with faculty or a post-doctoral fellowship at UNC-Chapel Hill

To learn more about the program, check out these presentations prepared by faculty for the program's launch:


  • Funds up to a maximum of $10,000 will be awarded for a one-year period
  • Three awards per year, starting in 2018, for three years

Types of Research Supported

Any application proposing clinical or translational research meeting the NIH definition will be eligible. We will fund: 

  • Research across the translational continuum (T1-T4 research)
  • A variety of methodologies (e.g., qualitative, quantitative, single case)


  • Applicants must have a faculty-level appointment (tenure-track or fixed-term) or a post-doctoral fellowship appointment (with a faculty mentor) at UNC-Chapel Hill
  • Early stage investigators are encouraged to appy
  • No track record of research in sleep science is required

Dates to Remember

  • November 29, 2017: RFAs announced
  • January 31, 2018: Letter of intent due
  • March 30, 2018: Application due
  • June 1, 2018: Award announcement
  • July 2, 2018: Funds made available (pending IRB approval)

LOI and Application Requirements

LOI requirements

LOI requirements       

Application requirements

Application chart


Review of Proposals

  • Pilot grant applications will be assigned to 
    experienced grant reviewers who use NIH scoring guidelines
  • In addition to providing scores for the project's overall impact, significance, innovation, and approach, reviewers must respond to the following questions:
    • Are plans for submitting future extramural grant application(s) specific and clear?
    • If the proposed pilot project is successful, will the findings yield sufficient preliminary data to support a future larger-scale grant application?  

   SIRG vid thumbnail

Click here to watch a video about the Sleep Innovation Research Grant (SIRG) program.

About the SIRG (Brian Boyd): 09:00-32:00
Methodologies (Mary Ellen Wells): 32:00-01:00:00
Impact of Sleep (Bradley Vaughn): 01:00:00-01:35:00


Please contact Patty Kinneer:                                                                                   

Research Coordinator/Grant Editor                                                                    
3008 Bondurant Hall                                                                                       
CB #7122
Office phone: (919) 445-0507