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Office for Research and Graduate Education

College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences


Research News - April 2023

April 3, 2023
Dr. Uttara Samarakoon receiving her CFAES STARS award for successful completion of the program from Dr. Gary Pierzynski

Inside this Issue

  • A reminder on facilities and administration (F&A) costs from Dr. Gary Pierzynski
  • Register for Mapping your Research Agenda for early- to mid- career faculty interested in developing a concrete plan for their short- and long-term research agenda on by 4/17
  • The Celebration of Research Week wraps for 2023
  • We are pleased to announce the Pre-Award Resources channel in the Research Administration Network

*Due to technical difficulties the PDF version of the Research News is not available for March. The PDF will return for the May 2023 issue. Thank you for your understanding. 

Funding Opportunties 

As funding opportunities are announced we will compile a full list on our website. The web page will be updated periodically as new opportunities are discovered.

  • President's Research Excellence Program
    Ohio State aims to grow its research and innovation enterprise and increase its research eminence among the nation’s and the world’s research universities by attracting more externally sponsored research funding, enabling curiosity-driven research and discoveries, and addressing large, complex societal challenges. Towards these goals, the President’s Research Excellence (PRE) program provides seed support for cross- and interdisciplinary research that have the potential to attract external funding.
    Deadline: May 5, 2023

  • Collaborative Program Grant for Multidisciplinary Teams (RM1 - Clinical Trial Optional)
    This Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) is designed to support highly integrated research teams of three to six Program Directors/Principal Investigators (PDs/PIs) to address ambitious and challenging research questions that are within the mission of NIGMS. Project goals should not be achievable with a collection of individual efforts or projects. Collaborative program teams are expected to accomplish goals that require considerable synergy and managed team interactions. Teams are encouraged to consider far-reaching objectives that will produce major advances in their fields.
    Deadline: May 26, 2023

View All Funding Opportunities

A woman working in an office at a laptop. A Reminder About F&A Costs

Gary Pierzynski, Associate Dean for Research & Graduate Education

As we enter one of our peak periods for grant submissions, a reminder about facilities and administration costs (F&A), also referred to as indirect costs or overhead, is in order. F&A is added to the actual cost of doing a project to compensate OSU for expenses that cannot be charged directly back to the project. Such expenses include utilities, space, maintaining the library, administration, information technology services, etc. In other words, the infrastructure that allows us to conduct the research.

If a sponsor allows F&A to be charged then it must be included in the project budget. We do work with a number of sponsors that do not allow F&A and, when serving our stakeholders as a land-grant university, we accept this while many institutions do not. Faculty sometimes wish to charge less than the allowable amount of F&A and we have a waiver process where such a request can be made. As a reminder, individual faculty members and the unit/department/school do not have the authority to negotiate with sponsors about F&A, or to waive F&A, and any such agreements are not binding for the university or college. A waiver must be requested and approved in advance of the completion of the ePA-005 and submission of the proposal.  

We have an interesting dynamic with our industry partners who should be very familiar with the concept of overhead as part of the cost of doing business. The cost of your new automobile does not just include the cost of the materials and labor to assemble the vehicle, but rather everything from the energy cost to extract the iron to make the steel all the way to the cost of operating the auto dealership where you made the purchase. Yet, faculty and industry representatives alike argue strongly against paying F&A. There are many factors involved but at the root of the issue is the fact that our industry contacts often have a fixed pool of funds to work with and they want to get as much done with that as possible. Faculty want as much of those funds under their control as possible, and faculty are concerned that our industry partners will go elsewhere to get a better deal. Our waiver process tries to find the appropriate balance of these factors. Overall, we need to work toward increasing our F&A collections for the financial health of the college, which has been slowly occurring over the past 5 years.

There is another interesting financial aspect to the F&A issue. At OSU, central administration charges the colleges a “tax” based on research expenditures rather than taking a fixed percentage of the F&A that is collected. This tax is applied to all research expenditures, including those generated from projects from which we do not collect F&A costs, and thus such projects cost the college and the departments. To some extent, as a land-grant institution and as we serve our stakeholders, we expect to have projects with low or no F&A cost recovery, but we must work toward minimizing this situation whenever we are able. I look forward to working with you on this and other important issues.

View F&A Waiver Request Services Visit Our Website

Seven colleagues sitting at a table with papers and laptops having a meeting.Spotlight

  • NIH Data Management and Sharing Plan vs. Resource Sharing Plan
    The Data Management and Sharing (DMS) Plan and Resource Sharing Plan are separate attachments that may be required for your application. One does not necessarily replace the other.

  • How to Run a Good Meeting
    We've all experienced our share of snoozers. By setting a goal, carefully selecting participants, sticking to an agenda and dealing effectively with distractions, organizers can ensure the session is a constructive use of everyone's time.

  • Meet Ohio State inventors working to impact lives through commercialization
    Ohio State researchers are passionate about finding solutions that the world needs now. The Technology Commercialization Office has begun a series of stories featuring Ohio State innovators who are pursuing commercialization of their discoveries in order for them to have the most impact on society. Learn more about how their work is making an impact, and how yours can, too.

New & Newsworthy

A man staring at an ideas board covered in many sticky notes and papers making a plan Mapping your Research Agenda: Workshop and Panel Discussion
The Office of Knowledge Enterprise is hosting a two-hour virtual workshop, Mapping your Research Agenda: Workshop and Panel Discussion, designed for early- to mid- career faculty interested in developing a concrete plan for their short-term and long-term research agenda.

Rachel Kajfez, Associate Professor of Engineering Education in the College of Engineering will share her own experiences with research planning and provide practical steps for breaking down a long-term plan into smaller goals.

The second hour, participants will have an opportunity to engage with a panel of faculty from across the university.

Register below by 4/17!

Get Registered

Research Development & Grant Writing News
We invite you to access the current issue of Research Development and Grant Writing News. The Enterprise for Research, Innovation, and Knowledge | Research Development Office provides access to this subscription-based newsletter for the entire campus community.

Articles of Interest:

  • AFRI Foundational Review Criteria & Narrative Format  We discuss the new USDA Agriculture and Food Research Initiative Foundational and Applied Science Program RFA.

  • Budget of the US Government FY23/Agency Allocations President Biden’s new proposed budget for FY 2023 was released last week. We discuss what it means for research funding. 

  • Basic Research: The Trial-and-Error Trap Reviewers for basic research agencies such as NSF and NIH dislike projects that take a trial-and-error approach. We discuss this trap and how to avoid it (reprinted from the March 2019 issue). 

  • How the Department of Energy Reviews Your Proposal We discuss how the Department of Energy reviews proposals (reprinted from the May 2019 issue).

  • How Your Research Fits in Your Discipline’s State of the Art – We discuss how to explain how your project fits into your discipline’s current and emerging state of the art (reprinted from the May 2019 issue).

Read Now

Researcher working in a greenhouse holding a clipboard as he analyzes plants next to the words, "2023 CFAES Celebration of Research Wek, March 27 - 31. You're Invited!" 2023 CFAES Celebration of Research Week Wraps
Last Friday, the 2023 Celebration of Research Week was drawn to a close. Our appreciation for the research that is taking place in our college was exhibited and much fun was had. On Monday and Tuesday, the Research Forum Poster Competition was held on the CFAES Wooster and Columbus Campuses, respectively. On Thursday, the 2023 Research Forum Awards Ceremony was held at the Nationwide and Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center in Columbus. Winners of the 2023 Research Awards were recognized again, the poster competition award winners were announced to much anticipation, and Dr. Gary Pierzynski, Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Education, shared his remarks on the state of the CFAES Research Enterprise. We want to congratulate all our poster competition winners and thank them for their participation. We also want to congratulate the research award winners and commend their efforts.

A photo of Dr. Mitchell Roth in grad school and a current headshot of Dr. Roth next to the text, "Why did you get involved in research? “I grew up on a family farm in rural Michigan, but was not passionate about agriculture. Instead, I was more interested in sports and school, particularly biology and medicine. In college I realized that I did not like medicine as much as I thought I did, and recognized that agriculture and plant biology was a the perfect place that I could combine my background and interests. My dad still farms to this day, and my inspiration for a career in research is to try and make agriculture just a little easier, so hard-working farmers like my dad can spend a little less time working and a little more time enjoying the fruits of their labor.”Lastly, our social media campaign highlighting the second CFAES STARS (Strategic Alignment for Research Success) cohort was a massive success! We thank each of you for tuning in each day for our highlight and your comments, likes, and shares. Special thanks also goes out to the CFAES STARS and their dedication and hard work to completing the program and developing detailed, ambitious, and exciting Research Action Plans for their labs in the near and distant future. If you missed the CFAES STARS spotlights, please check them out by visiting our profiles on Facebook at and on Twitter at Remember to follow us to stay in the loop on all things CFAES Research! 

View Awardees View Past Awardees View Poster Winners 

Research Administration Resource 
We are pleased to announce the Pre-Award Resources channel in the Research Administration Network! You can use this channel to find resources, ask questions or post research administration-related opportunities and notices for all things pre-award.

Like the other channels, the Pre-Award channel is led by a team of colleagues in charge of the content, who will moderate the posts and are your source for management of the channel:

  • Brandon Stine, College of Medicine
  • Kimberly Pratt, Research Development Office
  • Lori Kaser, College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences

The Files tab is already populated with many resources (e.g., guidance, forms, templates, checklists) you might find helpful, and we are asking for your help to add more. Please email the channel leaders at  with any resources you’d like to contribute to these files.

Ask questions, learn from your peers, and get the latest on training opportunities by joining the network, which utilizes the Microsoft Teams platform. Non-Medical Center users can search and join the Team. Medical Center users should contact Karla Gengler-Nowak to be added as a guest.

Let us know if you have any questions or ideas!

Email Channel Leaders Contact Karla Gengler-Nowak 

Ohio State Open Access publishing agreements
Ohio State corresponding authors can publish Open Access articles at no cost to them under the agreements University Libraries and the Health Sciences Library have with publishers.

To learn more about our current Open Access publishing agreements with De GruyterInstitute of Physics (IOP), Wiley, Cambridge University PressPLOSTaylor & Francis and the Royal Society. Visit the Transforming Publishing website today at to learn more. 

Visit Website

Sustainability Institute seeks proposals for new Exploratory Research Groups
Exploratory Research Groups (ERGs) are designed to support early-stage, exploratory research, scholarship and creative expression across a range of faculty/scholar-determined topics. The Sustainability Institute (SI) aims to support researchers and scholars from across the university in growing collaborative, interdisciplinary teams focused on sustainability or resilience topics. This program began in fall 2021 with 15 new ERGs. SI is currently accepting proposals for the second cohort of Exploratory Research Groups. Proposals are due May 1.

Read More

Graduate student applicants sought for FY2024-25 Fulbright U.S. Student ProgramThe Office of International Affairs (OIA) is seeking graduate student applicants for the 2024-25 award year Fulbright U.S. Student Program competition. This Fulbright program provides an opportunity for students to obtain grants to conduct research, enroll in studies or teach English abroad in over 150 countries for up to one academic year. OIA assists graduate students with their applications and will be holding information sessions throughout the summer. For schedule and registration, please visit Graduate students interested in the 2024-25 award cycle must register with Laura Pearce.

Learn More

FFAR Funding Opportunity
The Wean-to-Harvest Biosecurity Program seeks to help control the next emerging disease in the U.S. pork industry and improve U.S. swine herd health. The research priorities for this second round of solicitation continue to focus on site and transportation biosecurity. They cover five targeted areas: 1) personnel biocontainment and bioexclusion; 2) mortality management; 3) truck wash efficiency; 4) alternatives to fixed truck wash; and 5) packing plant biocontainment. The program seeks novel tools in any of these five areas to help result in comprehensive biosecurity enhancement. Collaborative projects that include pork industry, allied industry and/or academic public/private partnerships, demonstrate the most urgency and timeliness of completion, and show efficient use of funds, will be prioritized for funding.

Approximately $1.3 million is available for this second round of research projects; proposals are capped at $200,000. The proposal template and instructions for completion and submission can be found at on the SHIC website. Deadline for proposal submission is 5:00 pm CDT, April 28, 2023. 

Learn More


NSF 2023 Convergence Accelerator Program Preview

Friday April 7, 2023 12:00-12:45 PM   

Zoom Link:

NSF recently released a Dear Colleague Letter announcing upcoming topics for the 2023 Convergence Accelerator program. The goals of the NSF Convergence Accelerator are to accelerate use-inspired convergence research in areas of national importance and societal challenges, and to initiate convergence team-building capacity around exploratory, potentially high-risk proposals addressing selected convergent research topics

There will be three tracks for this year (descriptions available here):

Track K: Equitable Water Solutions:

  • Design of sustainable water supply systems by delivering novel, effective, unbiased data-driven decision support tools – leveraging artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning – and technical solutions, e.g., filtration devices, and new materials for transportation and storage among others.
  • Development of tools, technologies, and approaches to address watersheds as a whole; specifically in relation to water distribution, the safety of the water supply, and inequalities in the allocation of water resources, including new computational and technical as well as social and behavioral solutions to water sharing, such as quality and quantity projections and economic models.
  • Creation of equitable access and engagement with freshwater resources, including engagement through training and workforce development, new models, and technical solutions.

Track L: Real-World Chemical Sensing Applications

  • Development of innovative biological and chemical sensor systems inspired by applications in environmental sensing, agriculture, food production and quality control, homeland security, home healthcare (e.g., miniaturized and low-power point-of-care diagnostic systems), and geoengineering (e.g., low-cost, long-life miniaturized wireless sensors for greenhouse and other toxic gases/species). Systems may be based on advances in biological olfactory research, gene editing, synthetic biology, electronic nose technologies, materials science, chemistry, analyte preparation technologies, signal transduction technologies, biomanufacturing, printed electronics, bio-hybrid systems, neuromorphic systems, detection algorithms, AI and machine learning, brain-machine interfaces, and robotics.
  • Creating benchmarks and standards, calibration techniques, training data sets, and data management and storage platforms. Deliverables may include, but are not limited to, simulants, rapid sensor calibration techniques in context, standardized methodologies for collection and annotation of data from biological and chemical sensors operating in diverse real-world conditions, and open repositories for large-scale, sensor-derived datasets created with broader community participation.
  • Development of models for integration across modalities for data fusion, inter-device transferability, and source localization in diverse contexts to generate real-time, reliable, and quantifiable results. These could include models based on advances in fate and transport and adaptive modeling, transfer learning, and dimensionality-reduction strategies.

Track M: Bio-Inspired Design Innovations

  • Development of materials with features such as programmable self-assembly, multi-modal sensing, computation, memory, adaptation, and healing and regenerative capabilities.
  • Novel manufacturing capabilities that harness advances in synthetic biology, bioengineering, nanofabrication, and 3D printing.
  • Engineering complex systems with novel properties based on principles of synthetic biology, bioengineering, and robotics or organismal biology (e.g., organoids, microbial consortia, collective swarms).
  • Computational modeling and theory-enabled methods and tools for bio-inspired designs.
  • Applications in areas including, but not limited to, environmental monitoring, bioremediation and preservation, sustainable materials, biological manufacturing, personalized healthcare, resilient infrastructure, and agriculture and food production.

A Letter of Intent (LOI) is required and must be selected to submit a Phase I proposal. Phase 1 involves forming and working with a cohort using the award (up to $750,000 over 9 months) to further develop the convergence research ideas and to identify important partnerships and resources to accelerate the project. Phase 2 projects (up to $5,000,000 over 24 months) are competitively selected from the Phase 1 cohort and focus on producing a deliverable research prototype.

The solicitation is not yet available but anticipated within the coming month; a link to last year’s Program Solicitation can be found below.  

View 2022 Solicitation Join Webinar

Internal Grants Program (IGP) 2023 Faculty Awards

Konrad Dabrowski - SENR, $55,000.00: Atlantic salmon biotechnology and conservation of biodiversity - one species, one focus, one product - immense opportunity, Immediate Needs Program

Ashley Leach - Entomology, $54,775.00: Pollinators, Pests and Pathogens: limiting agrichemical synergies to improve pollinator health, New Research Incentive Program

Kichoon Lee - Animal Sciences, $25,000.00: Validation of production efficiency of genome-edited duck in myostatin gene, Intellectual Property Accelerator Program

Chia-Hua Lin - Entomology, $54,980.00: Time to spray, the clever way: Identifying the optimal timing for pesticide application during soybean bloom while minimizing impact on pollinators, New Researcher Incentive Program

Laura Lindsey - HCS, $54,998.00: Battle for the Belt: Corn vs. Soybean' - Which Crop Should Be Planted First?, Immediate Needs Program

Osler Ortez - HCS, $54,356.00: Agronomic Management Intensities and Input Combinations Effects on Corn Physiology, Yield, and System's Profitability, New Researcher Incentive Program

Kayla Perry - Entomology, $55,000.00: Validation of production efficiency of genome-edited duck in myostatin gene, New Researcher Inventive Program

Sarah Short - Entomology, $54,266.00: Effects of a microsporidian parasite on the immune defense of the disease vector mosquito Aedes aegypti, New Researcher Incentive Program

Hua Wang - FST, $55,000.00: Antibiotic Resistome in Fermented Foods and Probiotics for Mitigation, Immediate Needs Program

Events & Opportunities

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