The George Washington University

Call for Research Funding Proposals

The Institute for Data, Democracy & Politics (IDDP) is pleased to announce a call for funding proposals in support of research projects aligned with IDDP’s mission. 

IDDP's mission is to help the public, journalists, and policymakers understand digital media’s influence on public dialogue and opinion, and to develop sound solutions to disinformation and other ills that arise in these spaces.


Any faculty member employed by The George Washington University is eligible to apply for funding.

We anticipate funding 3-6 research projects, at a range between $25,000 and $100,000 each. (The upper-limit request is $100,000.) Funding may be used for personnel and non-personnel expenses critical for implementation of the study. Non-allowable expenses include travel (unless required to conduct the research), conference fees, and indirect expenses. Funds may be used to support faculty salary for no more than two summer months, two academic year months, or one course buy-out. (One summer and one academic year month could be supported, but no other combinations are permitted.) However, course buy-outs may not be used if the faculty member in question has a 1-1 or lower teaching load during the 2021-2022 academic year. Expenses for research staff, students, and equipment may be included in the proposal.

Proposals will be evaluated by a body of external experts, with final decisions made in conjunction with IDDP’s Research Council and IDDP’s Director. Evaluations will give particular priority to projects that:

  • Focus on historically marginalized communities;
  • Involve interdisciplinary collaboration -- understood as cross-school and/or cross-disciplinary;
  • Involve junior scholars;
  • Build bridges between academic research, on the one hand, and journalists, policymakers, and/or civil society representatives, on the other;
  • Demonstrate careful attention to scientific, legal, and other research best practices, including data ethics;
  • Are feasible in scope;
  • Are reasonable in cost.


Projects should be 6-12 months in duration, with a start date no earlier than September 1, 2021 and an end date no later than August 31, 2022.

However, in order to meet our obligation to our funder, IDDP will give priority to projects that expend at least 50% of the project funds by May 31, 2022. Please keep this in mind when preparing the project timeline and budget.

Proposals should be no more than 10 single-spaced pages (Arial, 11-point font, standard 1-inch margins, single-spaced), excluding references, and contain a(n):

  • Abstract of no more than 250 words;
  • Scope of work, including research questions, objectives, hypotheses (if applicable) and methodology;
  • Outputs or deliverables;
  • Project timeline, linked to outputs/deliverables;
  • Budget (using the template available HERE);
  • Budget justification (using the template available HERE; for all personnel, please note % effort on the project and how that effort will be covered, e.g., “one month salary”, “in-kind”, etc.);
  • Summary statement of no more than 500 words detailing how the project aligns with IDDP’s mission and, if applicable, how it matches one or more of the first four funding priorities listed above;
  • List of project personnel, including postdoctoral researchers and PhD students who will be involved, with bios of no more than 200 words each.

Full CVs should also be included for project personnel. These do not count toward the 10-page proposal limit.

Additional Requirements

  • In order to comply with obligations set by IDDP’s funder, no-cost extensions will not be permitted. At the end of the project period, unspent funds will be reabsorbed into IDDP’s general funds.
  • An interim report will be due at the mid-point of the project. A final report will be due one month after completion.
  • All project personnel must report conflicts of interest.
  • IDDP requires that all data collected and/or created using Institute funds must be made available for use by all IDDP affiliates. Project PIs have a “first-use” right to publish with such data, but after initial publication, these data must be made available for use in other IDDP research.
  • All publications resulting from the funding must acknowledge support from IDDP and the Institute’s funder, the Knight Foundation.

Proposals should be submitted via email to IDDP Associate Director David Broniatowski ([email protected]) by July 15, 2021. Any questions may be directed to Dr. Broniatowski.