NIH Director's New Innovator Award
Funding opportunities for unusually creative early stage investigators
Part of the High-Risk, High-Reward Research program, the award supports exceptionally creative early career investigators who propose innovative, high-impact projects in the biomedical, behavioral or social sciences within the NIH mission.
- Must have Early Stage Investigator status (completed doctoral degree or postgraduate clinical training within last 10 years and never received an NIH R01 or equivalent award)
- Single PI only
- No preliminary data required
- $1.5 million in direct costs disbursed in first year of 5-year project period
- Minimum of 25% research effort
The NIH Director’s New Innovator Award (DP2 mechanism), established in 2007, supports highly innovative research from promising Early Stage Investigators (defined as those within 10 years of completing their terminal research degree or postgraduate clinical training and who have not yet received substantial NIH support). No detailed experimental plan or preliminary data are required. The major component of the application is a 10-page essay describing (1) the significance of the problem/challenge being addressed; (2) the general approach to be taken to address the problem/challenge; (3) why the project is unusually innovative; and (4) the qualities and experiences of the investigator that make him/her especially well-suited to pursue such research.
The NIH Director’s New Innovator Award is part of the Common Fund’s High-Risk, High-Reward Research program, which was created to accelerate the pace of biomedical, behavioral and social science discoveries by supporting exceptionally creative scientists with highly innovative research. The program seeks to identify scientists with high-impact ideas that may be risky or at a stage too early to fare well in the traditional peer review process. The program encourages creative, outside-the-box thinkers to pursue exciting and innovative ideas in any area of biomedical, behavioral or social science research relevant to the NIH mission. The program houses three additional awards – the NIH Director’s Pioneer Award, NIH Director’s Transformative Research Award, and NIH Director’s Early Independence Award – and is managed by the Office of the Director in partnership with other component NIH Institutes and Centers.
- New Application & Award Guidance is available with more information on how to apply and sample applications.
Q&A Webinar (June 25, 2020)
NIH program and review staff discussed the funding opportunity and answered questions from prospective applicants in a pre-application interactive Q&A webinar. The video and slides of the webinar are now available. An audio described version of the webinar is forthcoming and will be posted when available. If you need assistance before the audio described version is posted, please contact us at NewInnovatorAwards@mail.nih.gov.
Informational Video (May 2020)
Learn more about the eligibility requirements, award cycle, application process, review process, and award requirements for the NIH Director's New Innovator Award in this short 2.5-minute video.
This page last reviewed on October 22, 2020