While it might not be the most glamorous aspect of making the next great research breakthrough or discovery, it is one of the most necessary.
We’re talking about money. As in grants, fellowships, scholarships, and awards.
Because it is such a ubiquitous part of the academic experience, we took a closer look at the trends and habits of researchers looking for funding opportunities.
Delving into data that tracked Pivot* activity from January 2015 through July 2016, we discovered that nearly a quarter of these users took advantage of the advanced search function. This allowed us to zero in on the specific criteria they included in their searches.
One of the options for an advanced search is to filter opportunities by keywords. Either used alone or in combination with other keywords, “Health & Medicine” are the most frequently used keywords in Pivot.
Parameters: Half of the users doing an advanced search in Health & Medicine don’t narrow the parameters any further, but among the remaining 50%, these are the top 5 areas they were exploring:
1. Postdoctoral fellowships
2. Breast cancer
Funding Type: While 41% of users seeking funding opportunities within Health & Medicine do not specify what kind of funding they are seeking. Among the remaining users, these are the top 5 kinds of opportunities they searched for:
2. Research training, scholarship or fellowship
3. Postdoctoral award
4. Training, scholarship or fellowship
5. Prize or award
Sponsor Type: Nearly 25% of these users also searched according to types of sponsors for funding. These are the top 5 that are specified:
1. Other nonprofit organization, private foundation
2. Academic institution
3. Commercial, other nonprofit foundation, professional society or association
4. Academic institution, multinational organization, other nonprofit private foundation, professional society or association
5. Private foundation
One fact that stuck out to us in reviewing this data is who is doing the searches for these funding opportunities in Health & Medicine. We were inclined to assume that a bigger chunk of the searches were being conducted by administrative staff. However, our data revealed that 75% of these searches are performed by faculty and non-administrative users.
More than 60% also searched opportunities according applicant type with the most searched requirement being Graduate Student; followed by academic institution; academic institution, Ph.D./M.D./other professional, new faculty/new investigator; Ph.D./M.D./other professional; and academic institution, new faculty/new investigator, Ph.D./M.D./other professional.
The more options a researcher has for exploring funding opportunities, the better the chances are for finding the funding that best aligns with their project, needs, experience and area of interest or expertise.
Being able to filter according to specific criteria can save precious time – perhaps the only resource more limited than funds. With advanced search options, users can weed out the opportunities that don’t apply to them and focus more attention on the grants, scholarships, fellowships, etc. that they do qualify for.
Think of it like a dating website in which you set up your search to eliminate all of the qualities you might consider deal breakers in a potential partner.
In a similar way, there are billions of dollars out there available for academic funding. It can be overwhelming trying to figure out how to find the best matches. Advanced searching enables a more effective and efficient process for finding a funding Prince Charming.
Pivot is a database that provides research administrators, research development professionals, and individual faculty members the edge—by bringing together the right research opportunities, funding, and people—quickly and easily. It provides global and local connections that strengthen research by exploring new avenues for funding and collaboration—for faculty, staff researchers, and graduate students.
Pivot is a power tool that
- Provides access to the most comprehensive global source of funding opportunities—totaling billions of dollars and growing
- Identifies researcher expertise from within or outside of your organization from millions of profiles from leading research organizations worldwide
- Fosters collaboration by cultivating essential partnerships and alliances
- Enhances communication, monitoring, and tracking amongst individual faculty, teams, or researchers and the Research Development office
- Allows the focus to be on winning the necessary awards and grants
- Builds strong network connections for future opportunities