USDA/CSREES National Research Initiative Competitive Grants Program:

Following is important info about applying for the NRI Competitive Grants Program:

NRI Letters of Intent required:
Several NRI programs require a letter of intent prior to submission of the full application. From the letters of intent, USDA will select individuals to be invited to submit a completed application by the program’s deadline. Applications submitted to programs requiring a letter of intent without the proper invitation will be returned without review. The full list of Program Deadlines is available at: Note that several programs have letters of intent due in October (October 9, 2007):
44.0 Animal Protection and Biosecurity, NRI
23.1 Managed Ecosystems, NRI
51.8 Microbial Biology: Microbial Observatories, NRI
56.0 Plant Biology: Breeding, Education, NRI
56.0 Plant Biology: Environmental Stress, NRI
56.0 Plant BiologyL Gene Function, Regulation, NRI
Please copy the CALS Research Division on your letter of intents to USDA Thank you!

Cayuse is available and will be used for USDA/NRI submissions:
Cayuse424 is a web-based system campus has purchased for use in preparing applications. We’ve been using Cayuse for NIH submissions for the past year — it is a wonderful system, MUCH easier to use than the PureEdge tools available in With the addition of USDA to the federal agencies Cayuse is supporting, we will be using Cayuse for all USDA/NRI submissions. Training opportunities will be scheduled beginning in October to familiarize folks who will be submitting USDA/NRI applications with Cayuse.

For those who missed it:
Request for Applications — USDA/CSREES NRI Competitive Grants

The FY2008 National Research Initiative Program requests applications to support (1) high priority fundamental and mission-linked research of importance in the biological, environmental, physical, and social sciences relevant to agriculture, food, the environment, and rural communities and (2) competitively awarded research, extension, and education grants addressing key issues of national and regional importance to agriculture, forestry, and related topics. In FY 2008, CSREES anticipates that approximately $190 million will be available for support of this program. Of this amount, no more than 22 percent will be made available to fund integrated projects. The remaining funds will be used to fund research projects.

All applications must be submitted via Application deadlines begin in November. Review the request for applications carefully to determine the application deadline under which you will submit. Please work with CALS Research Division well in advance, to assure successful submission. Applicants should plan for electronic submissions to be completed a minimum of three days prior to deadline. As such, proposals need to be provided to CALS Research Division at least a week in advance of any deadline.

Note that several programs require “Letters of Intent.” Please be sure to copy CALS Research Division at on your notification to USDA.

Links to the full announcement are available through at:
Information is also available on the USDA/CSREES site at:

Stay tuned for additional information regarding NRI submissions and training opportunities in September, October, and November.