The Southern California Clinical and Translational Science Institute is seeking applications for team building activities for up to $3,000 each from research teams.  This mechanism is intended to provide rapid funding for activities that promote the SC CTSI goal of assembling new multidisciplinary or transdisciplinary teams focused on clinical and community research, and those that are grounded in the team science principles ( principles. Examples include, but are not limited to:

  • Conference/Workshops/Seminars: 

    • Events may be held virtually or in person, but choice of rationale must be provided
    • Highest priority will be given to topics and formats that are focused on strategies for building new collaborations between individuals and/or groups from diverse disciplines and/or which apply team science principles. Registration must be broadly available to the SC CTSI affiliated community. The proposals should provide a proposed agenda, list of participants and proposed virtual platform.  Follow-up meeting plans and communication plans are also required as well as evidence of commitment from key stakeholders.  The contributions of the SC CTSI must be recognized in all meeting promotions.

  • New team development: 
    • Highest priority will be given to activities focused on development of new research partnerships across disciplines (brainstorming to engage specialists from different disciplines to address clinical and community research questions, landscape analysis, white paper development). Proposals should describe how the activities will be focused on building a successful collaborative, multidisciplinary or transdisciplinary team capable of moving forward in a new research direction and securing new research funding.


  • Crowdsourcing (Citizen Science): 
    • Highest priority will be given to research teams exploring crowdsourcing mechanisms to engage large communities of individuals and to work collaboratively to accomplish a defined task or find a solution for a defined problem that will take a longer time and/or more money to achieve in a traditional research setting.  The proposal should describe how the specific problems or tasks relate to clinical and community research, the advantage of using crowdsourcing vs traditional research methods, and the strategies to engage stakeholders to participate. Several strategies can be proposed in the same proposal if the intent is to compare the effectiveness of each recruitment method. 


  • Other:
    • Pitch us team science idea to foster multidisciplinary team science skills and team effectiveness

For all proposals, a clear description of the unique contributions of team members, any existing collaborative relationships between the team members, and the organization of the team is required.


Preference and highest priority will be given to projects that demonstrate a clear path for new engagement of individuals from diverse backgrounds and disciplines in addressing challenges in clinical and community research.  For all proposals, a clear description of the unique contributions of team members, any existing collaborative relationships between the team members, and the organization of the team is required.


  • Full-time faculty members at USC and CHLA as of the date of the award are eligible to apply as PI. 
  • Postdocs, residents, fellows, students, and community members can serve as co-PIs.
  • Investigators may only submit one application as PI or Co-PI.  However, a PI can be on more than one grant if he/she participates as a co-investigator.

Award Conditions

  • Participation in a 1-hour online CTSI team building training encompassing principles and practicalities
  • Allow the SC CTSI to learn with your team.  SC CTSI is interested in understanding best practices of team building in biomedical research.  CTSI team building program staff may request to be present in team building activities as observers or to virtually interview team members to better understand the effectiveness of the team building activities.  

Virtual Pre-submission Consultation

Pre-submission consultation with SC CTSI Research Development team is required. This consultation will enable you to focus your proposal and understand some of the unique features of this voucher mechanism.  SC CTSI Research Development team can rapidly determine whether the proposed aims meet the mission of this funding mechanism. If requested, the SC CTSI Research Development team will work with you to develop a complete activity plan to achieve your team building goals.


One renewal for up to $5000 is allowable for teams that have demonstrated a multidisciplinary composition and a commitment to work together toward a specific research goal by pursuing an extramural funding opportunity directly or after receipt of additional internal seed funds intended to establish a research center. A clear description of how the second cycle of funding will lead to an extramural funding application is required. Examples of possible activities include, but are not limited to, recruiting community members to participate in the research design (e.g., focus group), inclusion of participants from other CTSA hubs, attending and presenting in the Association for Clinical and Translational Science (ACTS) or the Science of Team Science annual meetings, and supporting publication fees reporting on project outcomes for open access journals.  

Pre-submission consultation with SC CTSI Research Development team is required.



  • Arial font, 11pt
  • Margins: minimum 0.5 inch
  • No appendices
  • Include page numbers and table of contents


Please include one PDF file including the following information:

  1. Research Proposal (maximum 2 pages including any literature references) including:
    • Objectives including a rationale for how the event or activity will promote team building
    • Activity Details including any anticipated agenda, schedule, speakers and virtual platform (if applicable and note if confirmed);
    • Target Audience/Collaborators including a brief description of the expected outcome and defined next steps as well as a description of the methods that will be used to assess impact
    • Future Directions of the proposed work
  2. Budget ($3,000 maximum) Use the Required PHS 398 Budget Form, Page 4 or download the budget form HERE.  Award expenditures must comply with the NIH Grants Policy Statement and the Uniform Guidance OMB A-81. Indirect costs are not allowed, including sub-contracts funded by SC CTSI pilot awards. Cost sharing and attempts to raise funds from other sources are encouraged.
  3. Budget Justification Justify all costs fully. Provide detailed information for all requested items.
  4. NIH Biosketch of Principal Investigators (4-page max for each individual)
  5. Letters of Support(s).  Include if needed to confirm access to other resources or matching funds.
  6. (For renewal submission only - OPTIONAL) 3-min video pitch. A lay summary about the team-building goal and progress and reason for additional funding.


Rolling application, funding available for successful applications within 4-6 weeks.

NIH Funding Acknowledgment: Important - All publications resulting from the utilization of SC CTSI resources are required to credit the SC CTSI grant by including the NIH funding acknowledgment and must comply with the NIH Public Access Policy.