Funding Opportunities

IISG provides funding to researchers in Illinois and Indiana who are working on issues of importance to the southern Lake Michigan region. If you would like to receive emails related to funding competitions, including when they are open, please subscribe to our mailing list.

Work can typically be completed outside of the immediate Lake Michigan vicinity, provided strong connections are made between potential impacts of the proposed work and the southern Lake Michigan region or surrounding communities.

Funding awarded by Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant is competitively awarded following these procedures.

Applicants to Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant should review the following templates and guidance


One-year research projects: OPEN

Competitions happen as funding is available. Funding for development projects is typically $10,000-$25,000 for not more than one year. 

2021 Graduate Student Scholars
2021 Faculty Scholars

IISG scholars programs are professional networking and development opportunities for graduate students and faculty from institutes of higher learning in Illinois and Indiana who wish to develop extension, education, or communication capacities related to their scholarly interests. Awards are issued for one year and activities should be completed during that year.

This will be the third year of the IISG Faculty Scholars program. Descriptions of previous projects can be found here: New in 2021 is an opportunity for graduate students to seek funding to support their research and participate in professional development activities. IISG expects to support 6–8 Graduate Student Scholars and 3–4 Faculty Scholars in 2021.

Applicants for both opportunities (graduate students or faculty) should submit materials to by 5 p.m. Central Time on March 12, 2021. An informational webinar was held Tuesday, February 16, 2021, at 2 p.m. Eastern Time. The recording can be found at

The full RFA can be found at Questions regarding eligibility or submission requirements may be directed to Carolyn Foley at or by phone at 765-494-3601.

Two-year research projects: OPEN

Competitions typically occur every two years. Funding is typically $40,000-$120,000 per year for two years. 

Prospective PIs must submit a preproposal to be considered for funding. Preproposals should be submitted by 5 p.m. CST (6 p.m. EST) February 1, 2021 to Please indicate “2022 Biennial Grant Preproposal” in the subject line.

The full RFP can be found at Questions regarding eligibility or submission requirements may be directed to Carolyn Foley at or by phone at 765-494-3601.


National competitions: OPEN

The National Sea Grant Office periodically requests proposals for research and outreach projects in topics of regional and national importance. Past competitions have focused on aquatic invasive species and aquaculture. Topics for future competitions will vary.

Addressing the Impacts of Multiple Stressors on Shellfish Aquaculture through Research/Industry Partnerships

Letters of Intent Due: December 15, 2020
Full Proposal Due: March 16, 2021
Eligible Applicants: United States institutions of higher education; other nonprofits; commercial organizations; federal, state, local, and tribal governments.

Brief Description: The National Sea Grant Office (NSGO) and the Ocean Acidification Program (OAP) are funding a joint competition to fund proposals that seek to establish, continue, and/or expand collaborations between researchers and the shellfish aquaculture industry. Specifically, applications to this competition should utilize new or existing research/industry partnerships to study how ocean and coastal acidification in combination with other stressors impacts shellfish aquaculture. Applications must include at least one researcher and one shellfish grower acting as co-Principal Investigators, and the proposed work must utilize a co-production of knowledge framework. Total funding for this competition includes up to $2,000,000 in federal funds to support 2-6 projects. Each project will be funded at the approximate level of $100,000 – $300,000 per year for 1-3 years.


American Lobster Research Program 

Due Date: April 20, 2021
Eligible Applicants: Any individual; any public or private corporation, partnership, or other association or entity (including any Sea Grant College, Sea Grant Institute or other institution); or any State, political subdivision of a State, Tribal government or agency or officer thereof.

Brief Description: This funding opportunity will support research on how the American Lobster and its fishery are being impacted by environmental change in the Gulf of Maine, Georges Bank, and southern New England. The program seeks applications from research teams and encourages research partnerships between state agencies, academia, and/or industry stakeholders that address life-history parameters, distribution and abundance, species interactions, and/or bait alternatives. Sea Grant anticipates awarding between five to ten research projects totaling between $1 million and $2 million dollars in 2021. Projects must have a maximum duration of two years.

Read formal announcement on NOAA-OAR-SG-2021-2006808


Other national competitions are listed here:

Fellowships & Scholarships

Find additional opportunities for faculty and graduate students on our Fellowships & Scholarships page.