Write a grant application | Education 2022

A grant is a specified amount of money provided to you by a Russian or international organization to implement a project of public value. The assistance is provided free of charge under the conditions determined by the grant provider. One of the conditions for obtaining it is a positive assessment of your application. Here you have to understand that there is always less money for those who want to receive it. Therefore, the winner is the one who submitted the best subsidy application. At the same time, it is crucial to properly understand the mechanism of the applicant selection process, as well as the psychology of the people who carry out this process.

How do you write a grant application?
How do you write a grant application?


Step 1

If you already have a specific project, you must complete a written application to apply for a grant for that project. Like a commercial company prepares a business plan to convince donors to invest in the business, this application is necessary to persuade the donor to invest a certain amount of money in your project. However, an application differs from a business plan in that it receives money for a non-profit project, that is, for an unprofitable company.

Step 2

When preparing an application, you must keep the objective in mind: to convince donors (represented by the relevant committee, board of experts, committee) that it is your project that has the necessary merits that are of interest in any science: conceptual novelty, meaningful content and methodological accuracy. 

Step 3

All things being equal, the winner is the one in which all three of these advantages are most clearly traced. So that. As far as possible, it should meet not only the requirements for writing it but also the hidden expectations of the committee. It will also be constructive (especially when it comes to applied and humanitarian sciences) to convincingly demonstrate the usefulness and importance of the project to your country since most donor foundations do this intending to help the country as a whole. Therefore, the more clearly you demonstrate the importance of your project from this perspective, the better.

Step 4

When writing an application, be guided by the fact that they are seeking answers to three main questions:

1. What will we learn as a result of the project?

2. Why do you need to know this at all?

3. How can we ensure that the conclusions drawn are correct?

Step 5

Please note that, as a rule, there are many applications and that the committee has little time to decide. And they are unlikely to look for hidden answers to these questions. Therefore, the presentation of your text should be clear and straightforward. The best chance of getting attention is to put all of these answers in the first paragraph or the first page. Then definitely seize this opportunity. If your project is complicated to fit the paramount idea phrasing into a few lines and it can only be revealed gradually, still take the trouble to say something memorable for the reviewer, even after many hours of reading other applications. Maybe it will be a particular, catchy, non-standard statement. This increases the chance that your project will attract attention. 

Step 6

Many applications are peer-reviewed by multidisciplinary committees. Therefore, express your thoughts as clearly as possible, do not abuse professional jargon, and use only highly specialized terms if there are no analogs in the common language. Focus on the main idea of ​​your project. If you are sure that they are needed in the application, various details, additions, and examples are best to fit in the applications to facilitate its perception.

Step 7

It is also helpful to provide a small overview of the current state of play in your field and include as complete a bibliography as possible to indicate recent work in this field. In this case, it is necessary only to mention what is directly related to your topic. Bibliographies are considered a sign of the scientific approach and seriousness of the applicant, which is why they often receive special attention. A well-written bibliography shows that you have done severe preparatory work and ensures that your project becomes a new word in science and not a duplication of results already achieved by someone else. 

Step 8

Methodological canons in different sciences are different, and often they differ even within the same discipline. However, there are two general guidelines for making a positive impression with your application’s “methodology equipment.” First, tell us what kind of research work you have done and how you will use the results obtained in your project. Also, explain how much time you plan to spend on this and how you will spend it.

Step 9

Second, use the argument that solving these specific problems will help you solve the main problem of the project. Usually, the methods are described in the application in a very vague and vague way. For example, expressions such as “the relationship between X and Y will be considered.” What this means is entirely incomprehensible. Therefore, tell us in as much detail as possible what methods you plan to use for data analysis and, ultimately, what the criteria are for the authenticity of the results. The more clearly the reviewer understands what, why, and how exactly you are going to do it, the more favorably this will affect the fate of your application. 

Step 10

A well-structured application, such as a sonata usually ends with a return to the original theme. How do the research and the results relate to the main problem? How do you determine if your hypothesis was correct? All this must be reflected in the application. Also indicate what the result of the project will be: dissertation, book, article, or something else.

Step 11

When writing a good application, you should know that you cannot write it in 5 minutes. Therefore, do not postpone the case indefinitely. Start by writing a subsidy application. After writing it, reread it with a fresh mind, especially the first paragraph and the last part, and try to see it through the eyes of the reviewers.

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