Departmental Innovator Grant Program

The Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences Small Grant Program, launched in 2015, was designed to promote research and collaborative scholarly projects advancing the academic interests of our faculty and the strategic themes of our department.  Rebranded as the Departmental Innovator Grant Program in 2018, awards include Pilot Studies in novel scientific areas that have high potential to lead to competitive grant applications and Small Scholarly Projects related to education, clinical care, community outreach, and health systems issues, such as health care quality.

FY2020 Request for Proposals

In addition to neuroscience, clinical innovation and educational projects, special attention will be given to the following topics:

  • Inclusion, belonging, and mental health
  • Climate change, environmental devastation, and mental health
  • Gun violence and mental health
  • Community partnership and mental health
  • Humanities and well-being

Eligibility Criteria

  • Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences faculty on the Medical Center Line (MCL), University Tenure Line (UTL), and Non-Tenure Line (NTL), Clinician Educators (CE), Clinical Instructors, and Instructors are invited to apply. Please note that PI waivers are not required for this funding opportunity.
  • Each faculty member and Instructor can serve as PI on only one application.
  • Affiliates, graduate students, residents*, fellows, postdoctoral scholars, and research associates are not eligible to serve as Principal Investigators and are encouraged to apply with the leadership of a PI-eligible faculty member or Instructor mentor.
  • Multiple PI projects are permitted, but one individual must be designated as the project leader for ease of communication. The project leader must have their primary appointment in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences.

*If you are a resident in Psychiatry and are going to be requesting protected time, please discuss this accommodation with your Division Chief prior to submission

Applicants should propose projects that are feasible and can be completed within 12-18 months.
No extensions are permitted.

Awardees will be notified on or before November 4th, 2019 with funding to begin on January 6, 2020

Selection Process

A review committee will evaluate proposals based on scientific merit, feasibility, relevance to departmental priorities, likelihood to lead to future research opportunities/funding, and the strength of the PI and investigative team.

In addition to neuroscience, clinical innovation and educational projects, special attention will be given to the following topics:

  • Inclusion, belonging and mental health
  • Climate change and environmental devastations and mental health
  • Gun violence and mental health
  • Community partnership and mental health
  • Humanities and well-being


Recipients are requested to provide interim reports at 4 months (05/06/20) and at 12 months (01/06/21), a final report at termination (07/01/21), and a follow-up report (07/01/22). Publications resulting from the work should acknowledge the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences Innovator Grants. Once the funded projects are announced, it is the PI’s responsibility to directly consult with Stanford’s regulatory bodies (IRB, APLAC, etc.) to ensure that the proposed project is conducted in accordance with all federal, institutional, and ethical guidelines for research. Recipients will be asked to present a poster at the June 2021 Department Retreat or at other appropriate venues.

Application Guidelines

By 6:00PM, October 4, 2019, please submit one PDF file containing the following in the order listed below via the online application with the file name: “LASTNAME_2020Innovator.pdf”

All proposal applications should use at least 11-point font size, 1-inch margins for all pages, with standard word and single line spacing. Pages should be numbered consecutively at the bottom right. The page header should contain the name of the Project Leader and a short title.

Application Components

  1. Title Page (1-page limit):
    1. 2020 Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences Innovator Grants
    2. Project Type – Pilot or Scholarly
    3. Project title
    4. Name(s), title(s), and email(s) of PI or Co-PIs
    5. Name(s), title(s), department(s), school(s), and email(s) of co-investigators (if applicable)
    6. One sentence summary of the proposal
    7. Amount of funding requested
  2. Project Proposal (2-page limit):
    Two pages including any/all figures, excluding references. Hyperlinks to relevant published papers are encouraged. Preliminary data is not required, but may be included. No appendices are allowed. Include the following:
    1. Problem statement
    2. Specific Aims
    3. Project plan, including timeline
    4. Description of potential impact
    5. Up to 5 references
  3. Budget (1-page budget and budget justification)
    The budget should reflect the period of time funds are requested and can include salary (including PI and research personnel with corresponding fringe benefits including TGP), equipment, project supplies, food, and support for community collaborations. The budget may not include honoraria for Stanford University faculty or staff members. Funds cannot be directed to subcontracts or to discretionary accounts. Please note that the School of Medicine has a mandatory 3% telecommunications charge on all salary. Indirect costs are not applicable.

  4. Investigator Biographies (1-page)
    Short, one paragraph biographies (<300 words) for PI/Co-PIs, co-investigators, and/or key personnel should be provided. Text should include titles, academic rank, and key achievements. These can be hyperlinked to longer form University profiles.

Proposals that do not conform to the above guidelines will be returned without review.
All grants will be scored, but detailed feedback will not be provided to the applicants.

Please direct all inquiries to:

Aimee-Noelle Swanson, Ph.D.
Director of Research Development, Integrity, and Strategy
Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences
Stanford School of Medicine
(650) 736-4559

Funded Projects by Year

Pilot Studies

  • Manpreet Singh, M.D., M.S. (PI), Nolan Williams, M.D.; Hugh Brent Solvason, Ph.D., M.D., Keith Sudheimer, Ph.D., and Antonio Hardan, M.D.
    Evaluating the efficacy and tolerability of targeted transcranial magnetic stimulation in yout
  • Richard Shaw, M.D. (PI), Booil Jo, Ph.D., and LaTrice L. Dowtin, Ph.D.
    Group-Based Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavior Therapy (TF-CBT) to Prevent Psychological Stress in Parents of Premature Infants
  • Peter van Roessel, M.D., Ph.D. (PI), Booil Jo, Ph.D., Chi-Ming Chen, Ph.D., and Carolyn Rodriguez, M.D., Ph.D.
    Vestibular Neuromodulation of Insight: A Pilot Study in Obsessive-Compulsive Spectrum Disorders
  • Luis de Lecea, Ph.D. (PI), Jeremy Borniger, Ph.D., Andrew Krystal, M.D., (UCSF), Aric Prather, Ph.D. (UCSF), and Brice Gaudilliere, M.D., Ph.D. (Anesthesia)
    Linking Brain to Immunity via Deep Brain Stimulation and Mass Cytometry
  • Andrea Goldstein-Piekarski, Ph.D. (PI) and Nolan Williams, M.D.
    Sleep as a Mechanistic Target and Predictive Biomarker of an accelerated rTMS Intervention for Depression and Suicidality
  • John Leikauf, M.D. (PI), Leanne Williams, Ph.D., and Carlos Correa, BS
  • Daryn Reicherter, M.D. (PI) and Ryan Matlow, Ph.D.
    Expansion of Trauma Mental Health Outcomes Data Collection in Survivors for Advocacy in Three Different Legal Contexts
  • Jong Yoon, M.D. (PI) and Daniel Jurafsky
    Developing Automated Methods for Characterizing Speech and Language Disturbances in Schizophrenia

Small Scholarly Projects

  • Thalia Robakis, M.D., Ph.D. (PI) and Jane Kim, Ph.D.
    Maternal attachment style in relation to parenting practices and child development