BWH Health & Technology Innovation Fund: 2017 Request for Applications

The BWH Health & Technology Innovation Fund seeks applications for basic/clinical/translational science-focused as well as commercialization-oriented research projects from scientists and clinicians at Brigham & Women’s Hospital. The Fund is a combined venture supported by the Brigham Research Institute and the BWH Health & Technology Sub-Committee which is composed of friends of the Brigham from the philanthropic world.


The Health & Technology Innovation Grants will fund high-reward, high-impact (whether scientific or commercial) projects. Basic, clinical and translational projects that have the scientific merit and novelty to significantly advance the progress of research in their field and; research or clinical projects that have the commercialization potential to be transformed into innovative products or new services or companies or that can impact patient care at BWH are the types of projects that will be considered.


Grants will be awarded on a competitive basis with up to three non-renewable $50,000 grants available this year. Applications will be evaluated and ranked for funding priority on the basis of a strategic and scientific review.  Ultimate selection will depend on input from a review committee and recommendations from the BRI Executive Committee (EC).  Please note that the selection process will involve review by both BWH faculty (clinicians/researchers) as well as non-BWH reviewers including donors, venture capitalists, representatives of the biopharma/device industry and other friends of the Brigham. The final selection round will be a ’shark tank’ (live pitch session) featuring the finalists and conducted as a closed door meeting with the review committee in attendance.






RFA Stages Timeline
RFA announcement Thu, Nov 9, 2017
Letter of intent due Wed, Jan 10, 2018
Full applications invited Mon, Feb 12, 2018
Full applications due/Notify Partners Innovation Tue, Mar 20, 2018
Finalists selected and notified/Send materials to reviewers at live pitch session and assign ‘champions’ Tue, Apr 24, 2018
Finalists prep session Thu, Apr 26, 2018
‘Shark Tank’ (Live pitch session) Tue, May 15, 2018


Funding start date Mon, Jul 2, 2018




  • All members of the BWH research community including BWH professional staff (ex. Nurses and other clinicians) and faculty members with instructor rank and above are invited to apply.
  • Individuals may serve as the Principal Investigator (PI) of only one proposal but may be co-PIs on multiple proposals
  • Winners from the previous year are not eligible to apply as PI
  • Principal Investigator has to be from BWH
  • Collaborations with other departments at BWH as well as other institutions are encouraged especially those that bring together new multi-disciplinary teams encompassing researchers, clinicians, engineers, entrepreneurs etc.
  • Applications seeking seed funding for planned RO1s, PO1s or similar will be eligible as would those seeking funding to establish a core resource for which there is a demonstrated need at BWH. Applications for equipment will not be considered.
  • Finalists MUST be available to participate in both the prep session on Apr 26th as well in the shark tank/live pitch session on May 15th
  • Recipient (PI of the proposal submitted) must remain with a primary appointment or a full time employee at BWH for the duration of the award. Award will otherwise be forfeited in a pro-rated fashion.


Review criteria

  • Projects must address a well-defined scientific/clinical problem or a well-defined diagnostic, therapeutic, device or digital health application
  • Projects must be scientifically meritorious and/or have an innovative approach
  • Novel and/or early-stage ideas that can significantly accelerate research progress or those with high potential for intellectual property/commercialization potential in the stated field will be given high funding priority
  • Projects should be focused and achievable, with a clear strategy and high potential to secure future external funding
  • The short-term and/or long-term impact (scientific, commercial, patient care or cost savings) of the project should be clearly articulated
  • Strength of team – The investigators must have the requisite skills and experience to carry out the project successfully



Review Process

  • Applications will be solicited per the timeline above. The review committee composed of BWH clinicians and researchers, Partners Innovation staff and non-BWH reviewers including donors, venture capitalists, representatives of the biopharma/device industry and other friends of the Brigham will review the letters of intent (LOI) and invite a subset of applicants to submit full applications
  • Following review of the full applications by the review committee, finalists will be invited to the closed-door shark tank/live pitch session which will be the final round of the RFA
  • Following the final round, the review committee will submit their funding recommendations to the BRI Executive Committee for approval.



  • All recipients will be obligated to provide a written report of activity (1 page limit) three, six and twelve months from the date on which funds are received and also meet with Brigham Research Institute (BRI) or Brigham Innovation Hub staff as applicable to discuss the progress of their project at these time points.
  • All recipients will be required to provide an oral status update to the BRI Research Oversight Committee and the BWH Health & Technology Sub-Committee at the end of one year of funding.
  • Grantees will notify the BRI when other grants are received as a result of this funding or if papers are published, patents are filed etc. as a result of this funding
  • Grantees will acknowledge the Brigham Research Institute (BRI) & the BWH Health & Technology Sub-Committee in publications, posters, grants, press releases and other professional recognition resulting from this funding support and will notify the BRI when such events are due to occur. Grantees will also acknowledge funding support from the BRI and the BWH Health & Technology Sub-Committee in all forums if new companies, products or services are established as a result of this funding.



Application Format

Letters of intent (due January 10, 2018 10:59pm) should be submitted online and will include the following:

  1. Applicant’s Name, Department and Division, BWH and HMS professional appointments, office or laboratory address, telephone number and e-mail address
  2. Title of research project to be supported
  3. Applicants must indicate names of collaborators and the institutions they are affiliated to
  4. PDF of letter of intent with a maximum of 300 words describing the project and clearly specifying the short-term and/or long-term impact (scientific, commercial, patient-care or cost savings) of the project.
  5. Applicants must indicate whether any invention disclosures or patents have been filed in connection with the project submitted


Click here to submit the LOI:


Invited full applications (due March 20, 2018, 10:59pm) should be submitted online (submission link will be provided to invited applicants) and must include the following:

  1. Applicant’s Name, Department and Division (if applicable), BWH and HMS professional appointments, telephone number and e-mail address
  2. Title of research project to be supported
  3. Project Proposal (5-page limit, excluding references):
    1. Introduction/Background
    2. Specific Aims
    3. Significance
    4. Experimental details, preliminary data (if any) and contributions of each team member. If it’s a project with commercial potential, please also include a brief, well-researched competitive overview of the marketplace
  4. Future plans ie how will this project be funded after this seed grant and how collaborators or IP will be secured or how piloting will be executed
  5. PDF biosketches of Principal Investigator, co-investigators, collaborators and other significant key personnel in NIH format
  6. Detailed budget for one year for a maximum of $50,000 direct costs
  7. Copy of human or animal use protocol approval letter (if applicable), indicating that it is current


By applying for the BWH Health & Technology Innovation Fund Grants, you agree to release and hold harmless BWH, the Health & Technology Innovation Fund and its subsidiaries, affiliates, societies, advertising and promotion agencies, partners, representatives, agents, successors, assigns, employees, officers and directors from any liability, illness, injury, death, loss, litigation, claim or damage that may occur, directly or indirectly, whether caused by negligence or not, from such Applicant’s participation in the BWH Health & Technology Innovation Fund Grant competition and/or his/her acceptance, possession, use, or misuse of any award or any portion thereof.