The Human Factors and Ergonomics Society (HFES) continues its seed grant program in support of research and programming that investigates and addresses the intersections of Human Factors/Ergonomics and Anti-Racism/Anti-Bias. This grant program will stimulate and support projects and research intended to improve our understanding of and reduce/eliminate racism and bias in the systems, environments, products and tools with which humans interact. Seed grants fund the early stages of projects with the potential for broad impact or provide preliminary data for future state, federal, foundation or other grant proposal mechanisms. The long-term goal of this grant program is to identify evidence‐based solutions to the problems of racism and bias.
HFES serves the needs of members and the public by promoting and advancing the discovery and exchange of knowledge concerning the characteristics of human beings that are applicable to the design of systems, products, tools, and environments of all kinds. HFES envisions a future in which the reach, relevance, and quality of human factors/ergonomics are greatly expanded by enriching the science and enhancing its impact on solving societal problems by embracing outward‐facing collaborations. Human Factors professionals are experts in understanding interactions among humans and other systems elements. Therefore, we can and should contribute to the dismantling of systemic racism.
In summer 2020, the HFES Executive Council approved a Statement of Commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and an associated Action Plan. Included in that action plan is the following Action Item:
- Create a process and identify funds for awarding competitive seed grants for new faculty or new practitioners conducting research or programming at the intersections of HF/E, anti‐racism and/or anti‐bias.
This seed grant program is consistent with the HFES Code of Ethics, which in its Preamble states: The Human Factors and Ergonomics Society is dedicated to the betterment of humankind through the scientific inquiry into and application of those principles that relate to the interface of humans with their natural, residential, recreational, and vocational environments and the procedures, practices, and design considerations that increase a human's performance and safety at those interfaces.
Funding and other Limits:
Grant limits are $5,000 USD each. This includes a limit of 10% overhead/facilities & administrative costs. Grants do not support personnel salaries. Grants can provide support for hourly student workers.
An individual may not appear as key personnel (PI, co‐PI, co‐Investigator, key personnel) on more than one grant in a funding cycle. Serving as PI, co‐PI, or co‐Investigator, an individual is ineligible for more than two such seed grants.
All HFES members are eligible to apply (new faculty and new practitioners will be given priority). Faculty/practitioner teams are strongly encouraged to apply. Inter‐institutional proposals are welcomed, though it is expected that external collaborators would bring their own funds to the project.
How to Apply:
Proposals must include the following in a single PDF document:
- Project description (3 page limit) – State the proposal's broad, long‐term objectives and specific aims, making reference to the intersection of HF/E and anti‐racism/anti‐bias that is being addressed. Describe the project plan and methods for achieving the stated goals. Refer to evaluation criteria (below) for additional guidance. The project description should be informative to other people working in the same or related fields and insofar as possible understandable to a scientifically or technically literate reader. The list of references is not included in the page limit.
- Dissemination plan (1 page) – This should include an interim (at midpoint or 6 months, whichever is sooner) and a final report to the HFES D&I Committee (at conclusion or 12 months, whichever is sooner). Award recipients are also expected to present their results at the HFES Annual Meeting within 2 years of receiving the grant.
- Human subjects (1 page) – If proposing research that involves human subjects, provide information on the protection of those human subjects (even if the research is anticipated to be exempt) and provide a short description of the Institutional Review Board (IRB) process at your institution.
- Budget summary, including justification (2 pages)
- List of key personnel (name, degrees, affiliation, role on the project) (1 page)
- Curriculum vitae for each member of the proposal team (limit 3 pages each)
- Proposals are due by 6:00 p.m. on 15 June 2022
- Email proposals to Abigail R. Wooldridge, Chair of the HFES Diversity and Inclusion Committee. Email address: email@example.com
The criteria are the extent to which the project:
- Increases the understanding of the problems at the intersections of HF/E and racism/bias (examples of application areas: healthcare systems, education systems, employment systems, technological innovations, etc.).
- If a programming proposal, a primary outcome should include practical guidance on reducing racism, reducing bias, advancing opportunity, or strengthening inclusion.
- If a research proposal, the research should have a research‐to‐practice focus (r2p).
- Demonstrates a high probability for short‐ or long‐term impact.
- Is technically adequate, meeting professional standards for internal validity, external validity, appropriate methodology, appropriate statistical analyses, comprehensiveness of review (if the project involves a literature review), and/or theoretical rigor and soundness. Programming and research proposals must be designed to generate/provide evidence in support of outcome claims.
- Is feasible. The project can be completed with the funding available to the team and in approximately one year’s time. (For the first grants, timelines should be no longer than one year. Longer timeframes may be considered in the future.)
- Has potential for results to generalize beyond the context of the proposed project.
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