Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Interdisciplinary Research Leaders Program 2018

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Interdisciplinary Research Leaders Program 2018

Deadline: March 14, 2018

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation is accepting applications for the Interdisciplinary Research Leaders Program. This call for applications seeks teams of researchers and community members who are committed to working together to produce community-relevant, action-oriented research to improve health and well-being. Funding to support the work of the team will go to one organization. This applicant organization will identify the team members on its application.

The broad goal of the Interdisciplinary Research Leaders program is to produce diverse interdisciplinary leaders who conduct and apply high-quality, community-engaged, action-oriented, equity-focused health research in order to drive improvements in the health of communities. Accordingly, the program will recruit and select applicant organizations represented by teams of three people (“IRL team”): two mid-career researchers and one community member to become IRL program fellows.

IRL teams will join together as a diverse cohort of fellows that will participate in a three-year program. During this time, fellows will receive: leadership training; opportunities to learn and apply cutting-edge research methods; expert mentoring; networking opportunities; and both fellowship and research funds. With these experiences, IRL fellows will be better-equipped to effect change and become the next generation of leaders in population health and health equity research.


Total awards will be up to $350,000 per grantee organization for the duration of the three-year program. This amount includes grant funds to support the ongoing participation of all team members for all three years and a research project award. Note that additional resources, in the form of training, collaborative opportunities, and travel expenses, are also provided independent of this award.


  • The applicant must be an organization based in the United States or its territories.
  • Preference will be given to applicants that are either public entities or nonprofit organizations that are tax-exempt under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code and are not private foundations or Type III supporting organizations. The Foundation may require additional documentation.
  • Applicants should have the administrative and financial capacity and experience to accept the award and to be able to distribute funds consistent with the permitted use of funds described herein, and within the approved budget. This includes having proper governance, sufficient staffing and strong policies, procedures, and internal controls.
  • Applicants must be represented by a three-person team that will participate in grant activities. Each team must be comprised of three mid-career individuals: two researchers and one community partner. We define “researchers” as people with a terminal degree in their field (e.g., PhD) or extensive research or evaluation experience. The third individual must be a non-researcher “community partner.” We define community partners as individuals with close ties to a community of interest who do not regularly engage in research as a main function of their job; these individuals must have the potential to take action on the issue themselves or have relationships with entities that can take action. There are no strict rules for who is or is not mid-career, but we anticipate that mid-career applicants have approximately five years of high-quality experience and are not within 10 years of retirement.


Complete the online application.

For more information, visit Interdisciplinary Research Leaders Program.