Research Grant Programme

2014 Call for Proposals

The University of Guyana Science and Technology Support Project (UGSTSP), in collaboration with the Ministry of Education and World Bank announces the 2014 UG Low Carbon Development Research Grant Programme and invites research proposals relevant to the themes stated below

Programme Description

The objective of the Programme is to promote research relevant to Guyana’s Low Carbon Development Strategy (LCDS), with the aim of:

  1. generating knowledge products, which directly contribute to the LCDS; and
  2. supporting the development of a broader research/knowledge-generation culture at the UG.

Such knowledge products would include:

  1. formulation of public policy recommendations;
  2. development of LCDS-relevant services or products;
  3. acquisition of field research skills among UG graduates demanded in the labour market;
  4. production of industry-specific baseline information (e.g. water quality, timber supply, flora/fauna inventory) against which the impact of economic activities can be measured; and
  5. generation of socio economic data on groups affected by industrial development that are related to the LCDS.

Eligibility

Academic faculty members of the University of Guyana are eligible to apply. Priority will be given, where applicable, to proposals that involve external partners (NGOs, research institutes, foundations, private sector entities, communities, etc.), cost-sharing arrangements and cross disciplinary/Faculty/ School.

Proposals must be signed by the principal researcher and co-researchers (if applicable) and endorsed by the Dean/Director of the relevant Faculty/School.

Project Funding

The project will provide grant award ranging from US$5,000-US$50,000 (of an average size of US$15,000). Proposals with request for more than US$50,000 from the Project will not be considered.

The following cost categories are eligible for funding:

  • Equipment and consumables;
  • Literature, documentation, information, online literature search, postage and related contingencies;
  • Project related travel; and
  • Other research expenses (e.g. stipends to research assistants, hiring of guides for field-based data collection, etc).

In addition to costs for which grant funding is sought, any institutional cost sharing must also be specified in the budget section of the application. All funding categories above are eligible for institutional cost sharing.

Proposal Review Procedures

Panels to be selected from the Low Carbon Development Research Committee of the UG Science and Technology Support Project and experts external to the University of Guyana will evaluate proposals. Evaluation will be based on the criteria and scorecard stated below.

Research proposals will be subjected to reviews in accordance with the Environmental Management Framework for the Research Fund, Indigenous People's Planning Framework and Ethics Guidelines of the University. Applicants must ensure that the applicable forms in these safeguard documents and guidelines are completed and submitted with application.

Grievance Mechanism

In the event that the decision of the Low Carbon Development Research Committee is to reject the request for funding, the researcher(s) presenting the proposal reserves the right to appeal the decision(s) of the Committee to the Academic Board. This must be done in writing to the Registrar of the University within thirty (30) days of the decision. Upon receipt of any such complaint, the Registrar shall be compelled to submit the complaint for review by the next statutory meeting of the Academic Board of the University or no later than thirty (30) days after receipt of the complaint, whichever date is earlier.

If the complainant is a member of the Academic Board of the University, he/she or they would be required to remove themselves from any such meeting or part thereof convened for the purpose of hearing the complaint. The complainant shall have the right to appear before the meeting of the Academic Board convened to hear the appeal/complaint made by them. The decision of the Academic Board as an appeal authority shall be binding.

Project Duration

Research is expected to be completed within eighteen (18) months from the date of the award. However, in approved cases, additional time would be allowed depending on the nature of research.

Dissemination of Findings

As a condition of the grant, researchers must furnish UGSTSP a final project report in MS Word format in accordance with the timeline indicated in the Gantt chart. The results as well as the raw data of the research should be considered non-proprietary to the researcher and should be made available to the public. The final project report will be available on the University's Website. The plans for dissemination of research findings must be stated. This should include fora to publicize the results.

Researchers must include, or cause to be included, recognition of the UGSTSP Research grant in all publications of research results funded by the project.

Submission of Proposals

Proposals must be submitted in the format stated in the application form

Additional supporting materials such as curricula vitae of researchers and letter of agreement from co-researchers, stating how they will support the work, should be provided.

One printed copy of proposal should be deposited in the "Proposal submission box" located at the Office of the Vice Chancellor. A softcopy in pdf format should be emailed to ugstsp@uog.edu.gy with subject title as Research Proposal. The deadline for submission of applications is 15:00 h on Thursday, July 31, 2014.

Receipt of applications will be acknowledged. Late applications will not be considered

General Thematic Areas

The following themes that are relevant to Guyana's Low Carbon Development Strategy would be considered:

  • Inventory and assessment of resources and bio-diversity;
  • Economic implications of the utilization of resources;
  • Socio-economic impacts of policy options;
  • Modeling scenarios/ Satellite Imagery/Geographic Information Systems;
  • Institutional Framework such as policy revisions/development; and
  • Information and Communication Technology implications.

List of possible research areas

  • A UG case study of greenhouse gas accounting: towards a campus low carbon path
  • Alternative sea coast vegetation
  • An assessment of the UG carbon sequestration potential including campus greening
  • An economic impact study of the LCDS
  • Assessing mining and logging damage in forested areas using GIS and remote sensing technology
  • Assessment of economic potential of non­-timber forest products
  • Assessment of oils from kernels unutilized members of Guyana’s palmaceae for cosmeceutical potential
  • Biodiversity assessments including taxonomy
  • Bio-prospecting of indigenous flora for biologically active compounds
  • Botanical diversity; forest types, plant patterns and floral inventory
  • Classification and characterization of indigenous plants
  • Climate change impacts on Caribbean cultural diversity: Guyana socio-ecological case study
  • Coastal biodiversity – wetland species distribution of both flora and fauna
  • Comparative analysis of carbon stocks of rice and sugar cane plantations and evaluation of carbon sequestration potential: agro-ecological dimensions of climate mitigation
  • Region-specific vulnerability assessments in Guyana
  • Data collection on carbon abatement
  • Determination of biomass, carbon and caloric values of three mangrove species and related soil carbon dynamics for REDD+/LULUCF
  • Eco-physiology of flooding and drought tolerance of selected tree species of high bio-economic and endemic value in Guyana
  • Estimation of soil carbon pool in different forest types
  • Ethno-botanical and ethno-medicinal research on Guyana’s biodiversity
  • Experimental assessment of the development of biomaterials from a variety of plant sources including: rice and sugarcane – including bio-fertilizer mix with aquatic weeds for weed control and management as well as sustainable eco-agriculture (chemical fertilizers are GHG contributors)
  • Exploratory research on assessment of soil biodiversity in agro-ecosystems and on white and brown sands of wallaba and greenheart forests
  • Impacts of agriculture on biodiversity – including pesticides and fertilizer
  • Impacts of mining on biodiversity
  • Infrastructural environmental impacts on biodiversity
  • Architecture and urban environment in the context of climate change
  • Keystone species in different ecosystem types
  • Mangrove regeneration in situ
  • Medicinal plants of Guyana compendium
  • Perceptions of LCDS among Guyanese
  • Quantification of and mitigation strategies for vehicle CO2 emissions in Guyana
  • Re-estimation of above-ground carbon stored in the forest
  • Sea flow dynamics and impacts on coastal lands
  • Socio-cultural dimensions of LCDS
  • Study of alternative livelihoods in the context of LCDS
  • Study of flood tolerant crop types
  • Study of market for other environmental services (biodiversity)
  • Study to enhance the current estimation of standing forest
  • Textual analysis of media coverage of the LCDS
  • The LCD Strategy and sustainable economic development
  • The use of renewable energy in pursuit of Guyana’s Low Carbon Development Strategy
  • The use of duckweed as an alternative feed source for poultry & aquaculture
  • Impact of Tourism on ecosystem
  • Transfer and adaptation of technology for solar cooling of local buildings
  • Utilization of wood waste for generation of renewable energy
  • Economic valuation of forest ecosystem services

Recently Approved Research Grants

The following topics were awarded grants in the first call for proposals:

  • Estimating the carbon storage potential of the mangrove forests in Guyana;
  • An Investigation into the culture and propagation of edible mushrooms on different organize substrates in Guyana;
  • The impacts of artisanal and small-scale mining and their associated road infrastructure on biodiversity in the Mahdia mining district;
  • The effects of educational intervention about "Bush Medicine" on the knowledge, attitudes and practices of Pharmacists and Physicians;
  • The Effects of Momordica charantia (Corilla) on Secondary and Primary Cancer Cell Lines;
  • Antimicrobial activities of selected fruits and vegetables against selective pathogenic micro-organisms;
  • An experimental approach to Economic Behaviour, Culture and Institutions in Support of Low Carbon Development; and
  • The use of solar generated steam to power plant in the University’s thermodynamics laboratory.

Evaluation Criteria and Scoring Card

Criteria

Maximum Score

Definition

Clarity and Quality of Research Proposal 

30

Clarity of the issue/problem to be investigated (4 points)

Clear indication of the nature of data/information/output expected from the research  (4 points)

Appropriate literature review and/or relevant theory review have been included (8 points)

The methodology/experimental procedure proposed clearly explicate the research design (10 points)

Indicative list of references (4 points)

Relevance/ Alignment with LCDS

18

Relevance to LCDS  (10 points)

Indications of how the knowledge generated from this research may contribute to the execution of Guyana’s LCDS (8 points)

Potential Impact on Teaching and Learning at UG and Generally

10

Potential impact on teaching and learning at UG (4 points)

Dissemination of findings and knowledge continuation (3 points)

Positive effects on Students in terms of:

  1. Level of engagement
  2. Exposure to process (3 points)

Implementation Capacity

20

Capacity and experience of applicant to implement research (15 points)

Realistic projected timeline (Gantt Chart clearly identify the dates of milestones)  (5 points)

Competitive Preference Priorities

6

Extent of alignment to the research fund competitive preference priorities: 

  1. Involvement of external partners (NGOs, research institutes, foundations, private sector entities, etc.), cost-sharing arrangements; and
  2. Cross disciplinary/Faculty/ School involvement of staff and students

Ethical, Social and Environmental Assessment

6

External stakeholders and environmental safeguards have been adequately addressed as required by local and international regulations (4 points)
Ethical considerations have been adequately addressed (2 points)

Financial viability of research proposal

10

Relevant, realistic and detailed budget has been presented (10 points)

TOTAL SCORE

100

 

For further information contact

Vedyawattie Looknauth

Project Coordinator
University of Guyana Science and Technology Support Project
Herbarium, Faculty of Natural Sciences
Turkeyen Campus
Greater Georgetown
Tel #: 222 9103 or 674 4799
Email: vlooknauth@gmail.com

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