Limited Submission Process


Limited Submission (LS) funding opportunity announcements are distributed in a targeted fashion to faculty via the Research Development email address: The announcements provide a brief description of the opportunity, a link to the funding agency's site, and internal and external deadlines. Open Opportunities for which an institutional nominee has not been authorized are also posted on this website.

We make every effort to identify all LS opportunities and notify faculty. If a faculty member or research administrator identifies a LS opportunity that is not listed in Open Opportunities, it is her/his responsibility to contact us.

Letters of Intent

Faculty interested in applying for a limited submission funding opportunity are required to submit an internal letter of intent (LOI). The form should be submitted via NITROCompetitions. If the number of LOIs submitted is less than what is allowed by the sponsor, applicants are authorized as institutional nominees to submit a proposal to the sponsor.

Internal Competition

If the number of LOIs exceeds the sponsor's limitation, an internal competition is held. Typically, applicants that submit an LOI are invited to submit an internal proposal. Faculty should contact Nicole Moore, Director of Research Development, if they submitted an LOI and did not receive an invitation to submit an internal proposal (or other notification) shortly following the LOI deadline. Instructions for submitting an internal proposal are included in the invitation to submit email.


The Limited Submission Advisory Committee  (LSAC) is composed of senior faculty from Northwestern schools and is charged with identifying nationally competitive candidate(s). The LSAC meet in person to discuss the internal proposals, and the meeting is video-conferenced between Evanston and Chicago. As appropriate, ad hoc reviewers, including faculty who are past awardees or have experience with the sponsor’s selection process, are invited to join the meeting. In addition, ex-officios from the Foundation Relations or Corporate Engagement guide the panel by providing information about the sponsor’s mission, priorities, and the review process.  Following the panel discussion, the LSAC votes for the recommended candidate(s).

The Vice President for Research (VPR) reviews the committee’s discussion and recommendations and nominates the institutional nominee(s).


Once the VPR approves the nominee(s), the applicant is notified and authorized. The applicant's department chair, Associate Dean for Research, and Sponsored Research Grants Officer are also notified. Investigators not selected are notified as well. All candidates receive reviewer feedback from the LSAC in their notification.

Applicant Responsibilities

Applicants must adhere to all posted deadlines and may not submit an application in response to a LS funding opportunity without institutional authorization. Nominees are expected to submit a timely application, barring serious, extenuating circumstances.

Should the nominee wish to decline a nomination, she/he is required to notify Nicole Moore as soon as possible. Not doing so may preclude a faculty member from applying to LS competitions in the future.


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