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Identifying Potential Funders

In the fund-raising world, the process of identifying external funders for particular projects is called “prospecting.” So sharpen your pickaxe. It’s time to search for gold.

Assistance with Prospecting

As the Director of Faculty Research Support, I am always available to identify potential funding sources for individual faculty.  To facilitate this process, please send me:

  • A brief statement of your research interests, and 5 to 10 key words associated with your research area.
  • A brief description of your funding needs: What activities do you need to accomplish to make progress in your research? Do you need to travel to archives? Do you need to purchase equipment? Are you looking for summer salary to support the work or for a fellowship to support a yearlong sabbatical?

Because many funders have only one or two deadlines each year and they usually take several months to make determinations on awards, it is wise to identify potential funding sources roughly 18 months before you will need the funding. Therefore, please contact me as early in the process as possible.

Prospecting Independently

As of November 1st, 2013, the Colorado College community now has access the premier grants database, “Pivot.” This product incorporates the more well-known grants database, “COS,” but it also includes access to information on other researchers worldwide through the “COS Scholar Universe.” Pivot integrates (and “pivots between”) both of these services.

You can immediately begin to search Pivot from any CC computer, however if you wish to save a funding record or funding search, you will want to create a Pivot account. From Pivot's homepage, click the “Sign up” option in the upper right of the screen.  You will gain access to Pivot by indicating that you are affiliated with CC.  You will need to register with an institutional email address. (Note: please use all lowercase letters.)

When you have a few minutes, please go to the “Profiles” tab to claim your profile.  Once you claim your profile and update the information in the system, the system’s ability (and my ability) to assist you with identifying good funding matches improves dramatically.

A list of upcoming training webinars is available here:

  • Refworks
  • Then click on “Pivot for Researchers, Faculty and Staff”

If you wish to learn more, a summary of Pivot is provided here.

From Prospecting to Grant Writing

Whether we have two good funding prospects or several, our ultimate goal is to sit down several months before the proposal deadlines in order to discuss the funders’ requirements – as well as your funding needs – in detail. By giving yourself plenty of time for this process, you will both improve your funding options and prepare better proposals – thereby becoming more likely to meet with success.  I look forward to working with you in this process.