President's Research Excellence Program

The program will provide up to $2.5 million in seed support for cross- and interdisciplinary research during the 2023-24 academic year

Ohio State aims to grow its research and innovation enterprise and increase its research eminence among the nation’s and the world’s research universities by attracting more externally sponsored research funding, enabling curiosity-driven research and discoveries, and addressing large, complex societal challenges. 

type treatment art for pre program

Towards these goals, the President’s Research Excellence (PRE) program, established in 2021 by the Enterprise for Research, Innovation and Knowledge, provides seed support for cross- and interdisciplinary research that have the potential to attract external funding. This year the university will award up to $2.5 million in PRE grants. 

Specifically, the PRE program supports:

  • Accelerator proposals are for small teams formed to pursue curiosity-driven, novel, high-risk and high-reward research. The grants may be up to $50,000. 
  • Catalyst proposals are for large cross- and interdisciplinary teams to pursue large-scale, high-impact research that addresses emerging or existing challenges of national and international societal importance, generates long-term, sustained, and significant impact, and positions Ohio State as the leader in this area. These grants may be up to $200,000. 


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A lead PI for this program must be a faculty member, either tenure/tenure track or research, or a clinical-track faculty member who is engaged in research. PI status at Ohio State is required for all lead PIs. Co-PIs can be faculty, research staff or post-docs from intellectually distinct disciplines. Proposing teams must include a minimum of three Ohio State researchers from distinctively different interdisciplinary areas.    

Please note: researchers may only be named as PI or Co-PI on a single PRE project proposal per Accelerator or Catalyst competition. If any researcher is named as PI or Co-PI on more than one proposal in the same competition (Accelerator or Catalyst), only the first proposal submitted, as indicated by the time and date stamp from the submission site, will be reviewed and any proposal submitted with a duplicate investigator named after that will be disqualified. Any PI or Co-PI named on an active, awarded PRE project (Accelerator or Catalyst) cannot be named as such on another PRE proposal (Accelerator or Catalyst) until the awarded PRE project period ends. 

See the program RFPs below for full eligibility requirements, restrictions and deadlines.

Previous PRE Award Cycles

Ohio State has invested approximately $4.6 million in 56 teams of Ohio State investigators through the PRE program since its inception. Learn more about the awardees and projects below.

View the 2023 Catalyst Grants   View the 2022 Catalyst Grants   View the 2021 Catalyst Grants

View the 2023 Accelerator Grants   View the 2022 Accelerator Grants   View the 2021 Accelerator Grants 


Catalyst Timeline

The Catalyst timeline includes submission of concept papers, followed by full proposals for invited applicants.

  • September 26, 2023 – Call for Catalyst concept papers open
  • January 5, 2024 – Catalyst concept papers due at 5 p.m. EST
  • March 8, 2024 – Catalyst invited full proposals due at 5 p.m. EST
  • March 29, 2024 – Catalyst awards announced

The project period for awarded Catalyst projects is from May 1, 2024 - October 31, 2025.

Catalyst Grant RFP 

Catalyst Grant Application Portal

Accelerator Timeline

The Accelerator proposal timeline consists of one proposal submission that includes a two-page narrative. There are two deadlines for Accelerator application deadlines during the 2023-24 academic year.  

  • September 26, 2023 – Call for Accelerator proposals open
  • October 27, 2023 – Accelerator Fall 2023 proposals due at 5 p.m. EST
  • December 1, 2023 – Accelerator Fall 2023 awards announced
  • May 3, 2024 – Accelerator Spring 2024 proposals due at 5 p.m. EST
  • June 7, 2024 – Accelerator Spring 2024 awards announced

The project period for Fall 2023 Accelerator awards is from January 1, 2024 – December 31, 2024. 

The project period for Spring 2024 Accelerator awards is from July 1, 2024 - June 30, 2025.

Accelerator Grant RFP 

Accelerator Fall 2023 Grant Application Portal

Have questions or want to know more? 

Vice President for Knowledge Enterprise Dorota Grejner-Brzezinska held an informational briefing via Zoom on Monday, Nov. 7 on the 2023 PRE program, highlighting: the 2023 competition calendar; the goals and requirements of the program; examples of the type of projects and teams the program intends to support; and information about modifications made for the 2023 competition. 

Watch the briefing     View the PRE FAQs