GRANT PROGRAM 2017-12-01T10:57:02+00:00

Grant Program and Application

The Center for Security Research and Education (CSRE) at Penn State offers grants to support:

  1. Interdisciplinary, collaborative research efforts advancing our understanding of or addressing the broad range of security challenges confronting society;
  2. Educational activities designed to enhance understanding of the broad range of security challenges confronting society.


CSRE grant applications may be submitted by Penn State faculty and researchers.

Award Criteria

Applicants may seek funding to address one or more dimensions of the threats currently facing individuals, families, physical and electronic infrastructure, food and water supplies, public health, the natural environment, as well as the implication from society’s responses to these threats on economic well-being, civil liberties, and culture.  Preference will be given to proposals that:

  1. Originate in CSRE member units (College of Agricultural Sciences, Applied Research Laboratory, Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications, Institute for CyberScience, Penn State Institutes for Energy and the Environment, Penn State Harrisburg, College of Information Sciences and Technology, Penn State Law and the School of International Affairs, College of the Liberal Arts, and the Social Science Research Institute);
  2. Clearly reflect the interdisciplinary nature of contemporary security challenges by incorporating expertise from multiple, diverse disciplines and involve collaboration among multiple units;
  3. Describe the objectives to be achieved, including clear data collection and analysis plans where applicable;
  4. Include cost-sharing from one or more departments, Colleges, or other Institutes;

    Note: Deans and directors of CSRE member units may be willing to provide additional funding to encourage applications for CSRE grants.  Interested faculty should inquire within their college or relevant CSRE-member institute.

  5. If the applicant has received CSRE funding before, provide evidence of positive outcomes from the earlier award (e.g., publication, successful conference, successful travel, application to external award agency);
  6. For research grants in particular, demonstrate how the research will:
    1. Lead to additional, external funding;
    2. Involve junior faculty;
    3. Involve students.
  7. For public or internal educational programs, how the program will promote awareness of security issues or enhance the curricular experience of Penn State students.

Allowable Expenses

Applicants may seek funding for academic research or other interdisciplinary, collaborative, educational programs, within or outside Penn State.  Allowable expenses may include:

  1. Travel for research;
  2. Travel to present research findings, including testimony to government or international agency groups;
  3. Purchase of research materials including books (note: purchases of IT equipment is not permitted);
  4. Salary for undergraduate or graduate research assistants;
  5. Funds to support operating expenses for a public event.

Selection Committee

Applications will be evaluated by an interdisciplinary committee of three or more CSRE representatives chaired by the CSRE director.  The director may approve Level 1 Grants as noted below.  The committee will make every effort to respond quickly, consistent with the applicant’s stated needs.

Award Amounts

CSRE will offer two types of grants:

  1. Level 1 Grants, which may be awarded by the CSRE director in amounts not to exceed $1,000.
  2. Level 2 Grants, which may be awarded by the selection committee in amounts not to exceed $15,000.

The size of the award will be determined by the scope of the proposed activities and budget, and by scope of the proposing team (collaborative awards involving participants from multiple Colleges or Institutes are likely to receive larger awards than if participants are in the same department, or are single PIs).  Expenditures of awards can begin immediately and awarded funds must be used within one year of the date of the initial award.


Investigators are expected to provide an annual project status update and a brief (one page) final report upon completing the project. These materials allow us to track and report outcomes as well as monitor the success of the grant program.  If you need to make changes to the project team, description, design, or budget during the course of your projects, please send a request to with the specific details of these changes.


Applicants must submit a completed grant application form and required additional information described therein to