Funding & Grants

NCI’s Global Oncology Research Leadership Training Award

Submission Deadline

Tuesday, May 30 2023


Monday, March 06 2023


The National Cancer Institute intents to fund research institutions based in LMICs to develop and implement contextualized educational activities (courses and mentoring) to cultivate professional skills integral to fostering successful research careers in LMICs. NCI is currently soliciting Letters of Intent from eligible LMIC institutions/organizations. A small number of full proposals will be invited from submissions received in response to this Call. Grant amounts are expected to be up to $200,000 in total costs to support projects over a two-year period. Successful Letters of Intent will offer a clear vision to bolster professional competencies of investigators in LMICs so that they are well equipped to initiate and lead research in their local institutions. 

Applications due by May 30, 2023. Link to apply here.

An information session was held on March 17th at 9:00 – 10:30 am ET. Presentation and Q&A from the session will be posted here by March 27, 2023.

Another information session may be held in late April. Date and time TBD.

Please refer to the attachment Call for Letters of Intent: NCI’s Global Oncology Research Leadership Training Award under Application Package at the bottom of this page for further information.

National Cancer Institute’s Center for Global Health program administered through CRDF Global


The NCI Global Oncology Research Leadership Training Award will be granted to research institutions based in LMICs to develop and implement contextualized educational activities (courses and mentoring) to cultivate professional skills integral to fostering successful research careers in LMICs. The overall goal of this initiative is to bolster professional competencies of investigators in LMICs so that they are well equipped to initiate and lead research in their local institutions. Professional skills are intended to complement scholars’ technical research skills, and therefore scholars who have technical research foundation will benefit most from this initiative. To accomplish the overarching stated goal, this award will support creative and innovative educational activities that comprise:

Courses for professional skill development: 

This initiative is intended to cultivate a broad range of professional skills needed to prime individuals for success in cancer research. Therefore, the educational program will comprise several courses to develop varied professional competencies. The specific areas of emphasis will be determined and tailored to meet the unique needs of the program scholars. Applicants should describe in detail the courses and training resources focused on developing competencies in various areas including, but not limited to:

    • Grantsmanship and technical expertise in grant and scientific writing to compete successfully for research funding
    • Technical and non-technical writing and communication to increase presence in scientific literature and disseminate research findings beyond scientific audiences, including to policymakers and community
    • Strategies to establish and maintain effectual scientific collaborations and stakeholder partnerships, including teamwork, networking, mediation/negotiation
    • Strategies for effective research leadership including time management, career planning, mentoring the next generation of investigators
    • Strategies of effective policy engagement, community engagement to impact policy change to improve health outcomes
    • Responsible conduct of research including ethics, equity, diversity

Mentoring and experiential learning: 

The education programs will include mentored and practical learning experiences to afford scholars the opportunity to not only ‘learn by doing’ under the mentorship/couching of experienced researchers, but also to practice their newly acquired skills in their local contexts/settings. These opportunities will include, but are not limited to:

    • Simulation of grant writing, application and review processes that provide an in-depth, hands-on experience of the grant process.
    • Practical coaching to assist and enhance scholars’ skills to successfully identify, prepare, submit, and obtain grants and increase their awareness of career development and professional enhancement opportunities.
    • Practical scientific writing and presentation of scientific information to varied audiences including at academic conferences, local ministries or other policy makers/funders, and community.
    • Practical mentor-mentee communication strategies to encourage the establishment and maintenance of strong mentoring relationships (i.e., aligning expectations, fostering independence, assessing needs, active listening, and the provision of constructive feedback).

The educational program will employ context-appropriate training models embracing new educational models including adaptive and flexible learning designs that allow trainees to learn at their own pace, and at times appropriate for their local contexts. The educational programs will utilize both virtual and in-person learning platforms and incorporate strategies to increase engagement and participation such as recording or providing multiple offerings of the sessions.

This funding opportunity offers two years of funding to support the institutions to build strong and sustainable educational programs. The proposed educational programs may complement, but not duplicate, ongoing training programs at the applicant institution. In developing the educational program, the institutions may consider a progressive and phased implementation approach.  In the first phase (year 1), institutions are expected to conduct a thorough needs assessment to map professional skill gaps at both the local and regional levels, and then design, pilot, and adapt an appropriate and responsive educational program. In the second phase (year 2), institutions are expected to fully implement the 1-year educational program.  When fully developed, the educational program will be delivered over the course of one year, and trainees will be evaluated and issued professional certificates upon the successful completion of the program.  These educational programs are intended to be open to scholars from within and outside of the applicant institution, including regional institutions.

Although not required, applicant LMIC institutions are encouraged to establish collaborative partnerships with other LMICs and/or US institutions to ensure availability of diverse expertise, experiences, and adequate resources to sustainably continue the educational programs beyond the award period. The education programs may continue either as standalone programs or be integrated into the broader research training curricula at the institution. It is intended that the educational tools and resources be made widely available to future scholars.



    • Applicant institution will be a research-intensive institution based in eligible LMICs.
    • Applicant institution must demonstrate capacity and experience in leading and conducting cancer research.
    • Applicant institution must demonstrate capacity and provide assurances that all participating scholars will receive adequate mentoring and experiential learning as they participate in the educational program, either independently or through collaboration with partner LMIC and/or US institutions as appropriate.

Program Director(s)/Principal Investigator(s) (PD(s)/PI(s):

    • Any individual(s) with the skills, knowledge, and resources necessary to provide program leadership is invited to work with his/her institution to develop an application for support
    • PD(s)/PI(s) from the applicant LMIC institution is the primary contact.


    • Scholars will be research or clinician scientists who are citizens or permanent residents of eligible LMICs and, at the time of award, may not be citizens or non-citizen nationals of any high-income country (HIC)
    • Scholars must have completed a doctoral degree or its equivalent [such as a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) Doctor of Medicine (M.D.). In many LMICs, Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery (MB ChB, MB BS, BM MCh, MMed etc.) are considered the highest degree of study and equivalent to a doctoral degree.
    • Scholars in the early stages of establishing their independent research careers, particularly those who hold academic junior faculty positions or research scientist appointments at their local institutions (including but not limited to instructors, lecturers, assistant professors), are preferred. Strong justification must be provided
    • Preference should be given to scholars who are involved in ongoing cancer research work in their home institution and who show potential for continued advancement in their cancer research careers.

Application Materials

Letters of Inquiry must include:

    • The Principal Investigator’s title and contact information and the names, affiliations, and titles of other key members of the project, if any 
    • A narrative of your institution’s vision to develop and implement contextualized educational activities to cultivate professional skills integral to fostering successful research careers in LMICs. 
    • A high-level tabular budget and justification up to $200k (inclusive of up to 8% overhead). 
    • A brief list of collaborators. 

Letters of Inquiry must:

    • Be no more than 5 pages in total, including all components above
    • Be in an 11-point font
    • Have 1-inch margins
    • Include page numbers

Submission Instructions

Submissions are due no later than May 30, 2023

Materials must be integrated into a single PDF document and uploaded via Formstack. Link to apply here.

We expect to invite full proposals from among the LOI submissions by July 15, 2023, with full proposal drafts due August 30, 2023. The full proposals invited will be further reviewed by a set of subject matter experts. Final award decisions for invited proposals are expected in October 2023.

Questions about the Call for LOIs can be sent to Kay Kornek at with James Alaro from NCI-CGH copied,

Another information session late may be held in late April. Date and time TBD.