The 2024 round of The MIDAS Propelling Original Data Science (PODS) program is in partnership with Microsoft and the University of Michigan Institute for Healthcare Policy and Innovation.

The Propelling Original Data Science (PODS) program aims to enable data science and Artificial Intelligence
(AI) research that addresses significant domain research questions in responsible and ethical ways, including:

  • Methodological development to enable better data, analytics and modeling;
  • Addressing a domain research question with a novel data science, analytics or AI approach in a significantly different way from current, “mainstream”, research;
  • Developing technical and policy solutions for responsible and ethical data science and AI;
  • Improving the U-M data science and AI research ecosystem, including, but not limited to:
    • Developing major datasets to enable the investigation of many new research questions;
    • Developing tools to improve the data / AI research lifecycle, such as for data acquisition, management, processing, and trustworthy computing and analytics.

Outputs of this type of projects should be made readily available to the U-M research community.

Who May Apply

Principal Investigators (PIs) and co-PIs should be U-M (Ann Arbor, Dearborn, Flint) researchers who are eligible to apply for federal grants, and should not have been a PI or co-PI of a MIDAS grant awarded on or after May 2022. An individual may participate as PI / co-PI on only one proposal. Co-investigators, consultants and other personnel are not limited by this restriction. All PIs and co-PIs should be MIDAS affiliate members. For Track 3, at least one of the PI’s should be an IHPI member.
We strongly encourage collaborative proposals with at least two PI / co-PIs from more than one discipline and preferably from more than one department.

Important Dates

11:59 pm, April 5, 2024: Letters of intent due
11:59 pm, May 10, 2024: Full proposals due
By June 27, 2024: Awards announced
By August 1, 2024: Projects start

How to Apply

Letters of intent should be submitted through this form. The letters will not be evaluated during full proposal review. The purpose of the letter is to confirm eligibility and the fit of proposed research ideas, for proposers to get early feedback to avoid common pitfalls, and for MIDAS to plan for reviewer assignments. The letter should be one .pdf file containing the following:

  1. The tentative title of the proposal.
  2.  The names and affiliations of the PI and co-PIs (co-PIs may change in the full proposal).
  3. An abstract (up to 300 words), including which track the proposal will be submitted to and the
    anticipated research impact (such as the three listed above in “Research Impact”, or others not listed).
  4. Up to six keywords.

The full proposal should be one .pdf file submitted through this form, containing the following components. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed.

  1. Project summary, up to three sentences in non-technical language. This will be made public (for example, on MIDAS website) if the project is awarded.
  2. Up to six keywords.
  3. An abstract (up to 300 words), including which track the proposal is submitted to and the anticipated research impact (such as the three listed above in “Research Impact”, or others not listed).
  4. Project description (up to 6 pages), with the font size of 10 or above. This should include the following components in any order or format, research questions / aims, background, significance and innovation, and methods.
  5. A transition plan (up to 1⁄2 page) that describes the strategy for follow-on funding and activities, such as external grants, continuing research plan, data products and/or commercialization.
  6. A Statement of Societal Impact (up to 1⁄2 page) that describes how this project will benefit the society, and, if any, potential negative impact that needs to be mitigated.
  7. References (no page limit).
  8. Biosketch in NSF or NIH format for all senior personnel. In addition, all U-M internal grant awards received since 2019 should be listed (this can be on an additional page).
  9. A detailed budget and budget justification. You may use our template or any other template of your choice. Be sure to include projected Budget Start and End dates. Awarded projects are expected to begin by August 1, 2024.
  10. If applicable, proof of cost-share (such as a letter from the department chair or a statement about the PI’s research account).
  11. If an IRB is required for the project, include a description of the status of the IRB application.

Before submission, applicants are welcome to discuss with MIDAS 1) how we can support their external proposal regardless of whether they receive our pilot funding; 2) if they would like MIDAS to help identify interdisciplinary collaborators; and 3) how to collaborate with MIDAS to build synergy and for dissemination of research outcomes.

For more information please visit the MIDAS website.