Competition objectives

The Global Brain Health Institute (GBHI), the Alzheimer’s Association, and Alzheimer’s Society aim to support emerging leaders in brain health, aging and dementia by funding small-scale pilot projects, activities and/or studies (hereafter referred to as “pilot project(s)”) to advance skills, knowledge, activities and general efforts to delay, prevent and/or mitigate the impact of dementia. The goal of these awards is to both support leadership development of the awardee and to advance the pilot projects that improve outcomes in brain health, such as cognition and/or function, and dementia.

Background

The Global Brain Health Institute (GBHI) trains a new generation of health leaders empowered to break down disciplinary boundaries and to find innovative ways to intervene on behalf of vulnerable people in their communities to prevent and limit the impact of dementia globally. GBHI brings together two leading institutions in brain science, the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) and Trinity College Dublin, the University of Dublin (TCD). As leading non-profit funders of Alzheimer’s and dementia related research, the Alzheimer’s Association and Alzheimer’s Society share the commitment to developing the next generation of brain health leaders, aligning with the vision and mission of GBHI. To further emphasize the commitment to these goals, GBHI, the Alzheimer’s Association, and the Alzheimer’s Society are partnering to offer the Global Brain Health Leaders awards.

The Global Brain Health Leaders awards will prioritize activities that demonstrate potential to lead to larger projects in the awardees’ home regions with an emphasis on lower and middle income communities. Priority will be given to pilot projects that utilize an evidence-based approach to identify, or direct change and/or improve care and outcomes among aging individuals with cognitive loss and dementia. Pilot projects that involve innovative or exploratory elements that are less well tested are also welcome as long as the rationale for the approach is clear.

Pilot projects selected for funding must contribute to the following long-term impact goals:

  • Perception: Create social change, reduce stigma, and inspire optimism and dignity for elders
  • Populations: Promote equity in prevention strategies and care models for vulnerable aging populations
  • Practice: Improve dementia diagnosis, treatment, and care for patients and families
  • Policy: Develop and refine brain health policies through evidence-based advocacy and outreach
  • Publication: Generate and distribute knowledge to advance the field of brain health and dementia prevention

Areas of emphasis

Areas of emphasis for this RFA include, but are not limited to:

  • Create culture or social change around important topics in dementia, aging, and brain health; for example, aim to increase awareness around risk factors for dementia or reduce stigma associated with brain aging.
  • Focus on improving policies around dementia, aging, and brain health; for example, this may include advocacy, economic policy, or ethics.
  • Leverage longitudinal studies of populations to answer questions about brain health; for example, about individuals living with dementia and/or their care partners.
  • Evaluate patient services and gaps in care; for example, this may involve surveys of providers or evaluation of health system data.
  • Focus on the diagnosis and/or prognosis of brain health disorders among vulnerable populations.
  • Intervention studies, including biological, social and behavioral interventions for the prevention or treatment of brain health disorders or associated challenges (e.g., those experienced by care partners) among vulnerable populations.
Awards will range between $5,000 and $25,000.

Award success will be evaluated based on successful completion of the goals/aims, as outlined in the original application. In addition, awardees will be expected to engage in the following activities, as examples, but not limited to:

 
  • Submission of funding proposal(s) to additional external funding agencies
  • Attendance and presentation at an international meeting such as the GBHI annual conference (travel support provided by GBHI; cost should not be included in the proposed budget), or another international recognized meeting and/or the Alzheimer’s Association’s International Conference (AAIC), AAIC Satellite Symposium (offered twice annually in different parts of the world) or other internationally recognized meeting (travel support may be included in the proposed budget per the allowable costs outlined below)
  • Acceptance of an abstract at AAIC or other appropriate international conference, and/or manuscript submission
  • Alzheimer’s Society host a national conference each May and have a network of careers and people affected by dementia that can support the delivery of research programs
  • Meaningful inclusion of a GBHI mentor and a home community (i.e. regional) mentor in the planning and the implementation of the proposed pilot project - Providing awardee an opportunity to engage other trainees as well as other Alzheimer’s Association, Alzheimer’s Society, and/or GBHI engagement opportunities to become involved and/or contribute to the pilot so as to enrich the GBHI educational experience
Eligibility

Atlantic Fellows at GBHI, including alumni, who have not previously received a Global Brain Health Leaders award.

Ineligibility: Applications from investigators currently funded by the Alzheimer’s Association who are delinquent in submitting required reports and other deliverables on active grants are ineligible. Investigators that have previous Alzheimer’s Association awards closed as ‘Incomplete’ are also not eligible to apply without exception. Atlantic Fellows at GBHI who have previously received an award under this program.

Timeline
January 10 RFA distributed
February 28 Letters of Intent (LOIs) due
April 1 Phase 1 submission due (draft for mentor review)
May 31 Phase 2 submission due (final for Joint Pilot Review Committee
June - July Review and decisions
August 15 Funding notice
October 1 Pilot implementation begins

Application review will be conducted by a joint review process managed by GBHI, the Alzheimer’s Association, and the Alzheimer’s Society.

Submission and review process

The Letter of Intent (LOI) is a required step in the application process. All LOIs must be completed and submitted online at proposalCentral http://proposalcentral.altum.com. First-time users must register and fill out a Professional Profile to begin the LOI process. No hard copies will be accepted.

The full application materials, including the application format, templates, and instructions, will be available online at proposalCentral after your LOI has been approved.

Applications will be evaluated based on the following criteria (all criteria should be addressed):

  • A well-designed and feasible proposed pilot project plan, including an evaluation plan and logic model; proposed plan is clearly linked to the long-term goals of this initiative as outlined above; proposed plan matches the projected budget in scope and breadth (30%)
  • Addresses feasibility for the pilot project to be continued, expanded and/or adapted in home country (20%)
  • Includes a well-developed mentorship plan from each mentor (i.e. a GBHI mentor and a home community mentor, see below) (20%)
  • The pilot outcomes, for example exhibitions, data, products and/or development of infrastructure, provide potential for further implementation and activities (10%)
  • Demonstrates the likelihood of receipt of additional external funding (10%)
  • Describes potential opportunities to engage global partners, including UCSF, Trinity College Dublin, the Alzheimer’s Society and the Alzheimer’s Association (10%)
The full application consists of the following (template and instructions located under the Work Plan and Other Attachments section):
 
  • Statement(s) of Mentorship – written by mentor(s) to outline plan for the individual’s continued training (1 or 2 pages). If applicant has more than one mentor, application should include statements of mentorship from each mentor. For example, one each from the home community (i.e. regional) mentor and the GBHI mentor.
  • Statement of Commitment – written by applicant to highlight their commitment to GBHI’s mission and the long-term impact goals stated above (1 or 2 pages)
  • Pilot Description and Plan – summary of the area of work the applicant is pursuing, description of the scope and importance of the problem being addressed, specific goals/aims or pilot project objectives, approach (strategy, methodology), a logic model and evaluation plan used to accomplish the goals/aims, timeline (3 to 5 pages)
  • Available Resources & Budget Justification – the projected budget and justification match and support the Pilot Plan in scope and breadth (1 to 2 pages)
  • Curriculum Vitae (CV) – a CV/bio for the applicant and the mentor(s) must be included, limited to four pages; mentor(s) should also include a table of other mentees (i.e. protégés, advisees, partners) with whom they have worked. 
Mentorship Plan: A mentorship plan should be clearly described. The role of the mentor(s) in the applicant’s proposed pilot project must be defined in the proposal. It is expected that the designated mentor(s) will be heavily involved in the preparation of the application proposal and serve as a co-participant (or investigator) in the proposed pilot project. Mentors should include a GBHI mentor as well as a home community (i.e. regional) mentor.
 

Mechanism of award

The mechanism of the award is an individual grant for the pilot project proposed in the application.

Budget

Budget summary and budget narratives are required and must be submitted with the application. Budget narratives are to provide budget line justification, including known details and reasoning associated with all salary related costs. If the application is to be awarded, a more detailed budget will be required and must be approved before the disbursement of funds.

Allowable costs

Allowable costs include (but are not limited to):

  • Salary for the grantee, technical assistance, and other staff (including administrative support related directly to the funded pilot project)
  • Travel (with justification in the narrative), not to exceed 20% of the total proposed budget
  • Computer equipment, hardware, or software (if used strictly for pilot project implementation and with justification in the narrative), not to exceed 20% of the total proposed budget; if proposed equipment expense will exceed this limit, awardee must have prior approval in writing.
  • Purchase and care of laboratory animals and/or small pieces of laboratory equipment and laboratory supplies - Indirect costs up to a maximum of 10% included in the total award not in addition to the award

Funded studies

FY18 Abstracts by Investigator:
The Alzheimer's Association (ALZ), the Global Brain Health Institute and the Alzheimer's Society UK collaboratively funded the following studies in FY18.

FY19 Abstracts by Investigator:
The Alzheimer's Association (ALZ), the Global Brain Health Institute and the Alzheimer's Society UK collaboratively funded the following studies in FY19.

For more information: Contact grantsapp@alz.org and pilots.projects@gbhi.org.