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R13/U13 Guidelines

The NINDS recognizes the value of supporting scientific meetings that are relevant to its scientific mission and to the public health.  For example, R13 or U13 conference grants can be a critical means of promoting important and sometimes underdeveloped areas of research within the interests and priorities of the NINDS (please see: for general program areas supported by the NINDS).  A conference grant application is required to include a letter from the NINDS Referral Office (contact information listed below) documenting the willingness of NINDS to accept the application.  Applicants should contact the NINDS at least 6-8 weeks before the deadline for submitting the full-length application, and will be asked to provide a limited amount of standardized information about the conference to assist NINDS staff in deciding whether to accept the application.  Applications should be submitted at least 6 months before the proposed conference is scheduled to be held.  

R13 Conference Grant.  Awards are typically in the range of $10,000 to $25,000 and are intended to provide partial support for the conference.  Some appropriate uses of NINDS R13 funding include supporting the dissemination of the proceedings, web-casting or web-archiving of the meeting, supporting students, minority scientists, persons with disabilities or more junior investigators to attend or participate in the meeting, and other limited activities specific to the interests of the NINDS or NIH.  NINDS generally only accepts R13 applications for a single year of support. However, in exceptional circumstances, NINDS may support multi-year applications that have a demonstrated history of yearly funding success and that meet NINDS mission objectives.  An additional circumstance might be a series of interrelated meetings, each of which is an essential part of achieving a defined overall goal.  In such a case, the applicant should be able to describe each of the meetings in the series in detail in the original grant application.  Applicants should contact program staff in advance if they wish to apply for larger amounts of funding and/or multi-year support.

The NIH R13 FOA requires that applicants submit an “Appropriate Representation Plan” to demonstrate that there is compliance with NIH grants policy on inclusion of Women, Minorities and Persons with Disabilities at all NIH-supported conferencesNINDS will carefully evaluate this plan for all applications.  All applicants must describe clearly and specifically the involvement of women, minorities, and persons with disabilities in the planning and implementation of, and participation in, the proposed conference.  Additional information, specific details and resources for R13 applicants on effective ways to design an appropriate conference plan for inclusion are provided in the NINDS Guidance for R13 Submissions: Addressing "Appropriate Representation".

.In some cases, several NIH Institutes may have an interest in supporting or co-funding the conference, particularly if the topic spans broad or more basic areas of neuroscience.  Before submitting the application, the applicant is encouraged to contact other NIH Institutes for their interest in supporting the conference. 

U13 Cooperative Conference Grant.  The difference between the R13 and U13 mechanisms is that in the case of the U13, NINDS Program staff will be substantially involved in the planning and/or conduct of the meeting (exceeding the traditional role of the staff member as Program Administrator), assisting the Principal Investigator according to specific Terms and Conditions of the award.  Examples of NINDS Program staff involvement after award include, but are not limited to, development of an agenda, selection of speakers, organization of the conference or workshop, and/or post-meeting publications.  As with the R13 mechanism, the NINDS provides partial support for U13 grants with perhaps additional funds for NINDS-initiated topics/speakers.

NIH Information: Guidelines for Support of Scientific Meetings by NIH (

Link to PAs and RFAs:



Chief, Scientific Review Branch

Telephone: (301) 496-9223, Fax (301) 402-0182


January 2006

Last Modified January 8, 2016