Core Funding

Funding Agency:
North Carolina Sea Grant

North Carolina Sea Grant’s core research projects include diverse coastal topics that typically are funded by a combination of both federal and state dollars with an emphasis on applied research initiatives. Core funding operates on a two-year cycle.

Researchers must show how their one- or two-year studies meet the identified needs of North Carolina and how that work will ultimately benefit our coast, often having an impact on a regional, national or international level. These projects require matching funds identified by the researcher and their home university.

NC Sea Grant supports a multidisciplinary, integrated program of applied research, outreach, and education that addresses coastal and marine issues important to the state of North Carolina. NC Sea Grant strives to fund applied research within four focus areas: Healthy Coastal Ecosystems; Resilient Communities and Economies; Sustainable Fisheries and Aquaculture; and Environmental Literacy and Workforce Development.

Proposed work must clearly align with one or more of these focus areas, be based within North Carolina, and target issues important to North Carolina’s coastal region. Please refer to the NC Sea Grant Strategic Plan for 2018–2023 ( to help you ensure your project ideas align with these focus areas.

Deadline for Pre-proposals: Jan. 11, 2021

Agency Website

Eligibility Requirements

Investigators may submit only one preproposal as Principal Investigator (PI), but may be listed as a Co-PI on as many preproposals as they desire. PIs must be affiliated with an academic institution of higher education in North Carolina. Co-PIs and project collaborators can have any affiliation and can be based either within or outside North Carolina. Postdoctoral researchers and federal employees are not eligible to apply as PIs, but can be project participants.



Amount Description

NC Sea Grant expects to fund 10 two-year research projects in this Biennial Competitive Research Funding Cycle. The maximum federal request per project is $120,000 over the two-year project period, and must be split evenly at $60,000 per year. Matching dollars (nonfederal) are required for this program at a 2:1 ratio ($2 federal to $1 nonfederal). Indirect charges are also required. All funding is reliant upon NC Sea Grant receiving federal funds that currently have not yet been appropriated. As such, no funding can be guaranteed. All funding levels, including the maximum amount per project and the number of projects, are subject to change. Applicants may be asked to revise scopes of work, start date, and budgets so that their projects align with available funding levels.

Funding Type





Community Outreach and Engagement
Engineering and Physical Sciences
Environmental & Life Sciences
Social Sciences

External Deadline

January 11, 2021