Hillman Emergent Innovation Program

Funding Agency:
Rita & Alex Hillman Foundation

The Hillman Emergent Innovation (HEI) Program provides $50,000, 12–18 month grants to accelerate the development of bold, nursing-driven interventions targeting the needs of groups and communities who have historically struggled against oppression, discrimination and indifference. These populations include the economically disadvantaged, racial and ethnic minorities, LGBTQ+ people, people experiencing homelessness, low-income rural populations, and other groups that encounter obstacles to accessing quality health care services. We seek creative, early stage (pre-evidence or untested) innovations that target health and health care problems in new ways.

The annual program—a complement to the Hillman Innovations in Care initiative—will award up to five, 12-18 month grants of $50,000 each.

Priority consideration will be given to proposals that include one or more of the following:

  • Engagement of patients, families, caregivers, and/or community organizations 
  • Inter-professional or multidisciplinary collaboration
  • Institutional and community partnerships
  • Provision of care in non-hospital settings
  • Measurable goals and outcomes


  • Duke Internal: Feb. 18, 2021
  • Sponsor Deadline: Mar. 2, 2021

Agency Website

Eligibility Requirements

We welcome applications from a broad range of institutions, care settings and practitioners (including postdocs, adjunct faculty and interdisciplinary faculty). We believe that transformative ideas are as likely to come from small community care settings as they are from major academic research centers.



Amount Description

The program will award up to five, 12-18 month grants of $50,000 each. Projects are expected to begin January 1, 2022.

Funding Type



Post Doctoral Fellows


Community Outreach and Engagement
Medical - Clinical Science
Social Sciences

Internal Nomination

SON applicants should send their CV and a one-page description of the project to Anita Stallings, anita.stallings@duke.edu by February 18.

Internal Deadline

February 18, 2021

External Deadline

March 2, 2021