LDI Policy Accelerator Program

Incentivizing LDI experts to produce policy-relevant content


One of the challenges in applying evidence to policy is the gap between the timing of emerging policy issues and the life cycle of a research project. To bridge this gap, LDI will make LDI Policy Accelerator Grants available to qualifying researchers. The goal of this new form of small grant is to incentivize LDI experts to produce policy-relevant content—a descriptive data brief, an opinion piece, a perspective or viewpoint, prominent blog post, or testimony—in response to an issue of immediate concern to policymakers.

We will give a $5,000 award for each successful proposal. No budget is necessary, and all submissions are online.

Through this program, a partnership between our Health Policy team and each investigator, we will encourage Senior Fellows to lay claim to an area of fruitful research that is policy relevant by commenting, within three months of the award, on the perspectives relevant to the emerging issue. Early engagement may lead to downstream research projects and greater influence as a voice in a critical policy area. Our policy team will help edit and place your finished piece in a suitable venue.

We will evaluate each 500-700 word proposal on its immediate policy relevance, its fit with the goals of the grant program, and its likelihood of having an impact—either directly, through engagement with policymakers, or indirectly, through high-profile publication or mention in the lay press or medical literature. We are particularly interested in proposals that take advantage of a timely policy window, a need or opportunity for public visibility, or where research and expertise can be applied to an ongoing decison process.

Preference will be given to LDI Senior Fellows who are first-time commentators and/or new researchers as these grants are meant to develop new capacity. We will also take into consideration the immediate policy relevance of the issue. LDI Associate Fellows may also apply but must list a Senior Fellow mentor to do so.

Each proposal should discuss the policy issue, point to an opportunity to have an impact on policy (policy window), intended audience (policy target), and explain the nature and format of the proposed end-product. Each proposal should connect the policy issue to one of LDI’s four themes: insurance reform, health care delivery, healthy behaviors, or vulnerable populations.

All projects must be completed within three months of the award, and payment of the grant will be made upon submission of the agreed product(s). If there are necessary expenses, such as for travel or data, they can be covered as they are incurred.

Submit a proposal

The present round of funding has ended. To be notified about the next round of funding, please contact Janet Weiner at weinerja@pennmedicine.upenn.edu or 215-573-9374.