Proposals for the 2021 cycle are due by 5:00pm EST on Monday, March 1, 2021. Please visit the FAS Research Administration Services website for additional information about this program.
The Star-Friedman Challenge for Promising Scientific Research (formerly known as the Star Family Challenge for Promising Scientific Research) provides seed funding to interdisciplinary high-risk, high-impact projects in the life, physical, and social sciences. This program welcomes applications for both single- and multi-investigator projects from a broad range of fields and perspectives, with proposals focusing on pandemics encouraged in the 2021 cycle. Early-stage projects that are unlikely to receive funding from traditional grant-making agencies are encouraged. Established in 2013 by a generous gift to Harvard University at the suggestion of James A. Star, AB (1983), the program expanded in the 2018-19 academic year through a gift from Joshua Friedman, AB (1976), MBA (1980), JD (1982) and Beth Friedman to invite proposal submissions from Harvard Medical School (HMS) and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health (HSPH) in addition to the Faculty of Arts and Sciences (FAS) and the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Science (SEAS). The Star-Friedman Challenge was previously supported by immediate-use funding; in 2020, the donors made generous new gifts to permanently endow the Challenge, ensuring that it can continue to support cutting-edge research at Harvard in perpetuity.
A list of previous award recipients may be viewed here.