Frequently Asked Questions

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For Applicants (9)

Frequently asked questions about the application process.

Researchers with advanced degrees (PhD, MD, or equivalent) who are affiliated with an established research organization can apply for funding. We welcome applications from researchers in the United States and elsewhere, as long as the proposed research targets HEI's main research interests. Please refer to our Strategic Plan and current funding opportunities for details.  

Email your application to HEI at and notify our science administrative assistant as incidated in the RFA instructions. File size limit is 20 MB.  

Letters of Intent are not mandatory but help us anticipate the volume of expected applications. Letters of Intent are not binding. If you sent a Letter of Intent but will not be applying, please let us know as soon as possible.

HEI generally does not provide feedback on Letters of Intent. However, HEI will contact the applicant if the intended topic of the application is outside the scope of the Request for Applications, or if the applicant or their institution does not meet qualifications for applying. 

Preliminary applications are a mechanism for HEI to preselect proposals when a large volume of proposals is expected. Investigators are asked to describe their research idea in a few pages and provide some information on feasibility of the research, experience of the research team, and budget. After review, if HEI is interested, a full application is requested. This process circumvents time spent by researchers in preparing full applications and by HEI for reviewing them in depth when they are not likely to succeed.  

No, full applications submitted through a preliminary application process are by invitation only.

HEI does not recommend sending more than one application per RFA. However, being part of another application as a collaborator would be fine, as is applying to more than one RFA at the same time.

When applications are received at HEI, they are sent to two or three external peer reviewers with appropriate expertise. The applications and peer reviews are then discussed by an RFA review panel (for major RFAs) or by the Research Committee (for smaller RFAs and the New Investigator Award). The RFA review panel recommends a top selection of applications to the Research Committee, which discusses the top tier applications and makes a final recommendation for funding to HEI's Board of Directors.  

HEI has strict procedures in place to guard against conflicts of interest. Peer reviewers of applications are selected to be independent and not have direct ties to an applicant (i.e. being at the same institution or having a close collaboration). In addition, they cannot have direct ties to other applicants who submit an application under the same RFA. 

For HEI Investigators (coming soon) (1)

Frequently asked questions about HEI study oversight and reporting requirements.

Funding Sources (coming soon) (1)

Frequently asked questions about HEI sponsors and how HEI manages its impartial research process.