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RFA 20-1A Health Effects of Air Pollution

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RFA 20-1A

Request for Applications 20-1A provides a mechanism for investigators to apply for research on novel and important aspects of the health effects of air pollutants outside HEI's major RFAs. HEI is particularly interested in applications that address the following topics:

(a) Accountability or effectiveness of air quality regulations;
(b) Strengthening causal interpretation of evidence from existing cohorts; and
(c) Contributions of wildland and agricultural burning to air quality and health.

RFA 20-1A and instructions [updated May 18, 2020]

How to Apply


*** Please consult the Frequently Asked Questions before contacting HEI staff. Thank you! ***



Applicants should submit a 4-page Preliminary Application that provides the following information: title, scientific rationale, a brief description of the study aims, design and methods, statistical methods, and anticipated results. An estimated total budget and study duration should be provided, choosing from the 2 options provided.

In addition, brief biosketches (maximum 2 pages per person) of the principal investigator and key co-investigator(s) should be provided. Applicants can use HEI form F-8 or another format, as long as each biosketch is no longer than 2 pages. The application form and CVs should be turned into a combined PDF with appropriate bookmarks before submitting. 

Deadline for Preliminary Applications
Preliminary applications should be submitted by e‐mail in PDF format to (subject line: Your Name RFA 20-1A Preliminary application) no later than AUGUST 19, 2020, with a copy to Ms. Lissa McBurney ( HEI will acknowledge receipt of the application.

Preliminary Application Evaluation Process
Preliminary applications will be reviewed by the Research Committee and based on relevance of the proposed research to HEI’s mission as well as scientific merit of the preliminary application, a limited number will be invited for a full application. Applicants will be informed whether or not to submit a full application by early November. For questions contact HEI at 

FULL APPLICATION (by invitation only)

Investigators invited to submit a full application should use forms F‐1 to F‐12 and consult the Instructions for Completing the Application. Please note that the required font size is 11 point with 1‐inch margins. The application forms should be turned into a combined PDF with appropriate bookmarks before submitting. Applicants should familiarize themselves with HEI’s study oversight and review procedures, which are more involving that a typical NIH grant, see

Deadline for Full Applications                                                       

Invited Full Applications for RFA 20-1A should be submitted to (subject line: Your Name RFA 20-1A Full application) no later than JANUARY 6, 2021. The application should be in PDF format with a maximum file size of 20 MB. After submission, please notify Ms. Lissa McBurney ( of your submission; do not attach the PDF documents to this email. HEI will acknowledge receipt of the application. Applicants will be notified about the funding decision by mid March, 2021.

Preliminary Application Due Date: 
August 19, 2020
Full Application Due Date: 
January 6, 2021

Ongoing studies funded under this RFA

Yale University

This study is investigating risk of birth outcomes and perinatal mortality from fire-related PM2.5. The interdisciplinary team is developing fire modeling methods to estimate PM2.5 specifically from fires for Australia with improved fire emissions inventories and Lagrangian modeling.

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Emory University

University of Rochester Medical Center

In this HEI-funded project, the investigators will build on their previous accountability analyses in Atlanta, New York, and Los Angeles to characterize the health impacts of MV and EGU policy implementation.


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Georgia Institute of Technology

The objectives of this study are to: 1) Estimate the contributions of prescribed burning to both fine particulate matter (PM2.5) and ozone (O3) levels in the Southeastern US; 2) Quantify the effects of prescribed fire smoke on rates of emergency department (ED) visits; and 3) Assess how the observed health impacts vary across strata defined by age, sex, and socioeconomic markers.

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