Small Projects Scorecard
Track record of applicantPublications, students10%
Quality of proposalBackground with a problem statement / conceptual framework
Aim and objectives clearly stated and do they align with the problem statement, with the objectives of the programme, and with a specified national strategy?
Anticipated outputs explicitly stated and quantified?
FeasibilityDetailed work plan with reasonable time frames
Timeframes in line with the FBIP funding period (1 year + 6 months for data delivery)?
Roles and contributions of all participants specified?
Budget reasonable?
Sufficient detail to allow assessment ?
Ethical issues including data sharing and collecting permits.
40% (30 work plan and 10 budget)
  • Outputs should be quantified – how many of each output, even if its an estimate.
  • We (do) need to think about the return on investment – how big is the contribution to the FBIP’s targets?
  • Small projects – grants are meant to be strategic interventions – so they should fit into ‘something bigger’ rather than just being independent projects.
  • Outcome or impact: what will change because the project has been done? How important is this change?
  • Is there a real connection between the stated impact and the project?

Outputs and Outcomes/Impacts (pics)


  • What will be produced by this study?
  • A database? Of what?
    • How many records are anticipated?
  • Pinned specimens/herbarium specimens?
    • About how many?
  • Sequence data – what type?
    • For how many species?
    • How many specimens?
    • Do I know what the IBOL standard is for my group?
    • What is required to submit data to BOLD or GBIF?
  • A postgraduate degree?
  • How many papers?


  • What will change because I have done this project?
  • Who will be able to use the outputs and for what purpose?
  • Links back to the Aim / context / problem that is being solved.

(Put yourself in the position of the funder) – would they consider what you are producing is good value for money or a good return on the investment?

In some cases, there may not be very many FBIP-aligned outputs, but the impact will be very high.

In other cases the impact may not be very high in the immediate future, but the number of outputs is very high.

Both these scenarios would mean that the project has some value to the funder.

The best scenario of course is lots of outputs and high impact

Outputs & ImpactsProposed outputs in line with the FBIP (i.e. taxonomic data, occurrence/population data, species information, DNA barcodes) and relevant for global change or the bio-economy
Are stated impacts realistic?
Users of the knowledge/information identified?
Is an appropriate national strategy identified, and is the contribution to this specified and accurate?
Consideration given to the format in which the knowledge/information will need to be made accessible (even if this is not done by the project)?
To what extent will the project contribute to the FBIP deliverables?

Notes on scoring of proposals for Small Grants

  • If the Feasibility scores less than 3, the proposal is considered to be unfundable.
  • It would score less than 3 if it was evident that there was no real plan (yet) for how the project would be done…
    • or if the scale of the project seems too big to be completed within the time frames of the FBIP
    • or if the capacity available does not match the scale or the scope of the project
    • or if the proposed activities in the work plan do not match the objectives.
  • If the Outputs & Impacts scores less than 3 then the proposal is considered unfundable.
  • A proposal would score less than 3 for Outputs and Impacts if there would be very few outputs produced in line with the FBIP targets
    • or if the impact would be limited to academic interest only.
    • It must be very clear who would use the outputs from the project…
    • and how they would use them to solve a particular problem/challenge.
    • it is not necessary for the researcher to actually do the problem-solving themselves, but just how the outputs will be accessed and applied by the targeted user/s must be explained.

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