Research Studios

The GP IDeA-CTR is pleased to offer Research Studios for early career investigators to help refine their research with one of the following formats:

  • (1) review of an aims page with brief proposed methods and research team members
  • (2) grant review before submission (simulated mock NIH review)
  • (3) brainstorming session for recently completed projects or individuals who are attempting to transition to external funding but have questions

The Research Studio program was developed by Vanderbilt University, and has been implemented at various institutions across the country. The GP IDeA-CTR has adapted and enhanced the program to bring together a team of multidisciplinary scientists to help investigators with one of the three needs identified above. In general, our goals are intended to enhance research quality, improve funding success, foster networking, and facilitate development of multi-disciplinary teams.

If you would like to participate in a studio, we will help assemble a multidisciplinary team (approximately 4-6 experts) and set up one, 60 minute session. Depending on your request (aims page review, mock review or brainstorming) you will be asked to provide written information for review (see below). Please note that we can set up remote meetings through video conferencing, if necessary.


The goal of the Research Studios is to support the professional development of faculty who are assistant or associate professors; however, are available to all faculty including professors. With suggestions from the trainee, relevant experts are identified to provide feedback on strengths, weaknesses, challenges and opportunities of the trainee’s research. Such consultation will not only advance the research and scholarship agendas of these faculty, it will also help expand their professional networks. The studios provide a chance to bring a more senior scholar or scholars from local and outside universities to participate in this opportunity. A key objective of the studio is to offer this support at a critical time in the faculty member’s career.

Investigator Feedback

Participating in the research studio provided me with critical input into my research project, which proved very helpful to improve my research project proposal. I was also able to contact collaborators to enhance the multidisciplinary nature of my project, all thanks to the research studio. It helped me in aligning the methods of my project with the proposed objectives.

– Anupam Kotwal, MBBS

I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to participate in a GP-IDeA CTR Research Studio prior to submitting my first R01 in June 2021. During the studio, I received thoughtful feedback from world-renowned researchers and clinicians.  The review panel provided suggestions that strengthened my proposal, and tips and tricks that will help me with future grant submissions.  Each panel member was committed to seeing my application be successful.  After the studio, panel members provided written feedback and clarification to improve my application.  As an early career researcher, I am delighted to know that UNMC has this incredible resource for new investigators and would request another session in the future.

– Windy Alonso, PhD

The research studio process helped me to revise my response to reviewers on an NIH UH3 BRAIN Initiative grant, which was subsequently awarded, and became the first BRAIN initiative funding on campus.

– Aviva Abosch, MD, PhD

The research studio was a great opportunity to present an upcoming grant submission to a multidisciplinary group and receive constructive feedback. With the feedback from the research studio, I was able to revise the grant before submission and it was subsequently selected for funding.

– Bryant England, MD


  • Faculty from participating institutions, including professors, assistant professors, associate professors, and instructors.
  • Other applications will be considered on a case-by-case basis.


  1.  Submit a research studio request via the website.
  2.  You will be contacted by the studio coordinator to discuss your availability for best dates and times.
  3. The Professional Development leadership will review your request and suggest additional experts, for a total of 4-6 to participate.
  4.  A doodle poll will be sent to the experts to find the best time to conduct the studio.
  5.  The entire planning process can take up to a month. For individuals with submission deadlines, it is imperative to put in a request 6-8 weeks in advance.
  6.  A meeting location will be reserved by the coordinator and Zoom will be available for those attending from outside of Omaha.
  7.  At the session, the investigator will present their proposal to the group for approximately 10-15 minutes. A PowerPoint may be used but is not required. This will be followed by an open discussion with the experts.
  8.  Each expert provides verbal and written feedback during the session which is sent to the investigator after the studio. The session will also be recorded and sent to the investigator.
  9.  The investigator will be sent a link to evaluate the effectiveness of the session.
  10.  In 6 months and again at 12 months, the studio coordinator will follow-up to ask for a progress report.

Request a Research Studio 

Please select from one of the following options:

  1. Aims page review and refinement: Submit Aims page (1 page) with brief proposed methods (1-2 pages if drafted and you would like feedback).  Identify team members or need to identify team members.
  2. Mock review of full research proposal: Submit Aims page plus research strategy (e.g. 6 pages for R21; 12-pages for R01) with your application guidelines that addresses Significance, Innovation, and Approach – design, sample, variables/measures, procedure, and data analysis sections for review a minimum of 4 weeks (6-8 preferred) prior to grant submission deadline. Please include summary sheet(s) with proposal(s) for discussion as well as any revisions made, if applicable. No appendices please.
  3.  Brainstorming Session: For recently completed projects or individuals who are attempting to transition to external funding but have questions. Investigators with completed projects must submit a descriptive narrative, the results from your project, and what potential roadblocks you may have in your next application.


For additional information or to set up a studio, please contact the Great Plains IDeA-CTR office at 402-552-2260 or