Data Science Mini Grants


The Data Science Institute (DSI) invites affiliated faculty to apply for mini grants for the purpose of furthering their data science related research or education.

Data science research will fall under one of three categories:

  1. Foundational data science – i.e., the development of data science methods
  2. The application of data science to one or more fields in the physical, life and social sciences, engineering, or humanities
  3. The study of the impact of data on society and its institutions

Grants may be used for expenses such as purchasing data or licenses for data use, purchasing specialized software or software licenses, bringing visitors to Vanderbilt, hosting workshops at Vanderbilt, supporting the formation of working groups, and travel to conferences or summer schools. Grants may not be used for staff salaries or student stipends and tuition. Most grants are expected to be less than $5k, while grants over $10k will only be awarded in exceptional cases with sufficient justification.

Grants may also be requested in the form of computational resources. The DSI has dedicated compute nodes (both CPU and GPU) at ACCRE that affiliated faculty may apply for to do their research.


Vanderbilt faculty who are affiliated with the DSI may apply.

Application Procedure

To apply for a mini grant, please write a brief (two pages max) proposal that addresses the following

  • A brief description of the planned activity
  • What specifically the requested funds will be used for
  • What the expected impact will be
  • Who will benefit from the activity
  • A budget of how the funds are expected to be used (in the case of computational resources, the budget should specify the number of GPU or CPU node-hours and the time period for which these resources are requested)
  • A statement that the PI does not have other funds for the activity

Please submit the document to Proposals will be evaluated on a rolling basis.

Conditions and Reporting

Awarded funds must be spent by June 1.

Different mechanisms may be used to spend funds, and will be coordinated with the Assistant Director of the Data Science Institute. Barring special circumstances, PIs must agree to make any purchased data available to the broader Vanderbilt community.

Note: The DSI Reserves the Right to Use Any Research Resulting From This Funding for Promotional Purposes.