AES Seed Grant Program Overview and Application Guidelines

Last updated July 13, 2020


The AES Seed Grant Program provides support to established investigators to:

  • Pursue new and innovative directions in epilepsy research
  • Bring new research methods to their research programs
  • Begin new collaborations with other investigators in epilepsy or in different, complementary disciplines

These small awards are designed to enable preliminary investigations that will lay the groundwork for subsequent substantial grants from government, industry, or other funding sources for research to advance the understanding, treatment, and prevention of epilepsy.

Seed grants may provide up to $20,000 for one year for direct costs only. They may not be renewed. Examples of allowable costs include research project supplies and expenses related to information and technology exchange, such as travel for postdoctoral fellows between collaborating laboratories. The number of awards made each year is contingent on available funds.


 All applications must meet the following eligibility criteria. In rare cases, exceptions may be made for an award fully funded by a partner organization. 

  1. Applications may come from individual investigators or from two or more collaborating investigators. The primary investigator (PI) or at least one of the primary investigators in a multiple-PI seed grant must be:
    • A member of AES
    • An established investigator with at least an Associate Professor or equivalent level appointment
    • An epilepsy-focused academic investigator. An assistant professor(s) may serve as a collaborator or Co-PI on the project provided that the application is submitted by the established professor and the award is contracted at least in part for use by the established professor
  2. The proposed research must be in a new direction that could not be initiated without Seed support. Proposals are welcome across the spectrum of epilepsy research, including basic, translational, clinical, and outcomes-related research.
  3. If a project involves a collaboration between two or more investigators, preference will be given to collaborations that are new and/or involve investigators at different institutions or in different disciplines or fields of research.
  4. Although collaborations between academic and industry investigators will be considered, the grant must go to an academic institution and the academic investigator should be the primary investigator. Preference will be given to collaborations between academic investigators.
  5. Applications that propose only infrastructure development with no primary research or data collection will not be accepted.
  6. Preference will be given to applications for research to be conducted at US institutions. Depending on available funds, applications may be considered from investigators outside the US who otherwise meet the eligibility criteria.


AES is proud to partner with other non-profit organizations to make dollars go further to support epilepsy researchers. Funding partners listed here may choose to support top-scored research proposals that align with the mission of their organization. If you grant permission during your application process, your application and its materials may be confidentially shared with these and other non-profit partners to consider for full or partial support.


Seed Grant Terms and Conditions are available for download through proposalCENTRAL and contain information on AES’s policies related to use of human subjects, use of animal subjects, and other conditions of the award.

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