Program Development

Notice:  Washington Sea Grant is not currently accepting program development proposals.

Washington Sea Grant (WSG) is part of a national network, funded and coordinated by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) through a federal–state partnership. WSG activities are funded through a federal omnibus grant that integrates research, education, public engagement, and administrative activities.

WSG sets aside a portion of its federal budget for small Program Development grants that allow timely responses to new or changing needs and provide the capacity to plan and begin implementation in emerging program areas. The grants address problems and opportunities that further our mission, but which may not be readily identified during our program’s four-year planning and budgeting cycle or fit into our competitive research project selection cycle. While there are no fixed limits on support available for a Program Development grant, funding generally ranges from approximately $1,000 to $25,000.

Program Development funds may be used for diverse purposes that fall into several categories:

  • rapid response research, education, and outreach activities to address urgent marine and coastal needs;
  • early start-up of projects that will become part of our next four-year planning cycle;
  • joint activities with other Sea Grant College programs or partners;
  • seed grants to support new technologies or young investigators;
  • seed grants to expand WSG-supported research and education;
  • participation in activities that build and strengthen ties within and among marine sectors and institutions;
  • student support, through advisor or school, to complete long-term projects and allow participation in educational activities;
  • program planning and development; and
  • needs not anticipated during routine WSG planning cycles.

Notice: WSG is not currently accepting Program Development proposals. Please do not send proposals.


For reference only: Requests under $10,000 (including indirect costs)

Proposals of not more than four pages should be submitted to and should include the following:

  • applicant’s name, affiliation and contact information;
  • narrative explaining the problem or opportunity being addressed, the timeline and how it fits with WSG objectives;
  • budget detailing how the funds will be spent; and
  • 1- to 2-page resume.
  • Environmental Compliance “NEPA” Questionnaire (see below for details)

For reference only: Requests above $10,000 (including indirect costs)

WSG in the process of converting to a new online proposal system. Please contact if you are trying to submit a proposal for more than $10,000.

Each program development proposal must contain the following components:

  • investigator records and resumes — completed online record and two-page resume for each investigator. A WSG resume template is available in eSeaGrant.
  • project information — project title and list of all team members in addition to investigators.
  • project narrative — up to six pages that include: (a) problem or opportunity addressed by the project; (b) project objectives and how they align with WSG priorities; (c) expected outcomes, including who will be affected and the project benefits; (d) project approach and methodology; and (e) timeline, including project starting and end dates.
  • budget — completed budget worksheet for the project.
  • suggested reviewers — contact details for two reviewers who are not direct project beneficiaries or recent collaborators and are qualified to provide independent and knowledgeable reviews.
  • Environmental Compliance “NEPA” Questionnaire (see below for details)

All applicants will receive a response via email to their Program Development proposal submission. While WSG will try to honor time-sensitive requests, please allow 45 days for decisions on funding requests under $10,000. WSG will conduct one or more external peer reviews of grant applications that request a total of more than $10,000 (including indirect costs). Requests that require more extensive peer review may require up to 75 days for a decision.


Required Environmental Compliance “NEPA” Questionnaire

NOAA requires all Sea Grant funding applicants to submit an Environmental Compliance “NEPA” Questionnaire:

  • Review the NEPA Questionnaire instructions and examples (links below).
  • Complete the NEPA Questionnaire form (link below) and include it with your Program Development funds application.
  • The questionnaire does not count toward the page limit.
  • Note: After review you will have an opportunity to edit/amend your questionnaire if required and your responses to the questionnaire will not be included in the criteria used to review the merits of your proposal.
  • Contact Deborah Purce ( with any questions.

NEPA Compliance Documents: