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Limited Submissions - A07


Limited Submissions are funding opportunities in which the sponsor only allows a specific and limited number of proposals from a given institution. Extra submissions can result in rejection of all proposals submitted by that institution. The Office of the Vice President for Research and Creative Activity (VPR) has oversight of the internal selection process. The Office of Research and Sponsored programs (ORSP) in close communication with the Associate Deans for Research (ADR) are charged with implementing the process.


This procedure applies to all sponsored projects subject to OU Policy 19.045 Administering External Grants and Contracts set up as separate accounts in the OHIO Financial Management System (FMS).

Individuals should not proceed with an application to a limited submission opportunity without obtaining approval from the Office of the Vice President for Research and Creative Activity by indicating an Intent to Submit following the process outlined below.

Announcements: Every effort will be made to identify and announce programs with limitations on the number of proposal submissions. Identified programs will be listed in Pivot under the link for Limited Submission opportunities.  Additionally, Limited Submission opportunities posted in Pivot will display the LIMITED icon in the title and include an internal deadline at the bottom of the announcement. Learn more on how to use Pivot. If you are interested in an opportunity that is not in Pivot, please notify the ORSP Service Center. The ORSP Service Center Coordinator will post the opportunity to Pivot and enter an internal deadline to initiate the limited submission process.

Intent to Submit: The primary purpose of the Intent to Submit is to enable the prompt initiation of the proposal selection process. University-affiliated individuals interested in pursuing a Limited Submission opportunity will provide an Intent to Submit to the ORSP Service Center. Refer to the Intent to Submit procedure for further instructions. The Intent to Submit notification must include the name and title of the principal investigator and co-investigators, departmental affiliation, planned proposal title and a summary statement about the project (if available).

Selection Process: Individuals/teams that indicate an Intent to Submit will be notified within two business days following the internal deadline with either an approval to proceed with a submission or that a competitive review is required.

When the number of applicants indicating an Intent to Submit is equal to or less than the maximum number of allowed submissions, those individuals/teams will be approved to proceed with a proposal submission.

When a larger number of Intent to Submit notices are received and there are multiple individuals/teams from the same College/Department, the Associate Dean for Research (ADR) will be asked to facilitate the decision.

In some cases, high-profile opportunities, such as center grants or other broad-impact programs, will be closed for internal competition. For example, if an individual/team previously received funding through the same program and continued support is an institutional priority, the PI will be offered the opportunity to submit a proposal for follow-on funding and the limited submission will not be open to normal Internal Competitive Review Process.

Internal Competitive Review Process: An internal review may be required when more individuals/teams are interested in applying to a specific opportunity than the funding agency allows. In this case, the VPR Research Support Manager may request pre-proposals from the individuals/teams that indicated an Intent to Submit. The VPR Research Support Manager will identify an internal faculty review panel to determine which pre-proposal teams have the best chance of success in the external competition and which pre-proposals are best aligned with the University's strategic goals.

The pre-proposal is a brief concept paper limited to 1 page, single-spaced, 1” margins, and minimum 11pt font (references, if applicable, not included in the page limit).  At a minimum, this pre-proposal should describe the aims, significance, the relevance of the proposed project to the funder’s program, and PI and investigator team qualifications. Individuals/teams will also submit short biosketches for the PI and other key personnel following the requirements in the application guidelines for the funding opportunity.

The faculty panel will review proposals and make recommendations to the VPR in consultation with the ADRs. Panel reviewers are encouraged to provide written feedback to be shared with interested applicants, along with any informal feedback that may be helpful in formulating a final proposal to the funding agency. Every attempt is taken to ensure that panel deliberations and final decisions are completed in a timely fashion, to optimize the time available to the applicants for final proposal preparation.

The VPR Research Support Manager will electronically notify all applicants of their proposal status as soon as possible.  

Faculty Responsibility: Once an internal applicant is selected to apply for a specific Limited Submission, they have the responsibility to submit to that program by the designated deadline and to work with the appropriate ORSP Sponsored Programs Manager (SPM) to prepare the best possible proposal. If the applicant decides to decline the selection, they must notify their assigned SPM as soon as possible to permit another faculty member to compete externally.

Intent to Submit received after the expired internal deadline: If the internal deadline has expired and an individual/team indicates an Intent to Submit to a Limited Submission opportunity where no Intent to Submit was previously received, the individual/team will be permitted to proceed with the proposal submission, on a first-come, first-serve basis, if they are able to meet the external sponsor deadline.

In extraordinary cases, the VPR Research Support Manager will extend the internal deadline to solicit proposal activity (with the condition that the external sponsor deadline is not less than 40 days past the internal deadline). In these cases, an expedited announcement and review process will be initiated. An expedited Internal deadline will be posted in Pivot and the ADRs will be notified about the re-announcement with a new, accelerated deadline.

Sample Notification Letter

This is the type of notification you may receive from the VPR Research Support Manager when your proposal is selected to move forward.

Professor Smith,

It is my pleasure to inform you that your application has been selected to represent Ohio University for limited submissions to the [specify agency program]. Congratulations!

Please be aware that there is a required pre-application due by [enter date and time] and a final submission date by [enter date and time].  Also, the proposal should be routed through the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs at least five days in advance of the deadline. Your contact in ORSP is [insert SPM name and phone number).  Please feel free to contact your SPM directly should you have questions about the program or routing process.  

If, for any reason, you find that you will not be able to apply for this opportunity, please let us know as soon as possible by contacting, as there may be alternate applicants who would like to submit. 

Thank you for submitting your proposal to the Internal Limited Submissions process and best wishes for a successful outcome!


Questions regarding this procedure can be sent to

Roles and Responsibilities


CONTRIBUTOR: PI, Department Chair, Dean, ADR



Link to Pivot

RPA01 - How to Use Pivot

RPB01 - Intent to Submit