Environmental Solutions Venture Projects

IoES faculty grant program to support interdisciplinary environmental research at UCLA.


Research projects should:

  • Have the potential to produce new conceptual approaches or solutions to environmental or sustainability challenges; or
  • Explore new historical, social, or cultural dimensions of major environmental challenges; or
  • Assess the values and ethics of proposed solutions to major environmental problems; or
  • Develop new communication strategies regarding major environmental problems.

Research projects are encouraged that:

  • Address challenges within one or more of the IoES research centers or working groups;
  • Involve junior faculty;
  • Involve faculty who have not previously worked together.


  • One of the co-PIs must be a faculty member of the IoES [includes core, associate (without salary), and adjunct faculty]. Click here to view a list of faculty. IoES Affiliate faculty and other UCLA faculty may be co-PIs or Team Members;
  • Proposal must address a problem requiring expertise from two or more disciplinary areas, with two or more co-PIs/Team Members from different departments, schools or centers.
  • Projects that address topics of the IoES research centers and working groups should be submitted in conjunction with those centers. These centers address: global biodiversity and health, climate change science and solutions, corporate environmental performance, California conservation science, California sustainable communities, coastal management, air pollution, and sustainable water resources: www.environment.ucla.edu/research


  • Projects will be considered with budgets up to $20,000.
  • Support may be requested for personnel (undergraduate, graduate, or postdoctoral scholars, or research assistants), research expenses, working session expenses, or research-related travel.
  • Support for faculty salary is allowed, but salary for just one faculty member must not constitute the entire budget.
  • Apportionment of personnel and salaries must be clearly indicated in the budget, and each participant’s role and responsibility must be specified in the budget justification.

Grant period: The grant period is 2 years, December 1, 2013 through November 30, 2015.


  • The final product should be a formal written report or working paper suitable for web publication, a published article or a proposal for a larger grant based on specific results of this award.
  • Final product is due by the end of the grant period.
  • It is expected that future grants based on this work will be administered through the IoES.


Proposals are due October 31, 2013, 5:00 pm.

Awards will be announced December 1, 2013.

The Selection Committee will include IoES faculty members from the natural sciences, social sciences, humanities or professional schools who are not applying for grants, and up to two members from IoES administration.


Proposal must include:

  1. Project Summary: 250 word abstract including title, participants, project description, product, and budget request.
  2. Project Title
  3. Participants: Identify all team members including the co-PIs and additional Team Members and indicate departmental affiliations and brief description of areas of expertise.
  4. Qualifications: 2 page CV for all participants.
  5. Project Description: Should describe clearly the problem to be addressed, project objectives, desired results, research methods, and compelling statement of how team members will operate as an integrated unit. Please articulate your research in the larger framework of a major environmental challenge. Briefly articulate how this project might evolve with outside funding. The description must not exceed 2,000 words.
  6. Project Product: Briefly describe the final product of your project (research paper, white paper, survey questionnaire, pilot data for grant proposal, etc.), the communities, stakeholders or environmental decision makers that would benefit from understanding your results, and how your team plans to engage those stakeholders regarding the research.
  7. Other Support: Please indicate whether the research proposed is related to any existing grant support or if any team members are applying for other grants to support this research.
  8. Budget: Please include a line-item budget and a 1-page maximum description of the support requested and indicate how the funding will be distributed across the collaborative team.
  9. Submission: The Project Summary should be submitted in one PDF file while the rest of the proposal, including components 2-8, should be submitted in a second file to esvpgrants@ioes.ucla.edu.


1. Do grant collaborators have to be core faculty of the IoES?

Answer: No. Core Faculty, Adjunct Faculty and Associate Faculty (appointment approved by the Academic Senate) are qualified to be Principal Investigators on these grant proposals. However, the PI’s can request a member of the Affiliate Faculty (who is approved by the Director as a member informally) be a Co-PI on a proposal. There are nearly 100 faculty associated with the IoES as Core, Adjunct, Associate or Affiliate Faculty, based in every school and nearly every department at UCLA listed here on the IoES website http://www.environment.ucla.edu/people/

2. Do grants overhead have to be paid by the recipients?

Answer: No, there is no overhead on these grants, as the source is a gift fund where the IoES already paid a 6.5% gift tax.

3. If the grant funds are used to fund a student as a GSR. does the grant have to pay for student fees.

Answer: Yes, if the percentage time for the GSR goes over 25%, student fees must be paid, at the rate of $4,943.21 per quarter.

For more information or if you have any questions about your project or research ideas, send an email to esvpgrants@ioes.ucla.edu and ESVP committee chair Prof. Richard Ambrose will provide a response.

This program is based in part on the Environmental Venture Project program of the Woods Institute for the Environment at Stanford University.

Environmental Venture Research Grants for 2013

Heath Impact Assessments for the Proposed REDD+ Activities in and Around the Dja Reserve: Initial Stages

Principal Investigator: Hilary Godwin

Co-Principal Investigator(s): Kevin Njabo, Susanna Hecht and Tom Smith

Other Participants: Savanna Carson, Brian Cole

A Working Paper Summarizing Insights will be published online and is expected to assist program and researchers globally

The Wastewater Treatment Plant of the Future: Transforming Wastewater Treatment from a Cost-Center to a Profit-Center by Harvesting Fresh Water, Liquid and Solid

Principal Investigator: Eric M.V. Hoek

Co-Principal Investigator(s): J.R. DeShazo

Other Participants: Post Doc

Final report (1), Article publication (1), Proposal for a larger grant

Predicting Environmental Impacts: Integration of Emerging Science Into Public and Private Decision-Making

Principal Investigator: Hilary Godwin

Co-Principal Investigator(s): Timothy Malloy, Patrick Allard

Other Participants: Joseph Doherty, Daniela Parodi, and Ela Beryt.

The project will generate multiple products: a publication in a peer-reviewed journal regarding the findings of the study, a white paper for distribution to relevant stakeholder groups i.e., business, regulatory agencies and non-governmental organizations), and pilot data to support a funding proposal for the larger road-mapping project. We also plan to disseminate the results of the study through presentations at scientific and policy conferences.

Hydrologic modeling of California coastal lagoons

Principal Investigator: David Jacobs

Co-Principal Investigator(s): Alex Hall, Mike Stenstrom, Steven Margulis

"Project Product: This project will provide two final products. First, at least one research paper will be produced focusing on the methodology that is appropriate to model stream flow based on precipitation events in southern California streams. Second, the information gained from this project will act as pilot data for our more detailed project on modeling closure dynamics in California lagoons and estuaries where we are seeking"

Human Behavior and Intelligent Energy Systems in the Commercial Sector

Principal Investigator: Magali Delmas

Co-Principal Investigator(s): Matt Kahn, William Kaiser

"The results will be analyzed and presented at meetings and disseminated through peer-reviewed publications in academic economics journals and other outlets, including public release of the work to investors, researchers and the general public. This project contains significant public outreach and educational components. We will engage local commercial interests and managers on energy efficiency and conservation strategies. We will also distribute findings with executives in our UCLA Corporate Partners program and events, which support cutting-edge corporate environmental research and education with leaders in “green business.”"