Developing a research proposal for funding is comparable to preparing for a debate which will be judged, but in which you will not be able to respond to your opponent’s comments. You present written arguments in support of a specific position and unknown judges (the Donor’s Review Panel) determine whether the arguments are sufficiently cogent to allow the funds requested to be allocated.
Before you start to develop the research proposal, data collection and research about the Donor are of paramount importance. You need to be familiar with the Donor’s perspectives, the criteria applied to its funding of projects, the kinds of projects that are given preference, the upper and lower limits of its allocations, the countries which are supported and the types of organizations and special interests that are funded. This information is available in the Donor’s Annual Reports, through listings of projects historically funded, on the Internet, in documents which “Call for Proposals” and, in the case of funding which is being provided by foreign Governments, from their Embassies and High Commissions. (Office of Research, 2002)
See guidelines for application process for grants.