The Engagement Awards initiative will consist of three award categories:
- Knowledge Awards, which will fund activities such as background papers, landscape reviews, and development of mechanisms to share PCOR results.
- Training and Development Awards, which will cultivate a larger, better trained and research-ready PCOR community through activities such as ones that will link interested patients, stakeholders and researchers to build research partnerships. The Pipeline to Proposal Awards are the first in this category.
- Implementation Awards, which will support activities such as disseminating information about and encouraging adoption of PCORI funded research results as well as best practices for engaging patients and other stakeholders in PCOR.
To jump-start the initiative, PCORI issued a Request for Quotes (RFQ) to identify five organizations with the experience and skills to distribute Pipeline to Proposal Award funds and manage these awards. Serving as "Intermediate Funders," each of these organizations will be responsible for helping PCORI to select up to 10 patient, stakeholder, or research groups to receive awards of up to $15,000 each. The awards will facilitate the early stages of community-building around a particular topic that can lead to a research question warranting a PCOR project. The deadline for interested parties to submit quotes is July 15.
Prospective Intermediate Funders include organizations skilled in overseeing funding awards in health advocacy, community development, community-based participatory research, or patient-centered outcomes research. Engaging such organizations to manage this process allows PCORI to tap their existing infrastructures as well as their knowledge of their communities.
The initial Pipeline to Proposals Awards will focus on helping groups build partnerships. PCORI will subsequently fund a second tier of such awards focused on developing capacity and infrastructure and strengthening partnerships between these types of groups and researchers interested in working with them. A third tier of these awards will support the development and refinement of the research question these partners would like to see explored through a PCOR study and to develop a research proposal that includes a well-developed plan for patient and stakeholder engagement.