Opportunity number
Department of Energy (DOE) Department of Homeland Security (DHS) National Science Foundation (NSF)
Civic Innovation Challenge
Due date
Stage 1: May 05, 2022, Stage 2: February 1, 2023
Advanced Manufacturing Agriculture Community Development Economic Development Education Education & Workforce Energy Environment Information Technologies Innovation Public Safety Research Transportation Workforce Development
Project funding
$500,000 - $1M
Program funding
Funding size
Below $1M Up to $1M

Civic Innovation Challenge (CIVIC)

RFP Summary provided by the agency

CIVIC aims to accelerate the transition to the practice of foundational research and emerging technologies into communities through civic-engaged research while deepening cooperation and information sharing across sectors and regions. By addressing priorities at the local scale that are relevant across the US, CIVIC is laying the foundation for a broader and more fluid exchange of research and technology capabilities and civic priorities through joint partnerships involving civic stakeholders and the research community.

CIVIC funds projects that pilot state-of-the-art solutions over 12 months, following a six-month planning phase, and have the potential for lasting impact in the partnering community as well as the potential to be scaled and implemented in other communities. CIVIC is organized as a two-stage competition with two tracks centered around the following topic areas:

  • Track A. Living in a changing climate: pre-disaster action around adaptation, resilience, and mitigation; and
  • Track BBridging the gap between essential resources and services & community needs.

CIVIC project teams must include civic partners and stakeholders working together with researchers to develop, pilot, and evaluate the proposed project. Civic partners and stakeholders may include local, state, or tribal government officials; non-profit representatives; community organizers or advocates; community service providers; and/or others working to improve their communities.

Additional Links:




What is the mission and focus of the program: research, social, economic or others?

Science and Technology and other Research and Development

How do you submit to this opportunity?

Apply on grants.gov

Who are the target applicants: cities, universities, companies, small business, nonprofits, or others?

Non-profit, non-academic organizations: Independent museums, observatories, research labs, professional societies and similar organizations in the U.S. associated with educational or research activities. -Institutions of Higher Education (IHEs) – Two- and four-year IHEs (including community colleges) accredited in, and having a campus located in the US, acting on behalf of their faculty members. Special Instructions for International Branch Campuses of US IHEs: If the proposal includes funding to be provided to an international branch campus of a US institution of higher education (including through use of subawards and consultant arrangements), the proposer must explain the benefit(s) to the project of performance at the international branch campus and justify why the project activities cannot be performed at the US campus. *Who May Serve as PI: There are no restrictions or limits.

Webinar Information

Webinar on February 25, 2022 1:30 PM. Register here

  • An overview of the CIVIC program, including its goals and structure
  •  Details of the new solicitation and important submission information for potential proposers across academia, community organizations, and state and local government
  • Q&A with CIVIC Program Directors

Example project(s) summaries from past RFPs:


Investigator(s): Kang Shin (Principal Investigator)
Sponsor: University of Michigan Ann Arbor

The objective of this research is to (1) gain insights into the challenges of securing interactions in Internet of Things (IoT)deployments, (2) develop a practical framework that mitigates security and privacy threats to IoT interactions, and (3) validate the proposed framework in a medium-scale IoT testbed and through user studies. The emerging IoT computing paradigm promises novel applications in all sectors by enabling interactions between users, sensors, and actuators. These interactions can take the form of device-to-device (e.g., Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE)) or human-to-device (e.g., voice control). By exploiting vulnerabilities in these interaction surfaces, an adversary can gain unauthorized access to the IoT, which enables tracking, profiling, and posing harm to the user. With thousands of diverse IoT manufacturers, developers, and devices, it is challenging, if not impossible, to ensure all devices are properly secured at production and kept up to date after production. IoT users and administrators must place their trust in a set of devices, with the least secure device breaking the security chain.

By shifting the trust base from the various manufacturers and developers to a single framework under the user’s control, deploying IoT devices will be more feasible and less vulnerable. The proposed framework will help advance national health, prosperity, welfare, and secure national defense. Securing IoT interface surfaces as case studies will be integrated in graduate-level courses and used to train (especially underrepresented and female) students with interdisciplinary topics that require a balanced mix of theory and practice, thus developing human resources in the nationally needed areas. The proposed research will also significantly advance the understanding of the challenges to secure IoT interaction surfaces in practice, thus promoting the progress of science. This project will establish a general direction to secure interactions in the current and future IoT deployments. It will offer an additional protection layer in cases where security cannot be properly built-in and maintained.


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