Proposal Development: SPA Services & Timeline

Proposal Development is the process of strategizing and creating a proposal’s content. SPA will assist with developing an initial idea into a highly competitive proposal for submission.

Services offered include:


  • Help with identifying funding opportunities and developing faculty career research plans
  • Proposal approach and design


  • Research objectives and proposal structure/logic
  • Understanding how and on what criteria the proposal will be reviewed
  • Non-science aspects of proposals (Broader Impacts)
  • Evaluation plans & logic models
  • Graphics

Writing support:

  • Writing for a target audience
  • Developmental & copy editing
  • Writing non-technical sections

Mentoring & teaching:

  • Grant writing bootcamps
  • Faculty & postdoc development

Managing proposal development:

  • Facilitating & herding collaborative proposals
  • Guiding development timelines
  • Project management

The recommended timeline for starting the proposal development process is 3-4 months before the funder’s deadline for submissions; longer for large collaborative projects. The first step is to bring your idea to SPA so that we may co-develop a strategy for moving forward. After closely reading the RFP and discussing your idea, the next step will be drafting an overview of the proposal that will lay the groundwork for what follows — discussing your proposed project with program directors and serving as both map for writing the rest of the proposal and a living document that changes as the ideas mature.

The following table illustrates proposal development services offered on a timeline and indicates when key tasks should be accomplished (click to expand):

turnaround times graphic

To access SPA Proposal Development Services, contact, 212-413-3332.