RDE: The Research and Development Excellence Program

About RDEalt

The Research and Development Excellence Program (RDE) targets achieving excellence in science and engineering in Kentucky, through innovation and technology development in existing and emerging areas of research, by making proactive investments through a peer-reviewed competitive selection process.

The RDE Program is managed by the Kentucky Science and Engineering Foundation (KSEF) This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. at the Kentucky Science and Technology Corporation (KSTC)..


HOW TO APPLY FOR RDE-018

A. Important Considerations

  1. Before You Start -- Carefully read "How to Apply", the "RDE Program Description, Proposal Preparation, and Submission Instructions", and "Important Dates".
  2. Logging In -- The login and password must be the PI's data. Do NOT use the email login/password of a consultant, Co-PI, Program Manager, administrator, or other lab/team member.
  3. Requirements and Limitations -- All required information must be entered even if the online system does not prompt the applicant to complete the fields missing data. For example, be sure to include the organization name, PI's complete physical address (not PO Box), key words, areas of expertise, etc. Similarly, formatting limitations must be adhered to even if the online system does not indicate the size has been exceeded (e.g. maximum 300 words for the abstract).
  4. Application Submission and Confirmation -- KSEF must receive the complete electronic submission no later than 4:00 PM ET on the due date. Each submission is electronically time-stamped.
    1. Upon successful completion of application submission, the PI will receive an email confirmation containing the final PDF rendering. If the PI does not receive the email with PDF, then the application has NOT been submitted and the PI should contact the the Program Director by email via This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by no later than 3:00 PM for problem-resolution and application submission completion by the PI before the submission deadline.
    2. The applicant is solely responsible for reviewing the email with PDF to confirm all data is entered as desired, no content is missing, and any page limitations and/or formatting requirements are adhered to on the final PDF rendering. Should changes be necessary, the PI should contact the Program Director by email via This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by no later than 3:00 PM for the application to be unlocked. Revision and resubmission by the PI must be completed before the submission deadline.
    3. Proposals submitted on or around the time of closing are more likely to run into server errors and high internet traffic. It is the applicant's responsibility to finalize the application and complete the online submission on time, and consider the risk of submission failure at a time of high demand. The applicant is solely responsible for timely submission.
  5. Current/Active Awards -- "...the PI will not have an active award...at the time of LOI submission..." Should the PI have a current/active award at the time of the RFP announcement for RDE, the PI may finish the current/active award early by submitting the final report (including completion of all tasks and deliverables) before the RDE LOI due date.
  6. Maximum Budget -- Although the RDE Program maximum award size is $50,000 per year, the RFP maximum budget request specifically for RDE-018 is limited to $30,000.

B. Letter of Intent (LOI)

  1. Carefully review "Important Considerations" above. Begin a LOI application via http://applications.kstc.com on the "LOI" tab. Read the "Browser Compatibility" notice on the application log-in screen, and use a compatible browser on your system for entering data and submitting your application.
  2. Select keywords and areas of expertise thoughtfully and very carefully; these will be used to match reviewers. These should be distinct, specific, and not duplicated. Five keywords/phrases are required plus five additional/different areas of research of potential reviewers. Each keyword/phrase and each area expertise must be entered as a separate line item via the +Add New... button (not listed in one line of text separated by commas).
  3. Use of Internet Explorer to "finalize and submit" is recommended. Prepare and submit the online LOI application before the submission deadline.
  4. All Letters of Intent received on time will be reviewed for appropriateness and fit within the RDE program guidelines. A response, either positive or negative, will be given for each LOI received. To be eligible for an invitation to submit a Full Proposal, a complete LOI must be created and submitted online before the submission deadline. Email submissions are not acceptable.

C. Full Proposal -- by Invitation Only

  1. Carefully review "Important Considerations" above. Begin a Full Proposal application via http://applications.kstc.com. Read the "Browser Compatibility" notice on the application log-in screen, and use a compatible browser on your system for entering data and submitting your application.
  2. Use of Internet Explorer to "finalize and submit" is recommended.
  3. The budget worksheet document download is in Excel XLS format. Do NOT save the budget file in the newer XLSX format. Be sure to retain the XLS format for the upload budget file, saving it as Microsoft Office Excel 97-2003 worksheet. If uploading a scan of the signed budget page in the Full Proposal application, use the highest quality scan available (color preferred).
  4. Limit file names for PDF uploads within the application to a maximum of 25 characters. Do not include spaces or special characters such as ! @ # $ % & () ; [] in the PDF file names.
  5. On the final PDF rendering: the technical narrative must not exceed EIGHT pages in length, the complete Full Proposal must not exceed 24 pages in length (including the table of contents and all uploads and all attachments), and text must display as four lines of text on any given vertical inch (do not reduce the font size or margins to accommodate more information). See "RFP Program Description, Proposal Preparation, and Submission Instructions" for details.
  6. Print and submit your signed budget and cover sheets to your grants management officer (e.g. University Research Administration, Office of Sponsored Projects, Sponsored Programs Grants Administration) for electronic transmittal to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by the required deadline. Proposals without the mandatory signed budget and cover sheets, submitted by the deadline, will be disqualified and not considered for review.

Important Dates: RDE-018

  • October 21, 2014 at 12:01 AM
    Letter of Intent application opens

  • October 24, 2014 at 3PM
    For questions regarding program scope, contact the Program Director before 3PM

  • October 27, 2014 at 3PM
    If you have LOI rendering or submission problems, email the Program Director before 3PM

  • October 27, 2014 at 4PM
    Submission deadline for Letter of Intent

  • October 31, 2014
    Full Proposal invitations announced;
    Full Proposal opens

  • December 22, 2014 at 3PM
    If you have Full Proposal rendering or submission problems, email the Program Director before 3PM

  • December 22, 2014 at 4PM
    Submission deadline for Full Proposal

  • January 5, 2015 at 4PM
    Submission deadline for signed cover and budget (
    note: this deadline is extended until Jan 5, instead of Dec 29, due to the holidays)

  • June 2015 - Funding Decisions

Need Help?

K-SeffyIf you need help or have questions, contact us at KSEFPM@kstc.com. Our office is open Monday-Friday 8:30AM-5:00PM.

For the latest news and announcements on new funding opportunities and events, follow @KSEF_Team on Twitter and sign up for KSEF emails.

Also see "Helpful Links" at the bottom of this page for the most frequently requested links.