Department of Defense (DoD)

The Department of Defense provides support for research and technology through a number of departments. The majority of funding is available through the following:

To secure funding to advance your scientific research, or to acquire or develop research instrumentation, you must make the case of how your proposed work would advance the priorities of the DOD office you are targeting. Each department publishes annually a Broad Agency Announcement (BAA) to announce their areas of interest. Note, these BAAs are by department, not discipline. Therefore, your area of research might coincide with needs in multiple departments. Read the BAAs thoroughly. It is then also best practice to contact the officers at DoD to discuss your proposed work to determine whether there is sufficient synergy with their needs to respond to an RFP. If there is no particular solicitation that seems to fit your work, but you think there might be a good match with the mission, you might start out with a very brief email to solicit a conversation. If the program officer is interested in learning more he/she might ask for a brief concept paper summarizing the proposed activity.

For more information, please see the DOD's Doing Business with the Defense Sciences Office.

The United States Army Research Laboratory (ARL) appoints recent Ph.D. or Sc.D. graduates to conduct high impact basic and applied research under the guidance of an ARL advisor through several postdoctoral research programs. Initial appointments are for one year and can be renewed for a second or third year based on a progress and proposed continuation plan, the recommendation of the adviser, and availability of funding. Stipends range from ~$70K to $80K, depending on the program, location, ARL directorate, and academic discipline of the applicant's degree. 

For the ARL list of postdoctoral opportunities, click here.

Young Investigator Program (YIP)

Individual awards are made to U.S. institutions of higher education, industrial laboratories, or non-profit research organizations where the principal investigator is employed on a full-time basis and holds a regular position. YIP primary investigators must be a U.S. citizen, national, or permanent resident. Researchers working at a Federally Funded Research and Development Center or DoD Laboratory are not eligible for this competition.

Most YIP awards are funded at $120,000 per year for three years, for a total of $360,000. Exceptional proposals will be considered individually for higher funding levels and/or longer duration

Young Faculty Award (YFA)

The objective of the DARPA Young Faculty Award (YFA) program is to identify and engage rising research stars in junior faculty positions at U.S. academic institutions and introduce them to Department of Defense needs as well as DARPA’s program development process.

The YFA program provides funding, mentoring and industry and DoD contacts to awardees early in their careers so they may develop their research ideas in the context of DoD needs. The program focuses on untenured faculty, emphasizing those without prior DARPA funding. The long-term goal of the YFA program is to develop the next generation of academic scientists, engineers and mathematicians in key disciplines who will focus a significant portion of their careers on DoD and national security issues.