AEACGR: Government Funding for Economic Research

Where to Apply
The AEAweb provides information on funding for economists and news on recent funding developments of particular interest to economists. is a central storehouse for information on over 1,000 grant programs and provides access to approximately $500 billion in annual awards. The Department of Health and Human Services is the program’s managing partner, and allows access to the 26 federal grant-making agencies available through this convenient E-Government initiative. All discretionary grants offered by these agencies can be found on You can go here to find and apply for these grant opportunities.

Advice on How to Apply
Postcards from the NSF, by Matthew O. Jackson and Laura Razzolini (a guide to applying for research funding from the NSF).

The National Institutes of Health provide information on New and Early Stage Investigator Policies. The National Institute of Aging Division of Behavioral and Social Research Links to Useful Websitesaddresses questions frequently asked by social scientists.

Research Projects and Research Proposals: A Guide for Scientists Seeking Funding, by Paul G. Chapin (book available from Cambridge University Press)

Important Funding Opportunities
We provide additional information on the government programs that provide the most external funding for academic economic research:


  • The Economics Program supports research designed to improve the understanding of the processes and institutions of the U.S. economy and of the world system of which it is a part. This program also strengthens both empirical and theoretical economic analysis as well as the methods for rigorous research on economic behavior. It supports research in almost every area of economics, including econometrics, economic history, environmental economics, finance, industrial organization, international economics, labor economics, macroeconomics, mathematical economics, and public finance.
  • The Economics Program is alerting economists who do computer intensive research to a new funding opportunity.  The ICES (Interface between Computer Science and Economics and Social Sciences) Program is soliciting research proposals on the boundary between computer science and economics & social sciences.  The ICES website provides the full solicitation with all the details about ICES, including a non-exhaustive list of example topics.  The Economics Program can also co-review proposals with ICES.  Contact Nancy Lutz, the Economics Program Director, at if you are wondering "Is my project suitable for ICES?" Be sure to include a one or two page description with your email.
  • The Science of Science & Innovation Policy (SciSIP) program supports research designed to advance the scientific basis of science and innovation policy. The program funds research that develops data, models and tools that can be applied in the science and innovation policy decision making process. Researchers are also encouraged to create or improve science and engineering data, metrics and indicators reflecting current discovery, particularly proposals that demonstrate the viability of collecting and analyzing data on knowledge generation and innovation in organizations. The research of economists funded by the SciSIP program can be found here.
  • The Decision, Risk and Management Sciences program supports scientific research directed at increasing the understanding and effectiveness of decision making by individuals, groups, organizations, and society. Disciplinary and interdisciplinary research, doctoral dissertation research, and workshops are funded in the areas of judgment and decision making; decision analysis and decision aids; risk analysis, perception, and communication; societal and public policy decision making; management science and organizational design.
  • The Division of Science Resources Statistics (SRS) fulfills the legislative mandate of the National Science Foundation Act to provide a central clearinghouse for the collection, interpretation, and analysis of data on scientific and engineering resources, and to provide a source of information for policy formulation by other agencies of the Federal Government. To carry out this mandate, SRS designs, supports, and directs about 11 periodic surveys as well as a variety of other data collections and research projects. In addition to the SRS surveys, designed and managed by SRS staff and conducted primarily by contractors or the Bureau of the Census, the Division also supports a small program of extramural research on both methodological and substantive areas related to the work of SRS. The Division also supports several programs that encourage the training and development of additional researchers to analyze SRS data, through training workshops, small grants, and fellows programs.
  • The Methodology, Measurement, and Statistics (MMS) Program is an interdisciplinary program in the Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences that supports the development of innovative analytical and statistical methods and models for those sciences. MMS seeks proposals that are methodologically innovative, grounded in theory, and have potential utility for multiple fields within the social and behavioral sciences. As part of its larger portfolio, the MMS Program partners with a consortium of federal statistical agencies to support research proposals that further the development of new and innovative approaches to surveys and to the analysis of survey data.


  • The Division of Behavioral and Social Research (BSR) in the National Institute of Aging supports basic social and behavioral research and research training on the processes of aging at both the individual and societal level. It focuses on how people change over the adult life course and on the societal impact of the changing age-composition of the population. BSR fosters research that reaches across disciplinary boundaries, at multiple levels from the genetic to comparisons across national boundaries, and at stages from basic through translational.
  • The Demographic and Behavioral Sciences (DBS) Branch in the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development funds demographic, behavioral, and social sciences research on fertility, families, population movement, morbidity and mortality, HIV/AIDS, and population composition. Research on population diversity and change, studies of the consequences of population diversity and change for health and well-being, and research on the interrelationships among individual, family, group, community, and population processes are all central to this mission.