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Policies for Action: Research on Housing Policies That Promote Equity

Grants to USA Nonprofits, For-Profits, Agencies, and Academic
Institutions for Research on Housing Policies

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF)

Conf. Date:


LOI Date:


Deadline Date:

08/05/20 3:00 PM ET


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Grants to USA and Territories nonprofits, for-profits, government agencies, and academic institutions for research projects that address the efficacy and impact of housing policies. Applicants must submit a letter of intent prior to applying. Priority will be given to proposals that address how such policies affect racial equity in housing and neighborhood conditions.

For this call for proposals (CFP), the Policies for Action (P4A) research program is accepting proposals investigating the effectiveness of state, county, and city public policies aimed at increasing housing affordability and stability, addressing racial segregation and isolation from opportunity, and increasing access to opportunity-rich neighborhoods and place-based resources.

RWJF is particularly interested in understanding how such policies affect racial equity in housing and neighborhood conditions. Given the extensive evidence that already links housing affordability, stability, and neighborhood quality to health, RWJF do not require that the proposed research examine the impact of policy changes on individuals’ health outcomes. The research must, however, centrally focus on evaluation of impact or implementation of one or more public policies.

RWJF is especially interested in proposals that can shed light on policies being implemented in small- and medium-sized cities, which is defined as having populations between 50,000 and 500,000. RWJF is also interested in proposals that can inform policies in different types of housing markets, economic conditions, and geographic locations.

Methods and designs that have been successful in the past vary and include natural experiments; implementation research; microsimulation studies; randomized controlled trials; linkages and analyses of existing data sources; mixed-methods analyses; and qualitative research. Various data sources can be proposed to be analyzed, such as social service and other public records; restricted-access survey or administrative data; social media data; and marketing data. Given that it can take a long time to gain access to restricted data, preference will be given to investigators who already have access to any restricted-use data proposed, as well as data that can be disaggregated by race/ethnicity. Investigators may also propose research that would serve as a continuation or supplement to other existing programs or research studies.

For more information on proposal preferences, as well as a list of potential research questions, see: ;

Grant funds may be used for project staff salaries, consultant fees, data collection and analysis, meetings, supplies, project-related travel, and other direct project expenses, including a limited amount of equipment essential to the project.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 188454

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Estimated Size of Grant:

Each grant awarded will be up to $250,000.

Term of Contract:

The program will fund studies that can be conducted expeditiously, given the maximum duration of 24 months, using valid research designs and analytic strategies.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Eligible applicant organizations include academic institutions; public entities; private nonprofit organizations; state and local government agencies; and for-profit organizations. All organizations must be based in the United States or its territories. Applicants also may represent partnerships between service providers or practitioners and researchers.

RWJF strongly encourages applications that include researchers who are from groups that are underrepresented in policy research and/or who are affiliated with institutions that serve underrepresented groups, such as historically black colleges and universities; academic institutions serving primarily Latino students such as the Hispanic Centers of Excellence; tribal colleges; and other similar institutions.

Though not required, RWJF encourages proposals that pair government and for-profit/nonprofit housing actors with researchers.

RWJF will not fund research that can only inform policy development.

Though important, the focus of this CFP is not on policies related to homelessness or people currently unhoused.

In keeping with RWJF policy, grant funds may not be used to subsidize individuals for the costs of their health care, to support clinical trials of unapproved drugs or devices, to construct or renovate facilities, for lobbying, for political activities, or as a substitute for funds currently being used to support similar activities.

Pre-proposal Conference:

March 30, 2020 (2 p.m. ET)
Optional applicant webinar

Registration is required through this link:

Pre-Application Information:

Key Dates:

- March 30, 2020 (2 p.m. ET) Optional applicant webinar.
- April 29, 2020 (3 p.m. ET) Deadline for receipt of letters of intent.*
- August 5, 2020 (3 p.m. ET) Deadline for receipt of full proposals.*
- Late September 2020 Notification of finalists.
- November 15, 2020 Grants begin.

Selected Phase 1 applicants will be invited to submit a full proposal of no more than 10 pages accompanied by a detailed budget, budget narrative, detailed communication plan and additional information.

All applicants should log in to the system and familiarize themselves with online proposal requirements well before the final submission deadline. Staff may not be able to assist all applicants in the final 24 hours before the submission deadline.

Funding Process and FAQs:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Apply online:

Please direct inquiries to:
Policies for Action National Coordinating Center
Urban Institute
Phone: (202) 261-5300

Lisa Dubay, PhD, co-director
Laudan Aron, MA, co-director
Katie Deming, MS, deputy director

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Alabama;   Alaska;   Arizona;   Arkansas;   California;   Colorado;   Connecticut;   Delaware;   Florida;   Georgia;   Hawaii;   Idaho;   Illinois;   Indiana;   Iowa;   Kansas;   Kentucky;   Louisiana;   Maine;   Maryland;   Massachusetts;   Michigan;   Minnesota;   Mississippi;   Missouri;   Montana;   Nebraska;   Nevada;   New Hampshire;   New Jersey;   New Mexico;   New York City;   New York;   North Carolina;   North Dakota;   Ohio;   Oklahoma;   Oregon;   Pennsylvania;   Rhode Island;   South Carolina;   South Dakota;   Tennessee;   Texas;   Utah;   Vermont;   Virginia;   Washington, DC;   Washington;   West Virginia;   Wisconsin;   Wyoming

USA Territories: American Samoa (USA)   Guam (USA)   Puerto Rico (USA)   Virgin Islands (USA)   Northern Mariana Islands (USA)

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