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FAQ’S for Prospective PAm Researchers

Thank you for your interest in submitting a research proposal to Project Apis m. Project Apis m., funded largely by beekeepers and farmers, is dedicated to enhancing the health of honey bees, thereby improving crop production. We seek practical solutions for managed honey bee colonies.

Since its inception in 2006, Project Apis m. has infused over $4 million into bee research and programs, including more than 40 projects projects involving research institutions in 15+ different states. We have brought new technologies to honey bee health research, discovered new pathogens, and developed comprehensive Best Management Practices programs. We currently manage three specialty crop block grants awarded by the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA). Project Apis m. is the largest non-governmental, non-profit bee research funding organization in the USA.

For your information, we have used the following frequently asked questions as a basis for helping you to make the decision to submit a research funding proposal for your project:

What type of research projects does Project Apis m. fund?

Project Apis m. seeks projects that will ultimately improve honey bee health.  Our main areas of focus include:  1) pests and disease prevention and control, 2) honey bee nutrition, 3) impacts of pesticides on bees, and 4) long-term honey bee stock improvement.  We are looking for projects that fill the gaps in honey bee research. The reviewers will ask questions that ensure the beekeeping community as a whole will benefit from the research and that research funding does not benefit one particular individual or entity.

For example, PAm seeks research projects that will:

Enhance the economic viability of pollination businesses.
Provide practical solutions for managed colonies.
Yield results that can be efficiently transferred into field practice.
Provide an excellent rate of return for beekeepers and farmers.

How much does PAm fund?

PAm funding is dependent on the project and the goals. We have funded from $5,000 – $120,000. Typically, proposals are in the range from $20,000 to $40,000. We fund what it takes to conduct a study, less contributions from other sources. As you might imagine, the higher the funding request, the more scrutiny administered in the proposal review.

Who may apply for project funds?

Project Apis m. funds research institutions, USDA-ARS, universities, agricultural extension, etc. Our scientific advisors are sticklers on scientific methods, proper controls, and reproducible results. The treatments have to be clear cut, have practical implications, and generally lend themselves to statistical interpretation.

What is the process for proposal submission?

Interested parties submit proposals. The proposals are sent for review by a panel of scientific advisors. After scientific review, with emphasis especially in the materials and methods sections and practicality for beekeepers, proposals are often edited by the applicant to conform to PAm’s high standards. They are then reviewed by the Board of Directors (all beekeepers) along with recommendations from the advisory panel. The Board meets about every six to eight weeks by teleconference call and reviews proposals at each meeting.

To whom do I submit proposals?

Please submit proposals directly to Danielle Downey at

If you are unknown to the PAm Board and scientific advisors, you may need to submit more background information on yourself. Please include your curriculum vitae, including a list of relevant publications and other work you have accomplished. If you are new to PAm, you will be required to thoroughly build the case for your hypothesis and provide professional references. We have funded scientists that were unknown to the beekeeping industry, but they were well-known in their disciplines, i.e., human virology, and we sought their help in looking at honey bees.

When do I submit proposals?

Proposals may be submitted at any time. There is no proposal deadline. Proposals will be reviewed by the Board at its next regular meeting.

What is the format for the proposal?

Major elements include:

1. Title and Principal Investigator – If cooperating investigators are contacted by PAm and are unaware that their names have been added to the proposal, the proposal will not be submitted to the PAm Board for consideration.
2. Date and Duration of Proposed Study
3. Problem and Significance
4. Objectives
5. Materials and Methods
6. Intended Outcome – This statement most likely blends the objectives into a concise summary while providing the bottom-line justification for why PAm should fund your project.
7. Economic Feasibility for New Products
8. Project Timeline
9. References
10. Budget Request – PAm does not pay indirect costs (IDC’s) or overhead.

How is payment made for successful research projects?

PAm pays 50% upon funding and 50% upon receipt of the final report. PAm may also require a 400-word PAm website summary written in layman’s terms

Should I first float a Concept Proposal?

If you do not wish to write a formal proposal yet or you do not need the funding immediately, you may want to present a Concept Proposal to the Board presenting what it is you want to do in the way of research. After feedback you may more successfully move forward with the formal proposal.

The Concept Proposal would include background for the study, identification of the principal investigators, their histories and qualifications to conduct the proposed study, the objectives of the study, and an approximate budget.

Thank you for your interest in helping the honey bee.

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