Chancellor’s Translational Research Initiative (CTRI)

Apply for the opportunity to receive up to $25,000!
Application Deadline: January 28th, 2019 by 5:00pm CST

On behalf of the University of Illinois at Chicago Office of Technology Management (OTM), in partnership with the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research is opening a call for submissions for the Chancellor’s Translational Research Initiative (CTRI).

This CTRI funding is available to support projects that have high potential for commercialization, but are in preparation for proof of concept funding through Illinois Ventures or to have enough translational data for licensing by industrial partners, typically TRL 4 or lower.  Achievement of these early milestones, which are difficult to attract funding through alternate sources, will make them more attractive for licensing or start-up opportunities.  The end goal of this program is to advance UIC innovations to a commercialization outcome.  UIC faculty innovators have the opportunity to receive up to $25,000 per project, to advance technology originating at UIC. The Winter 2019 cycle closes on January, 2019 for submission of applications.

Submit your idea

Key Dates

Applications Open: December 1st, 2018
Deadline: January 28th, 2019 by 5:00 pm CST

Projects must be submitted in PDF format by January 28th, 2018. Timestamps will be noted and there will be no exceptions for proposals received past 5:00 pm. Questions should be sent to as well for a prompt response.

Application Requirements

All proposals must be based on a UIC technology that has been disclosed to the OTM or after completion of the milestone in submitted proposal would result in a disclosure to OTM.

Projects will be reviewed on the basis of technological soundness, commercial market attractiveness and feasibility to meet milestones. Successful proposals will demonstrate outstanding scientific and technological merit whose results can advance the TRL, result in novel intellectual property (IP), and have potential to license to an industrial partner or to an investor-backed start-up company.

Project proposals must contain the following sections and be no longer than 3 pages in length.

  1. Problem being solved
  2. Relevance and commercial or societal impact
  3. Approach detailing a hypothesis and why it is unique
  4. Research plan with a singular milestone to complete during the project period
  5. Budget

Application Process & Criteria

Innovators will have 4 months to complete their projects and the milestones should be directed towards answering a key question on whether the research should progress further or a different path should be pursued.  Eligible applicants are full time faculty, staff, and researchers who have a CFOP account.

A CTRI Review Committee will then review and select finalists from the pool of applicants. Finalists will be selected on the merits of their proposal.  Proposals for CTRI awards will be reviewed and ranked by a panel of faculty representatives of all major colleges from which proposals are received.  Depending on the level of funding, the highest ranking proposals will be awarded funding. The panel’s decision is final.

Technology Readiness Level

Level Description (Physical Sciences) [Life Sciences]) 1


([Basic principles observed])


(Technology concept formulated) [research ideas and protocols developed]


(Experimental proof of principle (PoP)) [Hypothesis testing and initial proof of principle (PoP) is demonstrated in a limited number of in vitro & in vivo models]


(Technology validated in lab) [PoP and safety of candidate formulation/device or system is demonstrated in a defined laboratory or animal model]


(Technology validated in relevant environment (industrially relevant environment in the case of key enabling technologies)) [Pre-clinical studies, including GLPanimal safety & toxicity, sufficient to support further trials]


(Technology demonstrated in relevant environment (industrially relevant environment in the case of key enabling technologies)) [Phase 1 clinical trials support proceeding to phase 2 clinical trials or Class III device safety is demonstrated and in line with predictions]


(System prototype demonstration in operational environment) [Phase 2 clinical trial is completed. Phase 3 clinical trial plan is approved. For devices the final product design is validated and final prototypes are produced and tested]


(System complete and qualified) [Phase 3 clinical trial is complete and licensing/authorization given. For devices market approval given]


(Actual system proven in operational environment (competitive manufacturing in the case of key enabling technologies)) [Post marketing studies and surveillance]