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Grants to USA Nonprofits, IHEs, Agencies, and For-Profits
for Research and Projects to Address Workplace Inequity

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Conf. Date:


Deadline Date:

06/27/21 11:59 PM EDT


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Grants to USA and territories IHEs, nonprofits, agencies, for-profits, and researchers for projects to improve workplace equity for minority workers. A letter of inquiry must be submitted prior to submitting a full proposal. Funding is intended for research into projects that will help correct social inequity and offer potential solutions for enduring economic security beginning in the near term and create meaningful upward mobility in the longer term.

WorkRise seeks Letters of Inquiry (LOIs) for research projects that better define a challenge facing economically vulnerable workers and/or generate new evidence about potential solutions, meaning practices, policies, or programs that could increase the economic resilience and mobility of such workers.

Proposals should address critical issues in one of the following four areas. Although projects may address more than one of these areas, applicants will be asked to choose one area as a primary focus of their proposed project:

  1. Macroeconomic forces and policy choices influencing the labor market
  2. Employer practices and worker voice, representation, and power
  3. Skills, search, and job matching
  4. 360-perspective of work and workers and supportive services

For details about each of the above focus areas, seeĀ

WorkRise will award grants to projects deemed to have a high probability of producing rigorous evidence that informs key changemakers and helps shape policies, programs, or practices in their fields of inquiry. High-quality submissions will therefore include a strategy for communicating findings in actionable terms to clearly defined stakeholders and explain how innovative ideas and solutions will advance in ways that would not be possible without investment from WorkRise.

Projects that explicitly consider racial and ethnic inequities, gender disparities, geographic inequalities, and the role of systems or policies in perpetuating such inequities will receive particular interest. Projects that would create new, longitudinal, open-source datasets with the ability to disaggregate by key demographics (such as race, earnings, local labor market geography, industry or occupation, skills, education, gender, and family structure), and projects that consider the particular challenges faced by new labor-market entrants, also are strongly encouraged to apply.

Finally, WorkRise will consider the diversity of project teams across several dimensions, including organizational type, project team composition, geography, and stakeholders who will apply or consume the research results. Applicants are encouraged to assemble teams and partnerships that reflect these priorities. Applications areĀ encouraged from historically Black colleges and universities, Hispanic-serving institutions, and tribal colleges and universities. Projects that cultivate a diverse pipeline of early-career scholars and practitioners are also encouraged.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 190636

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Estimated Size of Grant:

Awards amounts are likely to range between $25,000 and $500,000.

Term of Contract:

Awards will be for a 12- to 18-month grant period. WorkRise's aim is for projects to start as quickly as possible, launching in late fall 2021. But projects with start dates as late as the first quarter of 2022 will be considered.

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. One lead partner should fill out the LOI form on behalf of the partnership and indicate partnering organizations in the relevant field.

WorkRise is only accepting submissions for research projects and pilots of interventions in the United States.

WorkRise 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 Latinx students, such as the Hispanic Serving Institutions; tribal colleges; and other similar institutions.

In general, applicants should be affiliated with an organization to ease the grantmaking process, but individual applicants will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.

WorkRise cannot fund propaganda, lobbying, and other attempts to influence legislation; voter registration drives and other attempts to influence the outcome of public elections; advocacy activities such as litigation; entities that promote or engage in criminal acts of violence, terrorism, hate crimes, the destruction of any state, or discrimination on the basis of race, national origin, religion, military and veteran status, disability, sex, age, or sexual orientation, or support of any entity that engages in these activities.

Pre-proposal Conference:

You are invited to attend an informational webinar on the RFP on May 26, at 2:00 pm ET.

Register here:

Pre-Application Information:

Letters of Inquiry (LOIs) in response to the RFP are due by 11:59 pm EDT, June 27, 2021.

Questions about the RFP process and LOI form are due by 11:59 pm EDT, June 13, 2021. The FAQ will be updated with additional information based on questions WorkRise receives from interested applicants by June 18, 2021.

Troubleshooting questions for the application portal should be submitted no later than June 24, 2021.

In late July, selected applicants will be invited to submit full proposals. Award decisions will be made on a rolling basis beginning in late September or early October.

Please note that you will need to create an account in the WorkRise grant portal to submit your LOI. Before submitting your LOI, please review the terms and conditions in Supporting Documents below.

Applicants may submit more than one LOI, as long as each LOI describes distinct projects and research questions. Please note that it is unlikely that WorkRise will fund more than one grant per organization.

Contact Information:

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

Submit an LOI online:

Please email questions to

500 L'Enfant Plaza SW
Washington, DC 20024

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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