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Vaccine Confidence Fund

Grants to USA, Canada, and International Individuals, Nonprofits, and
IHEs to Study Social Media's Impact on COVID-19 Vaccine Uptake

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Alliance for Advancing Health Online, Facebook and Merck and Co.

Deadline Date:

08/06/21 12:00 AM EST


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Grants to USA, Canada, and International individuals, nonprofit and for-profit organizations, universities, and colleges for research related to social media's impact on public understanding surrounding the Coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccination. Funding is intended to determine methods of increasing public confidence and comfort in receiving the vaccine.

The Fund is seeking proposals that address this primary research question: How can social media be best utilized to better understand and increase vaccination confidence and uptake?

Applicants, especially from interdisciplinary teams and cross-sectoral partnerships, are highly encouraged to develop truly transformative proposals that address critical research gaps with creative solutions. Applicants are also invited to develop their own ideas that align with the Fund’s primary research question and principles. Research proposals should include the following: a well-defined problem statement that articulates a key research gap and/or specifies a focus population (making it clear why this research is novel and how it will add to the current body of understanding); a proposed research methodology and approach (ideally using interdisciplinary methods); and a measurement framework that outlines clear measures and their intended plans for capturing data. In addition, a dissemination plan, timeline, detailed budget and budget narrative, organizational information, and CVs of key project personnel will also be required.

Understanding how social media* can contribute to vaccine uptake is this Fund’s north star. Recognizing the complexity of this challenge, and that vaccination confidence is the pathway to vaccine uptake, this Fund is interested in pursuing new and transformative approaches to addressing the immediate challenges of increasing vaccination confidence and uptake for COVID-19 as well as routine immunizations. As such, this Fund is intentionally less specific about prescribing research questions or methodological agendas. Exciting and innovative approaches that meet the stated criteria are encouraged instead. Proposals that focus on historically marginalized or excluded communities globally are strongly supported. 

*The Fund’s definition of social media is meant to be broad and inclusive. The Fund's social media definition includes: traditional social media, (e.g., Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, TikTok, SnapChat); search engines (e.g., Google, Bing, etc.) and other online platforms that gather user data and micro-target users; and online chatbots. This Fund recognizes that social network data analyses and other big data analytical techniques may also be leveraged as analytical methods in prospective research proposals.

This Fund is interested in proposals which can articulate findings that have either immediate or potential impact on the way vaccination confidence or uptake in communities is understood. However, this Fund is also acutely aware of the ambitious timeline and appreciates that critical data (e.g., data from vaccination centers/health clinics) needed particularly for assessing impact likely will not be publically available during the actual research implementation. As such, where impact data may not be available, this Fund is open to other ways of capturing interim results or measurements (e.g., self-reported data) and particularly welcomes new ideas on how to tackle this issue.

For illustrative research examples, see

Priority will be given to proposals that demonstrate how the Fund’s core principles, as articulated below, will be incorporated into research plans:

  • Equity
  • Community Engagement
  • Interdisciplinary Collaboration
  • External Validity
  • Actionable Focus
  • Transparency and Information Sharing

For additional information on these principles, see:

For information on overheat costs, see FAQs, in Pre-Application Information, below. 

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 197600

Estimated Size of Grant:

- Award amounts will range between $100,000 and $250,000. Please note this Fund is willing to consider proposals up to $400,000 provided there is strong justification for why additional funding is needed.
- The funds will be disbursed in two tranches: (1) upon execution of the Grant Agreement by the parties and (2) following the submission of required reports and information to the Fund manager.

Term of Contract:

The implementation timeline for projects is short from June 30, 2021 (as the earliest potential start date) to January 31, 2022 (as the latest potential end date).

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

This Fund is open to both individuals and organizations applying. Please note that all applicants – regardless of their status as individuals or organizations – will be required to complete a thorough background check.

Nonprofit organizations, for-profit organizations, US universities and colleges, and non-US universities.

Research that takes place in any country is eligible. The goal of the RFP is to ensure diversity of research globally – both high-income and low-income countries.

The Fund will not support:
- Organizations that discriminate on the basis of age, gender, ethnicity, citizenship, disability, race, religion, marital status, sexual orientation, military service, or status.
- Religious organizations, unless the particular program will benefit a large portion of a community without regard to religious affiliation and does not duplicate the work of other agencies in the community.
- Organizations that engage in terrorist activities or are involved in any acts dangerous to human life that are in violation of the criminal laws of any country where the Fund operates, in compliance with the U.S. Patriot Act as well as international anti-terrorism

Pre-Application Information:

Application due date: August 6, 2021, 12:00 AM EST

- June 10, 2021 - RFP released
- August 6, 2021 - Submission deadline
- June 15 – August 20, 2021 - Selection and grant awards (rolling basis)
- June 30, 2021 – January 31, 2022 - Research conducted
- August – October 2021 - Light-touch mid-term review of funded research projects
- February 15, 2022 - Final grantee reporting deadline


Contact Information:

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


Please email for more information.

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)

USA Compact Free Associations: The Federated States of Micronesia (USA)   Marshall Islands (USA)   Republic of Palau (USA)

Canada: Alberta;   British Columbia;   Manitoba;   New Brunswick;   Newfoundland and Labrador;   Northwest Territories;   Nova Scotia;   Nunavut;   Ontario;   Prince Edward Island;   Quebec;   Saskatchewan;   Yukon;


International country outside of the USA, Israel and Canada.

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