Research News

Limited Submission Opportunity: 2021 Moore Inventor Fellows

Applications due Oct. 15

This is a joint competition for VU and VUMC investigators. All investigators should follow these instructions.

Vanderbilt (VU and VUMC combined) may nominate up to two candidates for the Moore Inventor Fellows competition. The Moore Foundation aims to support scientist-inventors who create new tools and technologies with a high potential to accelerate progress in the foundation’s areas of interest: scientific discovery, environmental conservation and patient care. Each fellow will receive $675,000 over three years. Fellows’ institutions are required to contribute an additional $50,000 in annual support of the inventor’s work, for a total award of $825,000.


  • Must be within 10 years of receiving advanced terminal degree (M.S., Ph.D. or M.D.)
  • Must be faculty, research scientists, postdocs or other full-time staff
  • May come from a broad array of disciplines including, but not limited to, environmental science and conservation, oceanography, biology, engineering, physics, chemistry, materials science, neurosciences, public health and gerontology

Inventors will be evaluated by their demonstrated creative potential and technical ability for the proposed line of work. Inventions will be evaluated based on their importance in the area of interest, the need for funding to achieve rapid success, and the plausibility of achieving stated impact. See the list of 2020 recipients, and review the guidelines and FAQs linked here for more information.

Internal review process

Anyone interested in being considered as one of Vanderbilt’s nominees must submit the following (in PDF format) to by 5 p.m. on Oct. 15:

  1. Statement of invention (no more than two pages, including citations; single-spaced, 12-point font and one-inch margins). The first paragraph should describe clearly and without jargon the invention, the problem it seeks to address, and its potential impact. The statement of invention should also include the following information:
    1. Description of invention
    2. Importance in the area of science, environmental conservation, or patient care and experience
    3. Stage of invention
    4. Current funding
    5. Feasibility
    6. Approach for measuring progress during the grant term
  2. Budget narrative that outlines how grant funds will be used (one page)
  3. Brief CV (five-page max.) or NIH Biosketch
  4. Statement from department chair or dean to assure that the nominee has at least 25 percent of their time to devote to their invention and $50,000 in annual direct support from the institution (total of $150,000 direct support over the project period).

Submissions should reference the program name in the subject line of the email.

If selected as the nominee, you will be asked to complete the application in two separate parts. The preliminary application will be due on Nov. 16, 2020, and the full application will be due Dec. 14, 2020.

Please contact us at if you have any questions about the program, foundation or internal review process.