Research Grants


DSR provides support grants for research in all areas of science, engineering, environmental design and management with the aim of promoting productive research and creative scholarship. This support includes (i) monthly compensation for faculty members, students and technicians contributing towards the project, (ii) per diem support to attend internationally recognized conferences to present papers, (iii) purchasing of equipment, (iv) reimbursement of costs related to stationery and miscellaneous items and (v) sabbatical and summer scholar program support.

All proposals are evaluated by two or three international reviewers selected by the University Research Committee from well-known experts in the fields of the projects. The final decision to accept or reject the proposal is based upon the reviewers’ evaluation of the proposal. At any one time, a faculty member can be part of a maximum of three active projects recommended by the University Research Committee to be eligible for compensation (i.e. two as a principal investigator and one as a co-investigator)


Small/Basic Research Grant [Guidelines] [Template]

Under the “Small Research Grant” the faculty member and researcher can carry out basic and exploratory research with the all possible facilities provided by the University for a Maximum Budget of SR. 100,000 and duration not exceeding 18 months per project. Research proposals are invited from University faculty and researchers for submission to the University Research Office in all areas of research relevant to KFUPM, with preference given to the research priority areas of KFUPM which include, but are not limited (1) Energy (Fossil Fuel & Renewable), (2) Oil & Gas, (3) Refining & Petrochemical, (4) Water & Environment, (5) Nanotechnology, (6) Advanced Materials, (7) Corrosion and (8) Information Technology. Faculty and researchers can apply for this grant once a year usually at the beginning of first academic semester. The main objective is to encourage more faculty members and researchers, to be involved in the proposal preparation and submission process and to support their innovative research ideas for advancement of knowledge and for setting the stage for technology development and to submit proposals of limited budget and duration but with acceptable outcome. In addition, it is meant to promote the idea of involving graduate students and research assistant in research projects. All proposals submitted through this grant are evaluated relative to each other and ranked accordingly based on the combined total scores from the external reviewers and the research committee.

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Direct Funded Research Grant [Guidelines]  [Template]

The main research grant given by KFUPM with flexible budget and duration. Its purpose is to encourage faculty for research and facility development in existing and emerging areas of excellence. With a budget limited to SR 300,000 and a duration not exceeding 36 months, this grant is directed towards specific research areas of interest to KFUPM faculty. Faculty and researchers can apply for this grant only once year (usually at the beginning of fall semester). The review process of these grants is rigorous, and internationally renowned scholars are invited to review the proposals for their suitability of funding.

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Research Groups Grant [Guidelines]  [Template]  [Endorsement Form]

Promoting focused research that will lead to excellence is the main goal of this fairly new research funding scheme initiated by KFUPM. This funding scheme is devised to encourage the formation of teams of researchers that will focus on a specific field. Research can be directed to a particular priority area by establishing focused research groups composed of a team of specialized researchers with established track records. It is expected that the research groups will eventually achieve excellence and global leadership. Some of the benefits of the Research Groups include: (1) Eligibility to hire a post-doctoral fellow (subject to current University hiring regulation and rules), (2) Recruitment of new faculty members in the group area of specialization, (3) Support for the establishment of laboratories and (4) An additional 15% of the approved project’s budget is reserved for the group’s main account to underwrite scientific research activity such as collaborative visits, supporting students, organizing workshops, etc.

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Book writing/translation Grants [Guidelines]  [Template]

As part of the Internal Research Grant and its policy of providing support and encouragement to faculty for promoting scholarly work, the University provides moral and financial support for the authoring, and translation of books. Book writing activities involve (1) Authoring a scholarly monograph or a textbook which is directed towards an audience of peers or students (graduate or undergraduate) or towards the general public in both English and Arabic languages; (2) Translating relevant books or textbooks into Arabic. Faculty members authoring, and translating books which are published by reputed publishers can apply for an honorarium after the final version of the book is published. The books must carry a clear affiliation to KFUPM either on the cover page or in some other appropriate place clearly visible to readers and also an acknowledgement of support to KFUPM, either in general or with respect to the specific project if applicable.

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Sabbatical/Release time [Guidelines]  [Regular Sabbatical]  [Industrial Sabbatical]  [Release Time]

The main objective of sabbatical leave is to provide KFUPM faculty with a changing atmosphere in order to pursue scholarly activities and to furnish a better environment for remarkable achievements. Scholarly activities that are considered for sabbatical leave may include pursuing and extending some ongoing research, initiating research in new and diverse areas, working in industry in the area of the research and development, gaining research-oriented experience or creating an engineering design or product and finally writing a research-oriented book or monograph. Saudi faculty are eligible to apply for a one-year sabbatical leave after serving the University for a minimum period of 5 years or after the lapse of a 5-year period from a previous sabbatical leave. Non-Saudi faculty members who have served the University for a minimum period of 5 years may also be granted a one-semester release time.

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Societal Studies Grant [Guidelines]  [Template]

Societal grants are similar to internally funded grants, but are designed to support research in fields other than science, engineering and business. The grant funds research related to topics of relevance to the Saudi society and is designed to enhance the interaction of KFUPM with the society and directly contribute to meeting societal needs.

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Undergraduate Students Research Grant [Guidelines]  [Template]

The KFUPM Undergraduate Students Research Grants (USRG) flexibly and responsibly provides research support to undergraduate students with outstanding credentials who are interested in pursuing quality research work. The Grant intends to stimulate interest in research and innovation among KFUPM undergraduate students, and inspire many of them to become future research leaders. Innovation is the cornerstone of future economic growth. An Annual Undergraduate Research Contest will stimulate interest in the program and promote a campus-wide spirit for undergraduate research. Full-time KFUPM undergraduate honor students, with innovative research project plans, supported by a faculty member or full-time researcher, are eligible to apply for the USRG, which could provide up to 12 months of research funding with a maximum of two deserving students participating in a single project.

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Startup Research Grant [Guidelines]  [Template]

The Startup Research Grant is a new internal grant intended to meet the needs of a specific category of faculty and researchers at KFUPM. It is suitable for those who are new to the University but do not fall into the junior faculty track or those who have been with the University for some time but have been relatively little involved/active in research. The Startup Research Grant is intended to facilitate a smooth transition for new faculty from their previous research activities to the more vigorous research environment at KFUPM.

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Bridge Fund Grant[Guidelines]  [Template]

In order to encourage high-quality research at KFUPM through DSR-funded research grants, a new Bridge Fund Grant has been introduced. The grant is based on the performance of a faculty member or a researcher in a previously completed project or a currently ending project. It provides an opportunity for well-performing projects to continue with few formalities. Such an initiative is meant to encourage more faculty members to execute their projects to the highest possible standards and assure maximum quality deliverables, as the Bridge Fund Grant will be granted on the basis of outstanding performance in a previously granted DSR project that is likely to lead to new exceptional outcomes in the same area if pursued further.

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Dhahran Techno-Valley Research Collaboration Grant [Guidelines]  [Template]

Dhahran Techno Valley Research Collaboration Grant (DTV Grant) is a joint grant whose goal is to foster research collaboration with tenants of the DTV. The aim of this grant is to promote basic and exploratory research in an area of interest to both KFUPM and DTV that is anticipated to lead to more applied research that could eventually result in developing innovative and novel solutions, products or processes. A major goal of this grant is to reduce the high risk associated with basic and exploratory research, which is typically too high for private companies to want to bear independently, by having the university fund the project partially in its initial stages through this grant. The grant will be open to KFUPM faculty members and researchers who share research interests with the companies in the DTV. Projects under this grant must have representatives as research project team members from both KFUPM and the DTV Company. A DTV Company researcher can only be a co-investigator, while the Principal Investigator must be a KFUPM Researcher.

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International Research Collaboration (IRC) Grant [Guidelines]  [Template]

In order to maintain the momentum created through these university-level collaboration agreements (such as MIT, Stanford, Georgia Tech, Caltech and University of California, Berkeley) and facilitate a stronger involvement of KFUPM researchers in international research networks and programs, the International Research Collaboration (IRC) grant is created. The IRC grant will support the development of existing international collaborations within the well-established research priorities of the University’s Strategic Research Plan. The grant is intended to support large collaboration projects aiming to advance knowledge and develop technologies and to complement existing grants and support programs. The grant may also support the establishment of new international collaborations in the future provided that the collaboration is demonstrated to be able to fulfill its potential. Projects funded through this grant will have a maximum duration of four years, and the funding amount per project limited to SAR 2,000,000.

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International Summer Scholarly Program (ISSP) [Guidelines]  [Template] [Final Report]

The International Summer Scholarly Program is available to all professorial ranks of faculty members. It can extend for a period of one or two months during summer, but should not conflict with the reporting or final exam periods or with any other summer assignment. The program aims to expose faculty members to new experiences, new ideas and new opportunities for international academic and/or research collaboration. The selected applicant will be entitled to the following benefits (1) Round-trip air ticket to the host institution; and (2) Monthly salary for the selected period. The program is competitive and the applicant is expected to show clear evidence of academic and/or research collaboration with the host institution, which must be highly reputed and different from the one the applicant graduated from.

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Major Research Equipment Grant [Guidelines]  [Template] [Assessment Form]

The Major Research Equipment Grant (MREG) was introduced at KFUPM to support major research equipment submissions from faculty and established researchers involved in active research programs. The MREG is used exclusively for purchasing equipment or establishing a research facility for University faculty and researchers. The aim of the scheme is to encourage, support and facilitate collaboration among researchers in acquiring equipment that could be used by numerous parties. The MREG funds will be used to purchase equipment exceeding SR 100,000.

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Conference Attendance [Guidelines]  [NOC Journal]  [NOC Conference]

The University encourages its faculty members to participate in “high-quality” conferences and professional meetings sponsored by leading professional societies and held both within the Kingdom and abroad. Attending such conferences or meetings permits a free exchange of new ideas, concepts and developments, and enables the faculty member to develop and execute his own research, and the University to be recognized as a center of academic excellence.

A faculty member may apply for a travel grant to attend a conference provided he meets any of these criteria: (i) attending a conference to present a paper, (ii) attending a conference on the basis of a published paper, (iii) attending a conference based on invitation, and (iv) attending a conference based on an approved research or book writing project.

The application along with all supporting documents should be submitted to the chairman of the academic department, who will forward it to the University Research Committee (URC) to seek approval to attend the conference. The application should be made well in advance, at least two months prior to the date of the conference and at least two weeks prior to the start of final exams in the Second Semester. In addition, to be entitled to receive financial support, the applicant should acknowledge KFUPM for assistance with facilities and finance provided for conducting his research.

The support for attending conferences ordinarily covers per diem (including the time required for travel) and conference registration fee. Faculty can be supported to attend as many as three conferences a year. In some instances, a faculty member might receive round trip tickets to attend the conference. Tickets are usually issued through Saudi Arabian Airlines (SAUDIA).

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Research Group Establishement [Guidelines]  [Template]  [Stretegic Plan]  [Self Assessment]

This funding scheme is devised to encourage building teams of researchers that will focus on a specific field of nowledge. The funds can be utilized for compensating faculty, and support staff, for attracting graduate students and post-doctoral fellows (subject to current University iring regulation and rules) and for establishing and developing research capabilities. In addition, the funds can be utilized for building research collaboration, attending conferences, inviting experts, and writing books and manuscripts.



Proof of Concept Grant [Guidelines]  [Template]

The objective of the program is to support KFUPM researchers and inventors in advancing the development of their research outcome for commercialization opportunities. Currently, a significant obstacle to the development and transfer of KFUPM technologies is the lack of dedicated funding for the proof-of-concept and validation studies needed to demonstrate commercial potential. To overcome this barrier, this POC grant will provide funding and business development support to help KFUPM community validate their nascent technologies and identify potential industry partners to advance these technologies to the market place.

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