a2 Pilot Awards

Frequently Asked Questions

Data Sharing and IP
Human Subjects Research
Funding and Terms
Who will review the applications?

Applications will be reviewed by a multidisciplinary team of experts from each respective AITC. Once AITCs have selected finalists, NIA program officials will conduct final review and approval of awards.

Are all pilot applications subject to a common review process?

Generally, yes. Each AITC is responsible for reviewing and prioritizing the applications that it receives. All AITCs have agreed to use the same application process and apply the same broad evaluation criteria, which can be viewed in our Applicant Resources section. An AITC, at its discretion, may request supplemental materials or an interview as part of its overall evaluation.  

AITCs will assign their reviewers to score each application and provide written comments. Any potential conflicts of interest that might arise during the review process are managed in consistence with the NIH rules for peer review of all types of grants programs.

Does the proposed technology or solution need to include AI, or can it be technology based with the potential for AI involvement?

The solution can be technology based with the potential for leveraging AI in later project phases; however, projects must focus on technology or algorithm development rather than the application of existing technologies without meaningful adaptation. Applications should clearly articulate how the proposed project or technology will move the field forward.

Does the technology solution need to be fully ready for pilot funding at the time of evaluation, be at a minimum viable product stage, or include a prototype?

Minimum viable products or technology solutions with prototypes are within scope. In consultation with the AITC, pilot awardees may access AITC core facilities to conduct usability testing or lab-based assessments of solution transfer in home or care settings.

To what extent are applicants required to include a commercialization plan?

Applicants are not required to include a business plan for how the product will be commercialized. However, an indication of future commercialization potential or clear translational impact, such as development of open resources that support future AI research, is critical.

How much detail should Round 2 applicants provide in the Specific Aims and Research Strategy?

In the Specific Aims and Research Strategy submission, Round 2 applicants are encouraged to provide concrete, succinct project goals that articulate what they plan to accomplish during the award period. Further, applicants should facilitate assessment of project feasibility and scientific merit by clearly outlining their research methods.

Where do I find application feedback on the AcceleratorApp platform?

Application feedback is available on the applicant user’s account at https://aitc.a2pilotawards.ai. Once you are logged into your account, you can select the relevant application and view feedback on the “Activities” tab, which appears near the top of the page and to the left of the “Application Form” tab.

What if I applied to a previous a2 Pilot Awards competition and have more than one application on AcceleratorApp?

Clicking “Applications” on the vertical bar on the left side of the screen will load a list of your applications and the status associated with each. If you are viewing an individual application and wish to return to the full list, you can click "Applications" again or click the "Show my other applications" option that appears near the top right of the window.

Whom should applicants contact to discuss questions about application feedback?

Contact the AITC you applied to. Links to websites for each AITC are listed here.