Government Grants

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Government Grants

Postby dgdave » Sun Oct 03, 2010 8:27 pm

Anyone ever get a small business grant through the government? How does that work and how was the process?
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Re: Government Grants

Postby Solty » Mon Oct 04, 2010 5:14 pm

i spoke to the SBA before and unless you're going in and asking for me then 25k.....then you are gonna get denied...
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Re: Government Grants

Postby dgdave » Tue Oct 05, 2010 7:56 am

I'll take a 25K grant :)
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Re: Government Grants

Postby JHern » Mon Oct 25, 2010 11:02 pm

Every federal agency is completely different. Some of them are very open, very fair, and have a spectacular process, track record, and proven achievement and high impact/effectiveness per dollar spent. Others are awful, you can't get in the door without very good very very high level connections. In bureaucratic trench warfare, agencies that have the best processes and operations get the smallest funding increases in the annual budget battles (hence extremely competitive to win grants), while those agencies with the worst behavior, biggest waste, and fraudulent practices get the largest increases in the federal budget (impossible to win grants unless you know the secret handshake). This is partly because those well-connected folks who get money from the crap agencies are actively involved in campaign funding schemes and buying off key politicians, and all they have to do is divert 1% of their profits from bilking the government to the lobbyists on K street who will fight for their cause when the budget is in play. It is a marvelously sound investment (~100X return!).

NSF is an example of the best, DOD is an example of the worst. There is a whole spectrum in between. I don't know what the SBA is like, but I'd love to hear about your experiences with them after trying!
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Re: Government Grants

Postby peppermack » Tue Oct 26, 2010 4:31 pm

Keep in mind that only 10-20% approval rate for Gov't grants. My wife is a Professor and of course their lives revolve around getting grants. My best advice is to find ones that have been approved before and see if you can get a copy of them. The people that review them see a thousand or more of them so you want to be in the form of the ones that they approved. It is a serious bureaucratic system and if it is not in the template and wording that they want you have no chance. Have a lot of people read it and review it for content and clarity. You need to stand out to have a chance of getting it funded.
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Re: Government Grants

Postby JHern » Tue Oct 26, 2010 9:16 pm

I also review grant proposals for the US gov't, and I can give some tips. The most important thing you can do is get to the point. Don't waste time with a long introduction, just say outright what it is you want to do. Reviewers are always busy people, and don't have time to sort through a long story. Also, make it a very nice presentation, no grammatical or spelling errors, be concise, and neat. Summarize your points with nice figures, if possible. Also, be sure to emphasize the impacts on your community.
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