01 Jul 2024 - 15 Aug 2024

Cognition Grant Call

The Cognition grant call is the second grant call under the Healthy and Meaningful Longevity funding initiative (also known as National Innovation Challenge (NIC) on Active and Confident Ageing Phase 2). This grant call aims to leverage research to address the:

  1. increasing prevalence of cognitive decline and dementia;
  2. high rate of undiagnosed dementia; as well as
  3. high care needs and caregiver burden for peopling living with Dementia (PLWDs).

Priority Areas / Challenge Statements
(Proposals submitted must address at least 1 of the following 3 challenge statements)

 Priority areas Challenge statements 
Preserving cognitive functions To improve the understanding of modifiable risk factors of dementia in the local context, and leverage technology and behavioural science to develop preventive interventions that are easy to implement in home and community settings that improve awareness, promote lifestyle modifications and improve adherence, to better preserve cognitive function and arrest cognitive decline early among healthy/at-risk seniors compared to current approaches.
Enhancing early detection and diagnosis To evaluate new screening and diagnostic tools in the local context, and adapt these tools suited to Singapore’s demographics. The solution should achieve greater efficiency and accuracy of diagnosis, including clear segmentation of at-risk population. The findings should support the development of an optimised case-finding and diagnosis protocol that can be implemented in specific settings (e.g. community and memory clinics).
Managing cognitive impairment To develop evidence-based interventions and programmes to improve support for persons living with dementia (PLWDs) across the spectrum of cognitive impairment that can be deployed and scaled across community/care settings. These multi-modal interventions should improve the wellbeing of PLWDs by empowering them to care for themselves as much as possible and optimising support for their caregivers.


A Principal Investigator (PI) can submit only one application in response to the challenge statement(s).  However, he/she may be part of the Project Team of other applications.

Applicants applying as Lead PI are required to fulfil the following criteria at the point of application:

  • Holds a primary appointment in a local publicly funded institution and salaried by the institution.
  • The Lead PI should have PhD or MD/MBBS/BDS qualifications and/or other appropriate Postgraduate Qualification (at least a Master’s Degree) in areas relevant to the proposed research).
  • Is an independent PI with demonstrated track record of research, as evidenced by the award of nationally competitive funding (international funding to be considered on a case-by-case basis), substantial publication record in the past 3 years, or PI status in research institutes.
  • Has a laboratory or research program in Singapore.
  • Holds a minimum of 9 months employment (per calendar year) with local Singapore Institution(s). Upon award, the PI must agree to fulfil at least 6 months of residency in Singapore for each calendar year over the duration of the grant award.
  • Must not have outstanding reports from previous BMRC, NMRC grants and other national grants; and
  • For proposals involving patients, the PI should be Singapore Medical Council (SMC) registered; or should be able to demonstrate ability to access patients through SMC registered Co-Is or Collaborators.

Additional Requirements

Applicants are required to:

  • Collaborate with at least one healthcare cluster and at least one community partner in the development and implementation of their project, with the objective of demonstrating PoC and PoV and collecting data to show evidence of possible further scale-up beyond pilot phase. The partners will need to be identified and included in your proposals.
  • Include at least one technical partner if your cluster and community partner do not have the relevant expertise (e.g. expertise in the technology solution that the team is planning to provide).
  • Obtain letters of support from Host Institution’s (HI) senior management for the Full Proposal stage (if applicant is invited to submit Full Proposal). The letter of support should include:
    1. HI’s commitment to provide necessary support, including eventual deployment if proven to be effective, sustainable and viable; and
    2. HI’s verification that project does not duplicate other existing efforts.

There is no restriction on the number of institutions, investigators and collaborators in each Project Team. However, each healthcare cluster, community partner and/or technical partner must be represented by at least a team member i.e. Co-Investigator(s) or Collaborator(s).

Funding Quantum & Duration

The funding quantum is capped at $4mil^ (inclusive of 30% indirect cost) for a period of up to four years.

^SG Not-for-profits (e.g. community care providers) will be eligible for 100% funding of direct costs as well as indirect costs (capped at 30% of supported direct costs). Funding to SMEs and non-SMEs will be capped 50% and 30% of qualifying costs respectively, and will not be eligible for indirect costs.

Review Process

The Cognition Grant Call comprises a 2-stage review process:

  1. Letter of Intent (LOI) stage: The LOIs will be evaluated by the Cognition Review Panel (RP) that is made up of local and international members with multidisciplinary backgrounds. Shortlisted applicants will be invited to submit full proposals.
  2. Full Proposal (FP) stage: Full proposals submitted will be evaluated by Cognition RP. Applicants will submit a rebuttal to address the issues raised by the RP, and will subsequently be required to attend an interview with the RP. The number of awards given out for the grant call will depend on the quality of the proposals and the amount of funding available.

Evaluation Criteria

Selection of successful proposals would be based on the following evaluation criteria:

Component  Criteria for Shortlisting/ Evaluation 
  • Expertise and Ability of the Lead Principal Investigator and the team to carry out the proposed research project
Scientific Merit
  • Address an important problem to yield significant results
  • Appropriate study design and sound basis for the intervention
  • Robust methodology and analyses
  • Advances scientific knowledge, technical capability and the standard of care
Potential impact and outcomes
  • Impact in addressing the challenge statement 
  • Cost-effectiveness of the proposed solution compared to existing solutions
  • Proposed outcomes/ KPIs
  • Scalability and sustainability of proposed solution
  • Innovative features of the proposed solution, and why they are deemed innovative
  • Project feasibility and adoption in the local context
  • Reasonableness of funding request


It is mandatory for all Letter of Intent (LOI) applications to be submitted and endorsed by Director of Research (DOR) online via IGMS by 15 August 2024, 5pm. We will not entertain any late submissions or submissions from individual applicants without endorsement from the Host Institution.

Please download the Guide and Application Form for more information.