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Finding New Funding Opportunities: Penn’s SPIN Plus
May 22, 2007, Volume 53, No. 34

In today’s environment of constrained funding, the opportunity to have a broad awareness of opportunities is more valuable than ever. We would like to remind investigators about a useful research tool, PennERA’s SPIN Plus. This comprehensive web-based service, provides members of the Penn community (faculty, staff and students) direct access to a searchable database of a variety of funding opportunities from federal, state, foundation, and industry sponsors, among others. There are more than 25,000 listings from over 6200 sponsoring organizations, providing new potential resources for Penn investigators across all disciplines.  Included among the disciplinary topics are: Science and Technology; Arts/Humanities; Behavioral/Social Sciences; Education; Mathematics; Computer Science; Management/Commerce; and Law.  

SPIN Plus at-a-glance:

SPIN Plus consists of three modules. Users can take advantage of any or all three of the services offered according to their individual preferences.

SPIN (Sponsored Programs Information Network)—Provides up-to-date information on funding opportunities from current national and international government and private funding sources, including fellowships, research grants, publication support, sabbatical support, curriculum development, and more.

GENIUS (Global Expertise Network for Industry, Universities and Scholars)—A searchable registry and expertise profile system that contains profiles and/or curriculum vitae created and updated by investigators who can optionally choose to make their profiles public; utilizing this search provides assistance in finding potential collaborators.

SMARTS (SPIN Matching and Research Transmittal Service)—An automated daily alerts system that notifies investigators of relevant new programs that match their profiles. SMARTS sends relevant funding opportunities to users via daily e-mail reports (when there are relevant matches) in either Summary or Full Program format.

An Integrated Research Environment

SPIN Plus is part of the PennERA system, a suite of web-based applications that streamline processes and provide more efficient tools for handling pre- and post award administrative tasks related to the sponsored projects of Penn’s academic research community. For more information about PennERA, please visit the PennERA website at www.pennera.upenn.edu/.

Accessing SPIN Plus

(To access SPIN Plus, users need a valid PennKey and PennKey password.) 

Go to www.pennera.upenn.edu.

1. Click the “Logon” link.

2. Authenticate with your PennKey and PennKey password.

3. Click “Continue” after you get the message that you have been successfully authenticated.

4. At the PennERA portal page, click “Find Funding” in the left menu.

If you have any questions, comments, or suggestions, please send an e-mail to pennera@pobox.upenn.edu.


Robin H. Beck, Vice President of Information Systems and Computing

Pamela S. Caudill, Executive Director of the Office of Research Services

Steven J. Fluharty, Vice Provost for Research

Searching SPIN

• To search SPIN, at the PennERA portal page, click “Find Funding” in the left menu, then click “SPIN.”

•  Type a word or phrase into the Search box to search the text of SPIN programs.

Note: Optionally, potential results can be refined by configuring the “Search,” “Results,” and “Match” radio buttons located below the Search box.

• Click “Search” and the Search Results page will appear with the search text highlighted.

• Click the title link of a particular funding opportunity to obtain complete details.

Searching GENIUS

• To search the CV Database, at the PennERA portal page, click “CV Database” in the left menu.

• Type a word into the Search box, or click “Advanced Search” where more criteria can be specified.

• Click on the links of investigators' names on the Search Results page to obtain detailed information on potential individual collaborators.

Setting up SMARTS

• To set up SMARTS, at the PennERA portal page, click “Find Funding” in the left menu, then click “SMARTS.”

• You must select and configure the “Preferences” and “Keywords” sections (which are listed in the left menu under SMARTS). It is recommended that, at least initially, you leave the other sections in their default settings state (more restrictions on search criteria may unnecessarily limit your SMARTS matches).

Note: You must have a valid e-mail address in your PennERA profile to obtain SMARTS funding updates. To check your e-mail address, at the PennERA portal page, click “Profile” in the left menu. If the contact information listed is incorrect, you can modify it by clicking on the “Change” icon (lock), then correct/add your current contact information. Please make sure to save your changes before closing the profile screen by clicking “Save” in the upper left toolbar.

Almanac - May 22, 2007, Volume 53, No. 34