We are preparing a grant proposal, which is planned to be submitted in about a year. A part of the proposal is an critical analysis on the state-of-the-art in a particular field. From there we identify some research topics that seem important and promising on which to the best of our knowledge no other people published on. Around these fields we build the rest of the proposal.

We were thinking about the idea of using the text of the literature analysis and the identification of these new topics, to write a positioning paper for a conference or journal.

The main question is: What are the pros and cons of doing so?

We are also interested in your feedback about the timing of doing so? Your recommendations on the type of venue of doing so (important journal, or small workshop conference, research group website)? And maybe even some general recommendations related to this topic, that we did not thing about.

Is it a good idea to publish it before submitting the grant request (such that we can cite it in the proposal)? Or is it better to wait after one knows if the proposal is accepted or rejected? We understand that by publishing, other people could also get inspired to work on it, or even ask funding on it. We don't worry to much about that, but maybe we should. Are there other risks? For example if the proposal gets rejected how many years do we have before the ideas get to old to receive funding in revised/recycled form?

1 Answer 1


Publishing a position paper can possibly be useful to get feedback about the idea and refine it for grant submission, particularly if you're publishing it at a conference.

I personally don't worry too much about getting scooped either, but I would likely only do it if it lays out a space that is far bigger than can be tackled in a single grant proposal. Sure, someone else might get inspired - I think that's a good outcome! - but it isn't terribly likely that they're going to go work on the same corner of the probelm that you are.

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