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Call for Proposals: 2020–2021 RCP Partnerships

The Resilient Communities Project (RCP) is accepting proposals from local government agencies in Minnesota to be an RCP partner for the 2020–2021 academic year. Partners benefit from applied research and technical assistance, provided by students and faculty at the University of Minnesota from a variety of departments and disciplines, to address one or more locally identified projects that advance community resilience to economic, social, environmental, or technological changes. RCP specifically encourages proposals for projects focused on racial inequities, unjust systems, or the COVID-19 pandemic, and that center communities most impacted by these issues. 

The selection process is competitive, and successful applicants must support the effort through dedicated staff time and a local financial contribution

RCP currently has two open requests for proposals—one for a Standard RCP Partnership and one for a special Comprehensive Plan Implementation Partnership. Eligiblity, cost, and application information for each type of partnership are listed below. 

RCP staff are available to help with development of your proposal at any stage—from introducing the RCP program and model to your staff, elected officials, and other stakeholders to helping brainstorm ideas for projects. Contact rcp@umn.edu to get started!

  Open Requests for Proposals

This special call for proposals, issued in partnership with the Metropolitan Council, is intended for Twin Cities metro area communities seeking to collaborate on one to two (1–2) projects that build community resilience and implement elements of a locally adopted 2040 comprehensive plan. The selection process is competitive.

Eligibility: Townships, cities, and counties located in the seven-county Twin Cities metropolitan and within the jurisdiction of the Metropolitan Council are eligible to apply. To be eligible for the partnership, project(s) must implement elements of a locally adopted 2040 comprehensive plan.

Cost: The local financial contribution for selected communities is $2,000 per project (with a per-project match from the Metropolitan Council). In addition, communities must support the partnership through dedicated staff time (see proposal guidelines for details).

Deadline: Proposals must be received by September 15, 2020 at 11:59 PM. Communities selected for participation will be notified by the end of September 2020. 

How to ApplyDownload proposal guidelines for complete application information. Proposals must be submitted as a single PDF file to rcp@umn.edu.

Standard RCP Partnerships are intended for Minnesota local government agencies interested in collaborating on anywhere from one to twenty (1–20) individual projects. Projects should demonstrably advance community resilience to economic, social, environmental, or technological changes. RCP specifically encourages proposals for projects focused on racial inequities, unjust systems, or the COVID-19 pandemic, and that center communities most impacted by these issues. 

Eligibility: Cities, counties, tribal public entities, special districts (e.g. watershed, transit, park, school), and regional government agencies or collaboratives located anywhere in the state of Minnesota are eligible. Nongovernmental organizations are not eligible to apply for RCP partnerships (to learn about assistance from the U of MN available to NGOs, see CURA's Community-Based Research Programs).

Cost: The local financial contribution for the 2020–2021 academic year is $6,000 per project. Communities also must support the partnership through dedicated staff time (see proposal guidelines for details).

Deadline: Proposals are accepted three times per year, with deadlines as follows: 

  • June 15 for work to begin fall-semester academic term (September to December 2020)
  • October 1 for work to begin spring-semester academic term (January to May 2021)
  • February 1 for work to begin summer academic term (May to August 2021)

Communties selected for a partnership will be notified within two weeks.

How to ApplyDownload proposal guidelines for complete application information. Proposals must be submitted as a single PDF file to rcp@umn.edu

Benefits of an RCP Partnership
  • A high rate of return on investment, with hundreds of hours of concentrated student work on your projects

  • Data analysis, case studies, concept plans, and policy recommendations that can energize staff, spark community and staff discussions, and get “stuck” projects moving again

  • Expanded breadth of conversations around projects, issues, and solutions—students can explore and innovate in directions that are sometimes unavailable to partner staff or consultants due to constrained project budgets or political feasibility

  • New opportunities for residents and stakeholders to become involved in locally driven conversations, in collaboration with a world-renowned research university

  • Broader community recognition through a network of students, staff, and faculty serving as informal ambassadors for your organization and community by sharing their experiences through conference presentations, community meetings, job interviews, and informal conversations

  • Access to an interdisciplinary group of faculty with first-hand knowledge of innovative and cutting-edge resiliency research and practice who can help your community clarify, understand, and apply resiliency, sustainability, and livability principles

  • Increased publicity in local, state, regional, and national publications and venues, and a reputation as a forward-thinking organization and resilient community

  • Opportunities to foster next-generation local government professionals by providing interested and engaged students with a new understanding of your community and local government in Minnesota


Application Resources

Contact Mike Greco, RCP Director, at mgreco@umn.edu or 612-625-7501 to learn more or 
discuss how we can customize our program to meet your needs! 

 

This entire RCP process. . .is such a well-oiled machine. It’s a true testament to [RCP’s] vision for connecting education with the real world. Introducing fresh ideas into our innovation efforts has ignited a spark for me and the Innovation Leadership Team. We are grateful to have been a part of this journey. . . It’s been a ride I’ll never forget! 

—Lorraine Brady, IT Project Manager, Carver County

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