Research to Prevent Blindness

RPB / LCIF Low Vision Research Award

Contact Us

If you have any questions regarding the RPB Grants Program, please contact RPB's Director of Grants Administration, Pattie Moran, at 646-892-9566 or

The RPB / Lions Clubs International Foundation Low Vision Research Award (LVRA)* focuses on the visual system that is damaged, and seeks greater understanding of how the visual system and brain respond to severe and chronic visual loss by answering such questions as:  What is the nature of the visual impairment; what aspects of visual function are affected?  How is the degraded input processed?  What are the adaptive strategies in the visual pathway in response to visual impairment?  How does the brain re-organize itself with visual damage?  What novel environmental adaptations and technologies can be used to help affected individuals overcome the visual impairments?  How, for instance, can the visibility of objects be enhanced? 

The LVRA, a $300,000 award payable in two installments of $150,000 a payment with the second payment contingent upon approval of a 14-month substantive progress report, is intended to provide seed funding for high-risk / high-gain, innovative, cutting-edge research which demonstrates out-of-the-box thinking.  We strongly encourage interdisciplinary collaboration within the scope of the proposed research.  The LVRA will not fund evaluations of existing interventions and educational programs; epidemiological or demographic studies; or Phase III trials.  Intervention development, proof of concept studies, and feasibility studies are eligible assuming the research proposal addresses one or more of the questions noted above.  Phase II trials are eligible if the applicant clearly demonstrates that the LVRA budget covers the cost of the Phase II trial; or if not, the applicant needs to explain how he/she proposes to secure additional funding.  The proposed research cannot be funded – previously or currently – by the NEI, NIH, or other federal funders, although modest initial funding by private funders / foundations is acceptable.  The purpose of this award is to serve as a catalyst to specific lines / kinds of research not currently happening.

This award is available to researchers from any institution of higher education in the U.S. currently holding a primary academic position as Assistant Professor through full Professor.  Candidates must provide not less than 5% effort for the proposed research.  Awardees will be required to expend the award within three (3) years if granted the full $300,000.  Otherwise, the awardee is required to expend the initial $150,000 award payment within two (2) years.

The spring cycle application deadline for the Low Vision Research Award is January 10, with nomination forms due no later than December 15.  Applications received without a prior nomination form will not be accepted. This award is not available during the fall cycle. (If the nomination or application deadline falls on a weekend or holiday, please consider the deadline to be the following business day.)

* Award availability contingent on partnership funding. 

The nomination and application forms for this award will be available September / October 2024. 






Get our email updates filled with the latest news from our researchers about preventing vision loss, treating eye disease and even restoring sight. Unsubscribe at any time. Under our privacy policy, we'll never share your contact information with a third party.