The Joint Fire Science Program (JFSP) offers Graduate Research Innovation (GRIN) awards yearly to a handful of top-quality graduate students conducting research in wildland fire science. GRIN awards are intended to nurture the next generation of fire, fuels, and natural resource scientists and managers, enhance their professional development, help them become engaged with their community of peers, and equip them to tackle the wildland fire management and policy challenges of today and tomorrow. To earn a GRIN award, master’s and doctoral students are invited to submit succinct five-page proposals for original research that augment already approved and funded thesis or dissertation research, with an emphasis on enhancing the management or policy relevance of the research. For fiscal year 2020 students were asked to address one of the following topic areas:
Fuels management and fire behavior
Changing fire environment
Emissions and air quality
Fire effects and post-fire recovery
Relative impacts of prescribed fire versus wildfire
Human dimensions of fire.
Since inception of the GRIN program in fiscal year 2011, 91 graduate students have received GRIN awards up to $25,000 (a total investment now over $2 million). In fiscal year 2020, 20 proposals were received, of which 12 were selected for funding. A key partner over these nine years has been the Association for Fire Ecology, which has through its Education Committee organized and executed the external peer review component of the selection process.