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Tutorial 25:

What format should I use for biographical sketches and resumes?

Tutorial 25 Title Slide


Information regarding personnel working on the proposed project is NOT part of the project narrative but is submitted separately in grants.gov in the Research and Related (R&R) Senior/Key Person section. Be sure to review the document that DOE provides entitled “Instructions for Completing a DOE SBIR/STTR Phase I Grant Application” to see where the R&R Senior/Key Person information is input and uploaded. It is also recommended that you review the specific contact and academic information that you are required to input for each person so that you have this information handy as you begin to work on this section.


As you input information into grants.gov it is important to differentiate between the Principal Investigator and Key Persons. Keep in mind that the Principal Investigator or PI is the individual designated by the applicant to direct the project and that he or she must be knowledgeable in all technical aspects of the application and be capable of leading the research effort. Select the PI carefully. A senior/key person is any individual who contributes in a substantive measureable way to the scientific/technical development or execution of the project, whether or not a salary is proposed for this person. You may wonder how could an individual be a key person and not be charging any time to the proposal. In Tutorial 27 we introduced the concept of Other Significant Contributor or OSC to describe such individuals. They may be a mentor or advisor to the applicant who has committed to contribute to the scientific development or execution of the project, but are not committing any specified measurable effort (in person months) to the project.

Tutorial 25 Slide 1


The PI’s biographical sketch needs to be input first. It is recommended, but not required that you input the biographical sketches for senior/key personnel alphabetically, by last name. However, I would personally present the resumes of the most impressive members of the team first, as the biographical sketches will be read in the sequence input into the grants.gov system.


As you know – the capabilities of the proposed team to conduct the research is a key factor considered in the evaluation process. Therefore, as you are assembling your team be mindful of the fact that the relevant research skills of the proposed team are important and work to supplement your team appropriately in order to develop the strongest team possible. A team can be strengthened through contingent hires, as well as the use of subcontractors and consultants from universities, industry, and Federally Funded Research and Development Centers.


The biographical sketch developed for each person may be no more than two pages in length and must contain information related to Education and Training, Research and Professional Experience, Publications, Patents, Copyrights and Software Systems developed, and Synergistic activities. A template is provided in the tools section of this Tutorial that you can use as a starting point. When requesting resumes of subcontractors and consultants we provide them with a template and then ask them to add their logo to the resume as well as a simple statement at the end of the biographical sketch indicating that they are available to work on the project. This, however, is not required by DOE.

Quiz: Tutorial 25 - What format should I use for biographical sketches and resumes?

  1. 1

    In the R&R Senior/Key Person section, whose biographical sketch should be input first?

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  2. 2

    Which of the following roles, by definition does not commit any specified measureable effort to an SBIR project?

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  3. 3

    What is the maximum length of the biographical sketches that are input into the R&R Senior/Key Person section?

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  4. 4

    Which of the following is NOT a way to strengthen the profile of your team?

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