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The Career Development Award (CDA) provides research funding to clinical investigators, who have received their initial faculty appointment, as they work to establish an independent clinical cancer research program. This research must have a patient-oriented focus, including a clinical research study and/or translational research involving human subjects. Proposals with a predominant focus on in vitro or animal studies (even if clinically relevant) are not allowed. Applications in all areas of cancer research are accepted from U.S. and international applicants.

The CDA is a three-year grant totaling $200,000 that supports personnel and/or research expenses, and travel to attend the Conquer Cancer Grants and Awards Ceremony at the ASCO Annual Meeting.


Applicants must meet the following criteria to qualify for a CDA:

  • Be a physician (MD, DO of international equivalent) working in any country.
  • Be in the first to third year of a full-time primary faculty appointment in a clinical department at an academic medical institution at the time of grant submission. Faculty appointment may begin with the entry-level faculty position within the applicant’s institution (i.e., Instructor/Lecturer, Assistant Professor, Assistant Member). 
  • Have a valid, active medical license in the country where the research will be conducted at the time of application.
  • Have completed productive postdoctoral research and demonstrated the ability to undertake independent investigator-initiated clinical research.
  • Be an ASCO Member or have submitted a membership application with the grant application. To apply for membership, or to renew an existing membership, please visit
  • Be able to commit at least 50% of full-time effort in research (applies to total research, not just the proposed project) during the award period.
  • Have a mentor from the sponsoring institution who must provide a letter of support. If the mentor is not an ASCO Member, a supporting letter from an ASCO Member from the sponsoring institution must be included.
  • Eligible physicians are allowed to hold only one grant from Conquer Cancer at a time.
  • Applicants who hold concurrent career development awards (e.g., K23, K08, or any other type of career development award) must notify Conquer Cancer before they submit an application. Past recipients of training fellowships (e.g., Young Investigator Award or an F32 grant) are eligible. Applicants with institutional KL2/K12 grants are eligible to apply, but must notify Conquer Cancer if they are currently funded by such an award. If there are questions regarding eligibility associated with previous and current grants received, applicants are encouraged to send an email to for clarification.
  • Be up-to-date and in compliance with all requirements (e.g., progress reports, final reports, budget summaries, IRB approvals, etc.) of any past grants received from Conquer Cancer.

Funding Available

The number of CDA grants in each funding cycle is not predetermined by Conquer Cancer.  Awards are given based on individual merit and availability of funds.

Areas with Dedicated Funding*

Conquer Cancer has endowed funding for certain areas that allows us to fund grants in these areas year after year. For 2021, dedicated funding is available in, but not limited to, the areas listed below. This list will be updated as new funding is confirmed. Conquer Cancer encourages applications in ALL areas of cancer research from U.S. and international applicants. 

  • CDA in Palliative and Supportive Care in Oncology due September 24, 2020
  • CDA for Diversity, Inclusion and Breast Cancer Disparities due October 29, 2020

All other applicants should refer to the CDA Request for Proposals for all areas (due September 24, 2020).

*As of August 17, 2020.

Application Instructions

All application materials must be in English and must be submitted through the Application Portal. Paper applications or applications sent by e-mail or fax will not be accepted.



The Career Development Awards are supported by:


AbbVie, Inc.
Fleur E. Fairman
The Hayden Family Foundation
Israel Cancer Research Fund
Matania and Daniella Kochavi
Aaron and Barbro Sasson
Generous Supporters of the  Women Who Conquer Cancer
The WWWW Foundation Inc. (QuadW)  and The QuadW Fund of Communities  Foundation of Texas

Supporters of Active CDAs Awarded in Prior Years:

Sarcoma Foundation of America

This list reflects commitments as of May 27, 2020.

This grant receives support that may result in a report to the CMS Open Payments website under the Physician Payments Sunshine Act. The supporting companies are required to report the amount of the grant, the names of physicians who are awarded this grant, and the names of their institutions. This information may appear on the Open Payments websiteFind out more information about the Sunshine Act and CMS Open Payments program.