Image: A completely useless Gantt-chart timeline, from a grant proposal I submitted before my recent epiphany
I’ve written a lot of grant proposals in my 30 years as a scientist, and that means I’ve jumped through a lot of hoops. I can wring the most text from a specification of font size and margins. I can describe a piece of research as simultaneously novel enough to be exciting and yet, at the same time, pedestrian enough to be risk-free. I can justify the crap out of a budget. But one hoop nettles me more than any other hoop held before me: the grant timeline (sometimes called “schedule of proposed activities”).
I can jump through that hoop, of course – I can make a Gantt chart with a veneer of plausibility. But I don’t see the point. Continue reading