Current Research

NEW! Request for Proposals: Open Call

The SFPE Foundation invites proposals on any topic germane to one or more of the following priority research areas identified in the SFPE Research Roadmap:

  1. Resilience/Sustainability
  2. Wildland/WUI Fires
  3. Innovative Technology/Materials
For a full description of the gaps identified in each of the above areas, please consult the SFPE Research Roadmap.

We welcome proposals from groups or individuals. Up to $30,000 (USD) may be awarded.

Interested applicants should review the full RFP here. Complete project proposals are due by 5:00 pm, EDT, October 31, 2021. We welcome proposals from groups or individuals. Email Dr. Leslie Marshall, Foundation Manager, with submissions or inquiries at

Climate Change, Public Water Supplies, and the Implications for Fire Protection Systems

It is widely acknowledged that the impacts of climate change include more widespread and prolonged drought conditions, increased risk of flooding, rising temperatures, reduced snowpack, and shifts in weather patterns globally. Many of these changes not only increase the risk of fire events, but also place additional strain on the public water supplies that are an integral part of many fire protection systems. To design for more resilient communities in this context, fire protection engineers need to understand the linkages between climate change, public water supplies, and fire protection systems design. Our focus in this RFP is on the built environment and in-building fires, though we recognize structures may be in areas where wildfires and the wildland-urban-interface are also a consideration for fire systems design.

Development of Fire Engineering Practitioner Tools

In August 2020, the Foundation granted an award to the Fire Research Group of New Zealand for the Development of Fire Engineering Practitioner Tools. The goal of this project is to develop a comprehensive set of tools that may be used by engineers in alignment with the best practices of the 5th edition of the SFPE Handbook of Fire Protection Engineering. This project will include an international survey of current practices, an assessment of available tools, a gaps analysis, and a report that summarizes the findings and priorities for industry tool development.  This survey is currently available and we would invite you to participate. The project is scheduled for completion in early 2021.

Design Fire and Material Performance

The Foundation has initiated a project whose overall goal is to develop and maintain a “living” comprehensive data set that can be used for assessing hazards and creating design fires. Additionally the project aims to develop a framework that may be used by engineers to develop design fires, aligned with the state of the practice as described in the 5th edition of the SFPE Handbook of Fire Protection Engineering and the SFPE Engineering Guide to Performance-Based Fire Protection. The Foundation has selected a team of researchers from Poole Fire Protection, Performance Based Fire Protection Engineering, and the University of Maryland Department of Fire Protection Engineering.  Work on this project has begun and is expected to be completed late 2021.