Dear Colleague Letter: Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) Supplemental Funding

Monday, October 22, 2018

NSF DCL 19-014

October 18, 2018

Dear Colleagues:

The NSF Directorate for Computer and Information Science and Engineering (CISE) invites grantees with active CISE awards to submit requests for Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) Supplemental funding, following the guidelines in the NSF REU program solicitation [see Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU): Sites and Supplements; NSF 13-542]. To be eligible for this opportunity, a student must be a US citizen or permanent resident of the US. The duration for new requests is typically one year. The proposed start date for a supplemental funding request must be after the conclusion of all existing REU supplements on the corresponding active CISE award. Priority will be given to supplemental funding requests submitted before March 30, 2019; the potential for funding requests after this date will be limited. If requests for REU supplemental support exceed funds available in CISE, requests will be considered in the order received. REU supplemental funds can be used at any time during the year.

Annual and final project reports for an award that receives an REU supplement should provide brief descriptions of activities, impacts, and outcomes (including the number of support-months for each student) associated with the REU supplemental support.

REU stipend support helps encourage talented students to pursue research-based careers, while providing meaningful research experiences. The participation of students from groups underrepresented in computing - underrepresented minorities, women, and persons with disabilities - is strongly encouraged. To this end, principal investigators (PIs) submitting REU supplemental funding requests are directed to the CISE Dear Colleague Letter encouraging meaningful actions in support of broadening participation in computing [see Pursuing Meaningful Actions in Support of Broadening Participation in Computing (BPC); NSF 17-110]. In addition, CISE encourages submission of REU supplemental funding requests that specifically afford US veterans an opportunity to engage in meaningful research experiences.

Nature of support

For single-investigator projects, CISE REU supplemental funding requests should be for no more than two students for one year. Support for additional students can be requested as part of these supplemental funding requests if these students are from underrepresented groups, and the selected students are identified in the supplemental funding request. Research teams funded through multi-investigator projects may request support for a larger number of students, commensurate with the size and nature of their projects, with proportional additional support for students from underrepresented groups. Requests for larger numbers of students should be accompanied by detailed justifications.

CISE provides up to $8,000 per student per year through an REU supplement (this amount usually covers the student's stipend, but a small portion of the funds can be used for other related purposes, e.g., student travel to a conference). As described in the REU program solicitation (NSF 13-542), indirect costs (F&A) are not allowed on participant support costs in REU Site or Supplement budgets.

CISE REU supplemental funding requests must describe results of any previous such support, such as students supported, papers published, and student placements. Other factors influencing supplemental funding decisions include the number of REU requests received by CISE programs, and in the case of multiple submissions by a single PI, the ability to provide adequate mentoring.

How to apply

PIs are encouraged to refer to the REU program solicitation (NSF 13-542) for detailed information concerning submission requirements. As described above and in that solicitation, each REU supplemental funding request should include the following information in the "Summary of Proposed Work" section, except as noted below:

  • A description of the research to be performed by the student, and how the student will benefit from the overall REU experience;
  • The PI's prior experience, if any, supervising REU students, including papers published and student placements, along with the status of prior REU supplements received on the corresponding award;
  • A description of the mentoring that the student will receive as part of the REU experience;
  • The relationship of the REU supplemental funding request to the original award;
  • Information about how students, including from underrepresented groups, will be recruited;
  • A statement acknowledging that all students to be funded will be US citizens or permanent residents; and
  • Specifics about the REU request - duration, stipend rates, period of REU experience, and travel justification (if any) (include in the "Justification for Supplement" section).

Since a supplemental funding request is handled by the cognizant NSF program officer that oversees the active award for which the request is submitted, grantees should contact the cognizant NSF program officers of their awards if they have questions or need additional information.


Jim Kurose
Assistant Director
Directorate for Computer and Information Science and Engineering (CISE)
National Science Foundation

Computer and Information Science and Engineering (CISE) Research Initiation Initiative (CRII)

Monday, April 2, 2018

Program Solicitation
NSF 18-554

Synopsis of Program

With the goal of encouraging research independence immediately upon obtaining one's first academic position after receipt of the PhD, the Directorate for Computer and Information Science and Engineering (CISE) will award grants to initiate the course of one's independent research. Understanding the critical role of establishing that independence early in one's career, it is expected that funds will be used to support untenured faculty or research scientists (or equivalent) in their first three years in a primary academic position after the PhD, but not more than a total of five years after completion of their PhD. One may not yet have received any other grants or contracts in the Principal Investigator (PI) role from any department, agency, or institution of the federal government, including from the CAREER program or any other program, post-PhD, regardless of the size of the grant or contract, with certain exceptions noted below. Serving as co-PI, Senior Personnel, Postdoctoral Fellow, or other Fellow does not count against this eligibility rule. Grants, contracts, or gifts from private companies or foundations; state, local, or tribal governments; or universities do not count against this eligibility rule.

It is expected that these funds will allow the new CISE Research Initiation Initiative PI to support one or more graduate students for up to two years. Faculty at undergraduate and two-year institutions may use funds to support undergraduate students, and may use the additional RUI designation (which requires inclusion of a RUI Impact Statement) -- see for additional information. In addition, submissions from all institutions may use funds for postdoctoral scholars, travel, and/or research equipment.


Award Information

Anticipated Type of Award: Standard Grant

Estimated Number of Awards: 55 to 60

CISE expects to make 55 to 60 awards each year.

Anticipated Funding Amount: $10,000,000

CISE expects the total funding to be up to $10,000,000 each year, subject to the availability of funds.

Each award will be up to $175,000 for up to 24 months.


Eligibility Information

Who May Submit Proposals:

Proposals may only be submitted by the following:

  • Institutions of Higher Education (IHEs) - Two- and four-year IHEs (including community colleges) accredited in, and having a campus located in the US, acting on behalf of their faculty members. Special Instructions for International Branch Campuses of US IHEs: If the proposal includes funding to be provided to an international branch campus of a US institution of higher education (including through use of subawards and consultant arrangements), the proposer must explain the benefit(s) to the project of performance at the international branch campus, and justify why the project activities cannot be performed at the US campus.
  • Non-profit, non-academic organizations: Independent museums, observatories, research labs, professional societies and similar organizations in the U.S. associated with educational or research activities.

Who May Serve as PI:

Only one principal investigator per proposal is allowed; co-principal investigators and senior personnel are not permitted. Please see Additional Eligibility Information below for more information on who is eligible.

Limit on Number of Proposals per Organization:

There are no restrictions or limits.

Limit on Number of Proposals per PI or Co-PI:

A PI may submit one proposal per annual competition.

In addition, a Principal Investigator may not participate in more than two CRII competitions. Proposals that are not reviewed (i.e., are withdrawn before review or are returned without review) do not count toward the two-competition limit.

The PI may not submit a CRII proposal in the same calendar year in which he/she submits a CAREER proposal. A CRII proposal submitted in the same calendar year as a CAREER proposal by the same PI will be returned without review.


Proposal Preparation and Submission Instructions

A. Proposal Preparation Instructions

  • Letters of Intent: Not required
  • Preliminary Proposal Submission: Not required

B. Budgetary Information

  • Cost Sharing Requirements:

    Inclusion of voluntary committed cost sharing is prohibited.

  • Indirect Cost (F&A) Limitations:

    Not Applicable

  • Other Budgetary Limitations:

    Other budgetary limitations apply. Please see the full text of this solicitation for further information.

C. Due Dates

  • Full Proposal Deadline(s) (due by 5 p.m. submitter's local time):

         August 08, 2018

         August 14, 2019

         Second Wednesday in August, Annually Thereafter

Dear Colleague Letter: Enabling New Collaborations Between Computer and Information Science & Engineering (CISE) and Social, Behavioral and Economic Sciences (SBE) Research Communities

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

NSF 17-019

With this DCL, the National Science Foundation (NSF) is announcing its intention to build upon the success of previous EArly-Concept Grants for Exploratory Research (EAGERs) in the areas supported by the Secure and Trustworthy Cyberspace (SaTC) program (see NSF 16-580) and to encourage the submission of additional EAGER proposals that foster novel interdisciplinary research carried out in new collaborations between one or more Computer and Information Science and Engineering (CISE) researchers and one or more Social, Behavioral and Economic Sciences (SBE) researchers. Note that this DCL is focused on new collaborations; research teams with a history of collaborating together should instead submit directly to the SaTC solicitation, pursuant to the proposal preparation guidelines specified therein.

Many scientific and practical challenges of security, privacy, and trust have sociotechnical dimensions, and thus it is important to encourage interdisciplinary collaborations among researchers from the disciplines represented in NSF’s CISE and SBE directorates, and on topics that draw on the strengths of each researcher.

Below are some examples of the types of topics that might benefit from collaborations between CISE and SBE researchers under such an EAGER project. This list is by no means intended to be directive or complete. Many important problems demand strong research reflecting integrative perspectives.

  • Ethical, political, legal, cultural, or societal dimensions of security and privacy technologies and their impacts.
  • Security/privacy in the context of social media, including topics such as data aggregation and algorithmic filtering.
  • Addressing online behavioral risks to security, safety, and/or privacy, including trolling, spamming and cyberbullying.
  • Interaction design research on how to accommodate individual and/or collective privacy values and concerns.
  • Inclusive security or privacy mechanisms that adapt to the needs and abilities of underrepresented or disabled individuals or groups.
  • Research on education, training, and awareness around security and privacy for both users and developers of secure and trustworthy systems.
  • Understanding and supporting responses to cyberattacks, ranging from the individual to national scales.
  • Security/privacy at the level of families, groups, communities, and other understudied levels/units of analysis.
  • Organizational strategies, investments, or governance effects on security/privacy, and approaches for improvement.
  • Studies of economic dimensions of security or privacy decision-making, including cost-benefit analyses, incentive structures, and/or mechanism design.
  • Methods for modeling intentions and/or behaviors relevant to cybersecurity. For example, methods could include social network analysis, crowdsourcing, and inter-organizational policy analysis, and combinations thereof.

Proposals submitted pursuant to this DCL must include one or more PIs from the fields supported by the Computer and Information Science and Engineering (CISE) directorate, and one or more PIs from those areas supported by the Social, Behavioral, and Economic sciences (SBE) directorate. Proposals should describe how intellectual merit and broader impacts will benefit from the contribution from each discipline. Proposals where one side is mainly in service of the other are not appropriate. Ideally, the research will be interdependent and integrated-sharing visions, models, methods, or discoveries. Such integration may require extra effort in leadership, regular communication, and cross-training. Proposals must also describe how the collaboration will work in the planning, research, and dissemination stages.

Two rounds of submissions are anticipated, with approximately five EAGERs awarded during each round, subject to the availability of funds. The anticipated deadlines for submission of EAGER proposals are December 1, 2016, and April 1, 2017, for the first and second rounds, respectively.

Submission of EAGER proposals will be via Fastlane or EAGER submissions should follow the NSF's Proposal and Award Policies and Procedures Guide (PAPPG). As noted in the PAPPG, EAGER is a funding mechanism for supporting exploratory work in its early stages on untested, but potentially transformative, research ideas or approaches. Thus, proposals must talk about why they are appropriate for an EAGER (for instance, proposals that respond to this solicitation may be “high-risk, high-reward” through involving radically different approaches, applying new expertise, or engaging novel disciplinary or interdisciplinary perspectives).

An investigator may be included in only one submission (across both rounds) pursuant to this DCL; if more than one is submitted, only the first one submitted will be considered. Submission pursuant to the previous CISE/SBE SaTC EAGER DCLs does not preclude submission in response to this DCL.

For further information, please contact the following SaTC program directors: Drs. Sara Kiesler (skiesler [at] nsf [dot] gov), Nan Zhang (nanzhang [at] nsf [dot] gov), and Dan Cosley (dcosley [at] nsf [dot] gov).


Jim Kurose
Assistant Director, CISE

Fay Lomax Cook
Assistant Director, SBE

NSF Dear Colleague Letter: Supporting Fundamental Research in Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS)

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

August 8, 2016

Dear Colleagues,

With this Dear Colleague Letter (DCL), the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) Directorates for Computer and Information Science and Engineering (CISE) and Engineering (ENG) announce their intention to support, foster, and accelerate fundamental research that advances the positive use of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) to save lives, increase safety and efficiency, and enable more effective science and engineering research. These research investments will be made through existing CISE and ENG core and crosscutting research programs.

NSF-funded advancements are enabling a wide variety of beneficial applications of UAS in areas such as monitoring and inspection of physical infrastructure, prevention of airport bird strikes, smart emergency/disaster response, natural gas leak detection, agriculture support, personal services, and observation and study of weather phenomena including severe storms. These advances are made possible through fundamental investments in theoretical principles of UAS, including intelligent sensing, perception, and control; estimation; communications; collaboration and teaming; UAS adaptation and learning; human-UAS interaction; and safety, security, and privacy of UAS. These novel fundamental approaches enable increased understanding of how to intelligently and effectively design, control, and apply UAS to beneficial applications.

NSF welcomes proposals that accelerate fundamental technological advances in UAS; these proposals should be submitted to existing CISE and ENG core and crosscutting research programs, following all proposal preparation instructions specified in the corresponding program announcements and solicitations. All proposals must meet the requirements of NSF’s Grant Proposal Guide (GPG), along with any program- or solicitation-specific proposal preparation instructions and review criteria. Proposals must be synergistic with the goals of the programs to which they are submitted.

For further information, interested PIs may contact:

  • Dr. Reid Simmons, CISE/IIS, Program Director, at resimmon [at] nsf [dot] gov; and
  • Dr. Jordan M. Berg, ENG/CMMI, Program Director, at jberg [at] nsf [dot] gov.


Jim Kurose
Assistant Director, CISE

Grace Wang
Acting Assistant Director, ENG

Click here for the PDF version of the Dear Colleague Letter.