STEM

Future of Work at the Human-Technology Frontier: Core Research (FW-HTF)

Monday, January 7, 2019

Program Solicitation
NSF 19-541

Synopsis of Program

In 2016, the National Science Foundation (NSF) unveiled a set of “Big Ideas,” 10 bold, long-term research and process ideas that identify areas for future investment at the frontiers of science and engineering (see https://www.nsf.gov/news/special_reports/big_ideas/index.jsp). The Big Ideas represent unique opportunities to position our Nation at the cutting edge of global science and engineering leadership by bringing together diverse disciplinary perspectives to support convergence research. As such, when responding to this solicitation, even though proposals must be submitted to the Directorate for Engineering (ENG), Office of Emerging Frontiers and Multidisciplinary Activities (ENG/EFMA), once received the proposals will be managed by a cross-disciplinary team of NSF Program Directors.

The Future of Work at the Human-Technology Frontier (FW-HTF), one of the Big Ideas, is one mechanism by which NSF is responding to the challenges and opportunities for the future of jobs and work. The overarching vision is to support convergent research to understand and develop the human-technology partnership, design new technologies to augment human performance, illuminate the emerging socio-technological landscape, understand the risks and benefits of new technologies, understand and influence the impact of artificial intelligence on workers and work, and foster lifelong and pervasive learning.

The landscape of jobs and work is changing at unprecedented speed, enabled by advances in computer and engineering technologies such as artificial intelligence and robotics, deeper understanding of societal and environmental change, advances in the learning sciences, pervasive, intelligent, and autonomous systems, and new conceptions of work and workplaces. This technological and scientific revolution presents a historical opportunity to the Nation and its people, in the creation of new industries and occupations, enhanced productivity and quality of work life, and the potential for more people to participate in the workforce, ultimately yielding sustained innovation and global leadership. But, as history teaches, such changes also come with risks. Some risks are immediate, such as jobs lost to automation or demand for skills not met by current educational pathways. Other equally important risks include new security threats, algorithmic biases, unanticipated legal consequences including privacy implications, dependence on technology and erosion of human knowledge and skills, inadequate workplace policies and practices, or undesirable impact on the built environment.

The specific objectives of the Future of Work at the Human-Technology Frontier program are (1) to facilitate convergent research that employs the joint perspectives, methods, and knowledge of computer science, engineering, learning sciences, research on education and workforce training, and social, behavioral, and economic sciences; (2) to encourage the development of a research community dedicated to designing intelligent technologies and work organization and modes inspired by their positive impact on individual workers, the work at hand, the way people learn and adapt to technological change, creative and supportive workplaces (including remote locations, homes, classrooms, or virtual spaces), and benefits for social, economic, and environmental systems at different scales; (3) to promote deeper basic understanding of the interdependent human-technology partnership to advance societal needs by advancing design of intelligent work technologies that operate in harmony with human workers, including consideration of how adults learn the new skills needed to interact with these technologies in the workplace, and by enabling broad workforce participation, including improving accessibility for those challenged by physical or cognitive impairment; and (4) to understand, anticipate, and explore ways of mitigating potential risks arising from future work at the human-technology frontier. Ultimately, this research will advance our understanding of how technology and people interact, distribute tasks, cooperate, and complement each other in different specific work contexts of significant societal importance. It will advance the knowledge base related to worker education and training and formal and informal learning to enable all potential workers to adapt to changing work environments. It will advance our understanding of the links between the future of work at the human-technology frontier and the surrounding society, including the intended potential of new technologies and the unintended consequences for workers and the well-being of society.

For the purposes of this solicitation, work is defined as mental or physical activity to achieve tangible benefit such as income, profit, or community welfare. The Future of Work at the Human-Technology Frontier is, in turn, a conceptualization of work in the future that will be enabled or improved by advances in intelligent technology and their synergistic integration with human skill to achieve broad participation in the workforce and improve the social, economic, and environmental well-being of society. To reach this goal, research is sought that is anchored in work. Proposals must clearly define the work and work context addressed by the research. Technology should be integrated with learning sciences, research on education and workforce training, and social, behavioral, and economic science perspectives to advance the science of the human-technology team. Potential results should contribute to fundamental advances in the science and technology of future workforce development and education, work environments, and positive work outcomes for workers and society at large. Proposals are encouraged that are oriented toward the future of work at the human-technology frontier and that are not overly couched in current technology or work practices.

A proposal for a research grant in this program must focus on advancing fundamental understanding of future work, and potential improvements to work, workplaces, workforce preparation, or work outcomes for workers and society. It must be convergent research that addresses the technological as well as the human and societal dimensions and potential impact of future work, and in doing so, make significant contributions to both intellectual merit and broader impact. Achieving this goal requires integration and convergence of disciplines across computer science, engineering, learning sciences, research on education and workforce training, and social, behavioral, and economic sciences. A convergent perspective is essential to understand and shape long-term social and economic drivers, so that advanced intelligent technology will strengthen the social fabric. A convergent perspective also provides insights into education and re-skilling, so that the benefits of emerging technology can be conferred upon all citizens.

Award Information

Anticipated Type of Award: Standard Grant

Estimated Number of Awards: 30

Up to 15 Planning Grant Awards and up to 15 Research Grant Awards.

The number of awards is dependent upon the proposals received and the degree to which proposals meet the solicitation goals and NSF merit review criteria.

Anticipated Funding Amount: $30,000,000

Two classes of proposals will be considered through this solicitation:

  1. FW-HTF Planning Grants (FW-HTF-P) may be requested for a total budget not to exceed $150,000 for a period of 1 year.
  2. FW-HTF Research Grants (FW-HTF-R) may be requested at two levels:
    1. Medium FW-HTF-R proposals may request support for a period of up to 3 years, with a total budget not to exceed $1,500,000.
    2. Large FW-HTF-R proposals may request support for a period of up to 4 years, with a total budget between $1,500,001 and $3,000,000.

FW-HTF program funding is pending the availability of funds.

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:

PIs must hold appointments at U.S.-based campuses/offices of eligible organizations (IHEs or Non-profit, non-academic organizations). There are no restrictions, beyond the eligibility outlined in the PAPPG Chapter I.E, on who may serve as Co-PIs, Senior Personnel or Consultant (see Categories of Proposers in PAPPG Chapter I.E).

Limit on Number of Proposals per Organization:

There are no restrictions or limits.

Limit on Number of Proposals per PI or Co-PI: 1

An individual may appear as PI, Co-PI, Senior Personnel, Other Personnel, or Consultant on only one proposal submitted in response to this solicitation. This eligibility constraint will be strictly enforced. In the event an individual exceeds this limit, the first proposal received prior to the deadline will be accepted and the remainder will be returned without review. This limitation includes proposals submitted by a lead organization, collaborative non-lead proposals, and any subawards included as part of a collaborative proposal involving multiple institutions. No exceptions will be made.

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:

    Not Applicable

C. Due Dates

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

         March 06, 2019

Dear Colleague Letter: STEM Workforce Development Utilizing Flexible Personal Learning Environments

Thursday, December 13, 2018

December 4, 2018

Dear Colleagues:

The National Science Foundation (NSF) seeks new proposals and supplemental funding requests to existing awards that support flexible personalized learning to prepare the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) workforce of the future. NSF envisions projects that collectively apply to all learners, from young children to those already in the workforce. In particular, we would like to support research that complements an anticipated future funding opportunity made possible by a gift from the Boeing Corporation, which was announced on September 24, 2018 (https://www.nsf.gov/news/news_summ.jsp?cntn_id=296700).

The Boeing gift established a partnership between NSF and Boeing to accelerate training in crucial skill areas for the future U.S. workforce. It will be used to support design, development, implementation, and analysis of online courses in model-based engineering, model-based systems engineering, mechatronics, robotics, data science and sensor analytics, program management, and artificial intelligence. These courses will use personalized learning systems to maximize their effectiveness for diverse learners.

There will be two parallel funding opportunities to support STEM workforce preparation. One will be made possible by the Boeing gift and the other involves the efforts funded in response to this Dear Colleague Letter (DCL). For the opportunities in response to this DCL, NSF seeks proposals that will broadly inform development of personalized learning systems or generalize the research results generated during the deployment of online courses. This could be accomplished either by using the data generated by those systems or by studying the systems themselves. NSF encourages innovative educational research and development proposals that will help the nation educate the STEM workforce of the future.

NSF invites proposals to existing programs listed below and requests for supplemental funding to existing awards that engage a convergent science approach (https://www.nsf.gov/news/special_reports/big_ideas/convergent.jsp). Such an approach often benefits from interdisciplinary teams representing multiple fields. Such teams can make learning a convergent experience and accomplish learning goals that are not otherwise achievable.

The outcomes of successful proposals responding to this DCL will advance evidence-based understanding of STEM workforce development at any level. Successful proposals will include a well-developed research plan that specifies how the project will strengthen the research base that informs investments in STEM workforce preparation and development. For example, proposals may address topics including, but not limited to:

  • effective design of personalized learning systems for STEM education at any level;
  • factors that increase persistence, motivation, self-efficacy, and retention of learners;
  • the influence of public/private partnerships on workforce preparation;
  • the design of educational interventions that meet workplace expectations for knowledge and competencies; and
  • measuring the effectiveness of these interventions for different audiences.

Proposers are encouraged to leverage current and anticipated future NSF investments (e.g., interdisciplinary research centers, large facilities, funded workforce development projects) as research bases. NSF anticipates that coordinated synergistic efforts are likely to be more fruitful than fragmented individual contributions.

RESPONDING TO THIS DCL

Proposals responding to this DCL should be made through one of the existing NSF programs listed below. Supplemental funding requests responding to this DCL for existing awards in the programs listed below are also welcome. To determine whether a research topic is within the scope of this DCL, principal investigators are strongly encouraged to contact the managing NSF Program Officer(s) of the participating program(s) to which they plan to submit their proposal. These programs include:

For new proposals to ensure proper consideration, principal investigators must refer to this DCL in the overview statement of the Project Summary and in the Project Description. Requests for supplemental funding to existing awards must also include a reference to this DCL. The Project Description or supplemental funding request should also include a brief description about how the project supports flexible personalized learning, thus complementing the work funded by the Boeing gift.

In summary, proposals responding to this DCL:

  1. could be high-risk, but have the potential for high reward;
  2. should include multidisciplinary leadership teams;
  3. will advance evidence-based understanding of STEM workforce development at any level (K-12 through workplace);
  4. must inform development of personalized learning systems or generalize the research results generated during the deployment of those systems;
  5. must include a research plan that will contribute new knowledge about STEM workforce preparation and development;
  6. must be submitted to one of the programs listed in this DCL; and
  7. must comply with the relevant program/solicitation-specific requirements.

CONTACTS

For questions about any of the programs listed above, please contact one of the programs officers listed in the respective solicitation. General questions about this Dear Colleague Letter may be addressed to:

  • R. Steven Turley, rturley [at] nsf [dot] gov, (703) 292-2207
  • John C. Cherniavsky, jchernia [at] nsf [dot] gov, (703) 292-5136
  • David Haury, dhaury [at] nsf [dot] gov, (703) 292-5102
  • Ann Rivet, arivet [at] nsf [dot] gov, (703) 292-4764
  • Heather Watson, hwatson [at] nsf [dot] gov, (703) 292-7091

Emerging Frontiers in Research and Innovation 2019

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Program Solicitation
NSF 19-502

NSF Logo  

National Science Foundation

Directorate for Engineering
     Emerging Frontiers and Multidisciplinary Activities

Directorate for Biological Sciences

Directorate for Computer & Information Science & Engineering

 
AFOSR logo

Air Force Office of Scientific Research

Letter of Intent Due Date(s) (required) (due by 5 p.m. submitter's local time):

     November 29, 2018

Preliminary Proposal Due Date(s) (required) (due by 5 p.m. submitter's local time):

     January 07, 2019

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

     April 25, 2019

 

Synopsis of Program

The Emerging Frontiers in Research and Innovation (EFRI) program of the NSF Directorate for Engineering (ENG) serves a critical role in helping ENG focus on important emerging areas in a timely manner. This solicitation is a funding opportunity for interdisciplinary teams of researchers to embark on rapidly advancing frontiers of fundamental engineering research. For this solicitation, we will consider proposals that aim to investigate emerging frontiers in one of the following two research areas:

  • Chromatin and Epigenetic Engineering (CEE)
  • Continuum, Compliant, and Configurable Soft Robotics Engineering (C3 SoRo)

This solicitation will be coordinated with the Directorate for Biological Sciences (BIO) and the Directorate for Computer and Information Science and Engineering (CISE).

EFRI seeks proposals with transformative ideas that represent an opportunity for a significant shift in fundamental engineering knowledge with a strong potential for long term impact on national needs or a grand challenge. The proposals must also meet the detailed requirements delineated in this solicitation.

FURTHER INFORMATION: Further information about the EFRI program may be obtained by viewing the slides from the FY18 EFRI informational webinar. Please click here to view the FY18 slides.

 

Proposal Preparation and Submission Instructions

A. Proposal Preparation Instructions

  • Letters of Intent: Submission of Letters of Intent is required. Please see the full text of this solicitation for further information.
  • Preliminary Proposals: Submission of Preliminary Proposals is required. Please see the full text of this solicitation for further information.
  • Full Proposals:

B. Budgetary Information

  • Cost Sharing Requirements:

    Inclusion of voluntary committed cost sharing is prohibited.

  • Indirect Cost (F&A) Limitations:

    Not Applicable

  • Other Budgetary Limitations:

    Not Applicable

C. Due Dates

  • Letter of Intent Due Date(s) (required) (due by 5 p.m. submitter's local time):

         November 29, 2018

  • Preliminary Proposal Due Date(s) (required) (due by 5 p.m. submitter's local time):

         January 07, 2019

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

         April 25, 2019

 

Registration Open for Computer Science Institute for Women, July 2018

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Register here: https://compsciforwomen.eventbrite.com

Questions can be directed to Terry Woodford-Thomas (tthomas [at] danforthcenter [dot] org) and Fengpeng Sun (sunf [at] umkc [dot] edu)

NSF INCLUDES Solicitation

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Program Solicitation
NSF 18-529

 

Inclusion across the Nation of Communities of Learners of Underrepresented Discoverers in Engineering and Science (NSF INCLUDES)

 

This solicitation is a call for NSF INCLUDES Alliance proposals only.

 

NSF INCLUDES (Inclusion across the Nation of Communities of Learners of Underrepresented Discoverers in Engineering and Science) is a comprehensive national initiative designed to enhance U.S. leadership in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) discoveries and innovations by focusing on broadening participation in these fields at scale. The vision of NSF INCLUDES is to catalyze the STEM enterprise to collaboratively work for inclusive change, which will result in a STEM workforce that reflects the population of the Nation. The initiative is developing a National Network composed of NSF INCLUDES Design and Development Launch Pilots, NSF INCLUDES Alliances, an NSF INCLUDES Coordination Hub, NSF-funded broadening participation projects, other relevant NSF-funded projects, scholars engaged in broadening participation research, and other organizations that support the development of talent from all sectors of society to build an inclusive STEM workforce. The successful implementation of NSF INCLUDES will result in substantial advances toward a diverse, innovative, and well-prepared STEM workforce to support our Nation’s economy and continued U.S. leadership in the global STEM enterprise. It is anticipated that NSF’s investment will contribute to new and improved STEM career pathways, policies, opportunities to learn, and practices for equity and inclusion. The initiative will be supported by the NSF INCLUDES Coordination Hub (NSF 17-591) that will provide a framework for communication and networking, network assistance and reinforcement, and visibility and expansion for the NSF INCLUDES National Network as a whole.

This solicitation offers opportunities for NSF INCLUDES Alliances. The critical functions of each NSF INCLUDES Alliance are to:

  1. Develop a vision and strategy (e.g., problem statement and theory of change) for broadening participation in STEM along with relevant metrics of success and key milestones/goals to be achieved during the project’s lifecycle;
  2. Contribute to the knowledge base on broadening participation in STEM through broadening participation and implementation research, sharing project evaluations, data, new scientific findings/discoveries, and promising practices;
  3. Develop multi-stakeholder partnerships and build infrastructure among them to decrease social distance and achieve progress on common goals targeted by the Alliance;
  4. Establish a "backbone" or support organization that provides a framework for communication and networking, network assistance and reinforcement, visibility and expansion of the Alliance and its partners, that will collaborate with the NSF INCLUDES Coordination Hub;
  5. Advance a logic model or other heuristic that identifies Alliance outcomes that reflect implementation of change at scale and progress toward developing an inclusive STEM enterprise.

Collectively, the set of NSF INCLUDES Alliances are to:

  1. Participate in a network of peer alliances to achieve long-term goals of the NSF INCLUDES program;
  2. Collaborate with the NSF INCLUDES Coordination Hub to build critical knowledge that shows measurable progress toward long-term goals; and
  3. Work to build on-ramps for other organizations and broadening participation stakeholders to join in and expand the NSF National Network.

All NSF INCLUDES Alliance proposals should describe the results they expect to achieve in broadening participation in STEM. Each proposal must explain how they will build the infrastructure to foster collaboration and achieve impact by emphasizing the following five characteristics of the NSF INCLUDES Program: a) Vision, b) Partnerships, c) Goals and Metrics, d) Leadership and Communication, and e) the Potential for Expansion, Sustainability and Scale.

Vision: Every NSF INCLUDES Alliance proposal should describe the vision of what the Alliance aspires to achieve. What will be different in the landscape of broadening participation in STEM as a result of the efforts of this Alliance?

Partnerships: Partnerships and networks are at the heart of the NSF INCLUDES National Network, and Alliance proposals should include a plan for creating a platform for partnerships and collaborative action that includes a "backbone" or support organization. How will the Alliance partners engage an expansive community in a shared vision of the importance and power of broadening participation for scientific innovation? Why is the partnership that is being developed the right partnership to achieve the vision?

Goals and Metrics: Alliance proposals should delineate how the partnerships and networks will develop and be driven by shared goals, available evidence from research that forms the basis for the plans, and the metrics and milestones that define the pathway to achieving the vision. Robust data collection plans and implementation research will need to be included, to facilitate evidence-based decision making and adjustments as the Alliance matures.

Leadership and Communication: Alliance proposals should provide details for how the Alliance will build and strengthen capacity for leadership and communication among collaborating organizations and individuals to create opportunities and enact inclusion in STEM.

Expansion, Sustainability and Scale: Finally, Alliance proposals should discuss how the collaborative infrastructure building process will ultimately lead to: expansion (more partners joining the movement), sustainability (more long-term connections being made), and implementation of change at scale (a likelihood for collaborative change to lead to change on a broad scale).

 

Award Information

Anticipated Type of Award: Cooperative Agreement

Estimated Number of Awards: 1 to 3

In FY 2018, up to three (3) NSF INCLUDES Alliance awards will be made pending the availability of funds.

Anticipated Funding Amount: $8,500,000

In FY 2018, approximately $8.5 million is available to fund new NSF INCLUDES Alliance awards.

 

Eligibility Information

Who May Submit Proposals:

The categories of proposers eligible to submit proposals to the National Science Foundation are identified in the NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG), Chapter I.E.

Who May Serve as PI:

There are no restrictions or limits.

Limit on Number of Proposals per Organization:

An organization may serve as the lead institution on only one Alliance proposal. Organizations that serve as the lead institution on an Alliance proposal may still participate in other Alliance proposals as a collaborating institution. In the event that an organization exceeds the limit of one proposal as lead, proposals received within the limit will be accepted based on earliest date and time of proposal submission. No exceptions will be made.

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

An individual may serve as a PI or Co-PI on only two (2) NSF INCLUDES Alliance proposals. Proposals that exceed the PI or Co-PI limit will be returned without review. In the event that an individual exceeds this limit, proposals received within the limit will be accepted based on earliest date and time of proposal submission. No exceptions will be made.

 

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:

    Not Applicable

C. Due Dates

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

         April 04, 2018

         April 02, 2019

2017 STEM for All Video Showcase

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

171 NSF and other Federally funded projects share three-minute videos of their innovative work to improve STEM and CS teaching and learning.
 

 
Browse short videos highlighting 171 STEM education initiatives. Use the filters to find those of interest.
 
 
 
Read the conversations related to each video that you view.
 
See videos recognized by Facilitator ChoicePresenter Choice and Public Choice
 
 
See videos directed towards TeachersResearchersHigher Ed FacultyInformal Educators, and Policymakers.
 
 
Tags: NSF, STEM, videos

National Science Foundation Research Traineeship (NRT) Program FAQs

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

PROGRAM SOLICITATION: NSF 18-507

Letter of Intent Due Date(s) (required) (due by 5 p.m. submitter's local time):

     November 27, 2017 - December 06, 2017

     November 26, 2018 - December 06, 2018

     November 25, 2019 - December 06, 2019

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

     February 06, 2018

     February 06, 2019

     February 06, 2020

General Information

Program Title:

National Science Foundation Research Traineeship (NRT) Program

Synopsis of Program:

The NSF Research Traineeship (NRT) program is designed to encourage the development and implementation of bold, new, and potentially transformative models for STEM graduate education training. The NRT program seeks proposals that explore ways for graduate students in research-based master’s and doctoral degree programs to develop the skills, knowledge, and competencies needed to pursue a range of STEM careers.

The program is dedicated to effective training of STEM graduate students in high priority interdisciplinary research areas, through the use of a comprehensive traineeship model that is innovative, evidence-based, and aligned with changing workforce and research needs. For FY2018, proposals are requested in any interdisciplinary research theme of national priority, with special emphasis on two high priority areas: (1) Harnessing the Data Revolution (HDR) and (2) Innovations at the Nexus of Food, Energy, and Water Systems (INFEWS). HDR is expected to continue as a priority research area for FY2019 and FY2020 competitions, along with a new priority area to be announced in 2018.

The NRT program addresses workforce development, emphasizing broad participation, and institutional capacity building needs in graduate education. Strategic collaborations with the private sector, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), government agencies, national laboratories, field stations, teaching and learning centers, informal science centers, and academic partners are encouraged. NRT especially welcomes proposals that will pair well with the efforts of NSF INCLUDES to develop STEM talent from all sectors and groups in our society (https://www.nsf.gov/news/special_reports/nsfincludes/index.jsp). Collaborations are encouraged between NRT proposals and existing NSF INCLUDES projects, provided the collaboration strengthens both projects.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for NRT Program

  1. What is an NRT trainee?
  2. What is an NRT traineeship?
  3. Can international students be NRT trainees?
  4. If I forgot to submit a letter of intent during the submission window, can I get a waiver to submit a full proposal in February.
  5. Is there greater funding available for the priority research areas identified in the solicitation?
  6. Can we propose research that addresses more than one priority area?
  7. If master's and doctoral students are included in one NRT project, how much overlap in their training is expected and/or preferred?
  8. Does the mention of pedagogy and mentoring training for faculty members mean that the NRT will fund professional development for faculty?
  9. Can a project propose funding for the improvement of a training model that is not entirely new but is certainly not (yet) broadly adopted?
  10. Does the fact that "Education" is not included in the "NRT" title mean that NRT will fund more proposed hands-on training and less classroom instruction?
  11. Referring to the "Key features of NRT Projects" (Section II.C of the solicitation), are we being asked to develop evidence-based strategies to broaden participation of students from diverse backgrounds, or are we being asked to apply evidence-based strategies that are already in practice?
  12. Are there preferred types of formative assessments (Section II.C of the solicitation) that we would include as central to the traineeship, or are these formative assessments open as part of the new model we are proposing?
  13. Is there a limit on cost of education that can be charged to the grant?
  14. Will NRT proposals with only external evaluators receive more preference than proposals that include internal evaluators?
  15. Can I propose an NRT project for a non-research-based Professional Master's program?
  16. Does the limit on the number of submissions per organization apply to subawardees and non-lead organizations on collaborative proposals?
  17. Can NRT projects include international partners?
  18. Will we need Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval of the evaluation activities and instruments described in our proposal?
  19. Will a project that focuses on a master's only program receive lower preference than projects involving doctoral students only or both doctoral and master's students?
  20. Will proposals that do not meet the eligibility requirements for submission be returned without review?
  21. Is there a list of national priority interdisciplinary research themes?
  22. Can a project focus on a research theme other than those identified in the high priority areas?

 

  1. What is an NRT trainee?

    An NRT "trainee" is a research-based STEM graduate student (M.S. or Ph.D.) who is accepted into the institution's NRT program and is expected to complete all the required program elements as described in the proposal. NRT trainees can be NRT-funded or non-NRT-funded; they do not have to receive stipend and tuition support directly from the NRT award. They can be supported from a variety of sources including research assistantships, teaching assistantships, fellowships, scholarships, or other funding.

  2. What is an NRT traineeship?

    An NRT traineeship is focused on students and their technical and broader professional development. In the case of NRT, a traineeship involves a strong institutional commitment to mentoring STEM graduate students and the development of their technical and transferable professional skills (e.g., teamwork, ethics, communications, teaching, leadership, and project management) for a variety of STEM careers within or outside academia. NRT includes a focus on the students' overall development as STEM professionals, in addition to their conducting cutting-edge interdisciplinary research.

  3. Can international students be NRT trainees?

    Yes, they can be NRT trainees and fully participate in any NRT program elements (e.g., courses, workshops, and internships). However, NRT stipends and customary costs of education for stipend-supported trainees are restricted to U.S. citizens, nationals, and permanent residents.

  4. If I forgot to submit a letter of intent during the submission window, can I get a waiver to submit a full proposal in February.

    No, a valid letter of intent MUST be submitted by the deadline to be eligible for full proposal submission. There is approximately a 2-week submission window for each annual competition. The PI prepares the letter but the official submission (via the AOR) must be completed before the deadline. A letter from a prior award cycle is not valid.

  5. Is there greater funding available for the priority research areas identified in the solicitation?

    No, there is no set allocation for a priority area. Funding is anticipated to be allocated in each area, including proposals submitted outside the identified priority areas.

  6. Can we propose research that addresses more than one priority area?

    Although NRT proposals may include research and training efforts that contribute to more than one priority area, each project should identify a main area (e.g. HDR, INFEWS or other) by using the appropriate title prefix. The research area should be identified in the Project Title at the time of submission using the appropriate prefix (e.g. "NRT-HDR:" or "NRT-INFEWS:" or "NRT:" for other research areas).

  7. If master's and doctoral students are included in one NRT project, how much overlap in their training is expected and/or preferred?

    The training approach is left up to the proposer to develop. Potentially, training in specific methodologies could be suitable for both master's and doctoral students together. However, some training might be better suited for master's or doctoral students separately.

  8. Does the mention of pedagogy and mentoring training for faculty members mean that the NRT will fund professional development for faculty?

    An NRT proposal may include funding for faculty training.

  9. Can a project propose funding for the improvement of a training model that is not entirely new but is certainly not (yet) broadly adopted?

    An NRT proposal may include funding to expand or improve a current training model, but the potential added value should be substantial and potentially transformative.

  10. Does the fact that "Education" is not included in the "NRT" title mean that NRT will fund more proposed hands-on training and less classroom instruction?

    No, training may include classroom instruction.

  11. Referring to the "Key features of NRT Projects" (Section II.C of the solicitation), are we being asked to develop evidence-based strategies to broaden participation of students from diverse backgrounds, or are we being asked to apply evidence-based strategies that are already in practice?

    Proposers are encouraged to build upon existing evidence-based strategies for broadening participation of students from diverse backgrounds, although they may also incorporate and test strategies that show promise of success based on available information.

  12. Are there preferred types of formative assessments (Section II.C of the solicitation) that we would include as central to the traineeship, or are these formative assessments open as part of the new model we are proposing?

    It is up to the proposers to identify the types of formative assessments. However, they should be formulated and designed to regularly inform and improve the NRT project.

  13. Is there a limit on cost of education that can be charged to the grant?

    The institution can budget for customary costs of education (e.g. tuition, health insurance, and required fees) for NRT trainees while they are receiving NRT stipend support. You may offer a discounted tuition rate if this is a customary practice for federally-funded trainees, research assistants, and/or fellows at your institution and not a practice solely for the NRT trainees.

  14. Will NRT proposals with only external evaluators receive more preference than proposals that include internal evaluators?

    All proposals must have an external evaluator. If an internal evaluator is also engaged, the project must provide justification and explain how lack of bias is ensured, including at minimum a provision for periodic external assessment of the ongoing evaluation by the external evaluator.

  15. Can I propose an NRT project for a non-research-based Professional Master's program?

    No, research is integral to the NRT program. For NRT proposals, non-research-based professional master's students are eligible to participate in NRT activities; however, they cannot be considered "trainees" (See FAQ #1 for a definition of "trainee") by the program and are ineligible to receive NRT stipend or cost of education support. NRT trainees must be in a research-based degree program that requires a thesis or dissertation.

  16. Does the limit on the number of submissions per organization apply to subawardees and non-lead organizations on collaborative proposals?

    Yes, eligible organizations may participate in only two proposals per competition. Participation includes serving as a lead organization on a non-collaborative proposal or as a lead organization, non-lead organization, or subawardee on a collaborative proposal. However, this limitation does not apply to organizations participating solely as evaluators on projects.

  17. Can NRT projects include international partners?

    Yes, NRT projects may include international partners if they provide significant added value to the projects. However, international partners cannot be subawardees and funds for their participation must be drawn from non-NSF sources.

  18. Will we need Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval of the evaluation activities and instruments described in our proposal?

    If your proposal is successful and awarded, you will need to provide official documentation from your institutions IRB confirming either that the planned activities involving human subjects have been approved or that your project falls into an exemption category.

  19. Will a project that focuses on a master's only program receive lower preference than projects involving doctoral students only or both doctoral and master's students?

    No, all proposals will be evaluated based on their merit. Projects involving master's students, Ph.D. students, and both master's and Ph.D. students will be evaluated equally.

  20. Will proposals that do not meet the eligibility requirements for submission be returned without review?

    Yes, proposals that do not comply with the solicitation will be returned without review. The eligibility conditions (Section IV of the solicitation) include who may submit proposals and serve as a PI, limits on the number of proposals per organization, and limits to number of proposals per PI or Co-PI. In cases where proposals are submitted that exceed eligibility limits, submissions will be accepted (beginning with the earliest submission time stamp) until the limit is reached. All submissions beyond the eligibility limits (based on submission time stamp) will be returned without review.

  21. Is there a list of national priority interdisciplinary research themes?

    No, there is not a set list of research themes. Instead, submissions that are not in one of the identified priority areas should justify that the interdisciplinary research theme is an area of high national need.

  22. Can a project focus on a research theme other than those identified in the high priority areas?

    Yes, traineeships may focus on any area of interdisciplinary research that is of high national priority. The project team should justify in the proposal why the identified area is of national importance and how a traineeship program would fulfill an unmet need.

Cyberlearning for Work at the Human-Technology Frontier

Friday, September 29, 2017

Program Solicitation

NSF 17-598

Replaces Document(s):
NSF 17-520

NSF Logo  

National Science Foundation

Directorate for Computer & Information Science & Engineering

Directorate for Education & Human Resources

Directorate for Engineering

Directorate for Social, Behavioral & Economic Sciences

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

January 08, 2018

Second Monday in January, Annually Thereafter

IMPORTANT INFORMATION AND REVISION NOTES

Please note that the solicitation has been substantially revised. The main revisions are:

  • New added focus for cyberlearning within the context of work at the human-technology frontier;
  • The Exploratory (EXP) category is no longer relevant as all proposals should be exploratory in nature;
  • Projects will be funded up to a total of $750,000 per project;
  • All proposals must have innovations in both technology and learning;
  • Advisory boards are optional and no longer required;
  • There are fewer required sections in the Project Description;
  • Special award conditions are no longer specified; and
  • Solicitation-specific review criteria are no longer specified.

Any proposal submitted in response to this solicitation should be submitted in accordance with the revised NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG) (NSF 17-1), which is effective for proposals submitted, or due, on or after January 30, 2017.

SUMMARY OF PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS

General Information

Program Title:

Cyberlearning for Work at the Human-Technology Frontier

Synopsis of Program:

The purpose of the Cyberlearning for Work at the Human-Technology Frontier program is to fund exploratory and synergistic research in learning technologies to prepare learners to excel in work at the human-technology frontier. This program responds to the pressing societal need to educate and re-educate learners of all ages (students, teachers and workers) in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) content areas to ultimately function in highly technological environments, including in collaboration with intelligent systems. Innovative technologies can reshape learning processes, which in turn can influence new technology design. Learning technology research in this program should be informed by the convergence of multiple disciplines: education and learning sciences, computer and information science and engineering, and cognitive, behavioral and social sciences. This program funds learning technology research in STEM and other foundational areas that enable STEM learning.

Cognizant Program Officer(s):

Please note that the following information is current at the time of publishing. See program website for any updates to the points of contact.

  • For program inquiries please contact, telephone: N/A, email: Cyberlearning-WHTF [at] nsf [dot] gov
  • Tatiana Korelsky, co-lead CISE, CISE/IIS, telephone: (703) 292-8930, email: tkorelsk [at] nsf [dot] gov
  • Amy L. Baylor, co-lead EHR, EHR/DRL, telephone: (703) 292-5126, email: abaylor [at] nsf [dot] gov
  • John Cherniavsky, Senior Advisor, EHR/DRL, telephone: (703)292-5136, email: jchernia [at] nsf [dot] gov
  • William Bainbridge, Program Officer, CISE/IIS, telephone: (703)292-7470, email: wbainbri [at] nsf [dot] gov
  • Elliot Douglas, Program Officer, ENG/EEC, telephone: (703) 292-7051, email: edouglas [at] nsf [dot] gov
  • Robert Russell, Program Officer, EHR/DRL, telephone: (703) 292-2995, email: rlrussel [at] nsf [dot] gov
  • Chia Shen, Program Officer, EHR/DRL, telephone: (703)292-8447, email: cshen [at] naf [dot] gov
  • Kurt Thoroughman, Program Officer, SBE/BCS, telephone: (703) 292-7281, email: kthoroug [at] nsf [dot] gov
  • Maria Zemankova, Program Officer, CISE/IIS, telephone: (703) 292-7348, email: mzemanko [at] nsf [dot] gov

Applicable Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number(s):

  • 47.041 --- Engineering
  • 47.070 --- Computer and Information Science and Engineering
  • 47.075 --- Social Behavioral and Economic Sciences
  • 47.076 --- Education and Human Resources

Award Information

Anticipated Type of Award:

Standard Grant

Estimated Number of Awards: 20

Contingent upon availability of funds.

Anticipated Funding Amount: $15,000,000

Each project will be funded for a duration of 2 to 3 years and up to a total funding amount of $750,000.

Eligibility Information

Who May Submit Proposals:

The categories of proposers eligible to submit proposals to the National Science Foundation are identified in the NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG), Chapter I.E.

Who May Serve as PI:

There are no restrictions or limits.

Limit on Number of Proposals per Organization:

There are no restrictions or limits.

Limit on Number of Proposals per PI or Co-PI: 2

An individual may participate as PI or co-PI in no more than a total of two (2) proposals in response to this solicitation. In the event that an individual exceeds the limit for this solicitation, proposals received within the limit will be accepted based on earliest date and time of proposal submission (i.e. the first two proposals received will be accepted and the remainder will be returned without review). No exceptions will be made.

Proposal Preparation and Submission Instructions

A. Proposal Preparation Instructions

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

     

B. Budgetary Information

  • Cost Sharing Requirements:

    Inclusion of voluntary committed cost sharing is prohibited.

  • Indirect Cost (F&A) Limitations:

    Not Applicable

  • Other Budgetary Limitations:

    Not Applicable

C. Due Dates

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

    January 08, 2018

    Second Monday in January, Annually Thereafter

Proposal Review Information Criteria

Merit Review Criteria:

National Science Board approved criteria apply.

Award Administration Information

Award Conditions:

Standard NSF award conditions apply.

Reporting Requirements:

Standard NSF reporting requirements apply.

 

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Summary of Program Requirements

  1. Introduction
     
  2. Program Description
     
  3. Award Information
     
  4. Eligibility Information
     
  5. Proposal Preparation and Submission Instructions
    1. Proposal Preparation Instructions
    2. Budgetary Information
    3. Due Dates
    4. FastLane/Grants.gov Requirements
       
  6. NSF Proposal Processing and Review Procedures
    1. Merit Review Principles and Criteria
    2. Review and Selection Process
       
  7. Award Administration Information
    1. Notification of the Award
    2. Award Conditions
    3. Reporting Requirements
       
  8. Agency Contacts
     
  9. Other Information

Dear Colleague Letter: Opportunity for Active EFRI and ERC Awardees to Apply for Supplemental Funding through the Research Experience and Mentoring (REM) Program

Friday, September 29, 2017

NSF 17-141

September 20, 2017

Dear Colleague:

The National Science Foundation Directorate for Engineering (NSF/ENG) continually seeks to advance scientific progress in research and innovation while broadening participation of underrepresented groups in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields. This letter seeks to inform the community about an opportunity to pursue both of these goals through supplements to active Emerging Frontiers in Research and Innovation (EFRI) research awards and active Engineering Research Center (ERC) awards from the Research Experience and Mentoring (REM) Program.

Active EFRI and ERC awardees may apply for supplemental funding from the REM program via FastLane. REM funding will support costs associated with bringing Research Participants (RPs) into the laboratory over the summer to participate in mentored activities and research aligned with the EFRI-supported research goals. REM funds may also be used to extend structured mentoring into the academic year.

INTRODUCTION

NSF encourages EFRI- and ERC-supported researchers to create carefully mentored research opportunities for high school students, STEM teachers, undergraduate STEM students, faculty, and veterans who may not otherwise become engaged in a research project, and to utilize the contributions and talents of these participants to make further progress toward research goals. The experience should be mutually beneficial. Research experiences and mentorship have been positively correlated with STEM success. For example:

  • Effective mentorship in STEM has been shown to be impactful for all learners and can often strengthen persistence in STEM1.
  • Co-curricular activities which provide both authentic disciplinary experiences and mentoring support influence retention and engagement in STEM234.
  • Mentoring and training reinforce and strengthen the persistence of underrepresented students in STEM courses and majors4.
  • Mentoring and experiential opportunities are valuable for engaging K-12 students and teachers5.

The REM Program seeks to stimulate this mutual process of research exploration and interaction by offering the Principal Investigators (PIs) flexibility to design the research experience and mentoring plan for the RPs. The REM Program also encourages PIs to leverage local STEM-related expertise and infrastructure already supported by NSF.

PROGRAM DESCRIPTION

The REM Program supports the active involvement of research participants (high school students, STEM teachers, undergraduate STEM students, faculty, and veterans) in hands-on research in order to bring participants into contact with suitable STEM mentors and expose them to this rich research experience.

The main goals of the REM Program are to provide research experiences and mentoring opportunities to STEM students and/or educators that may ultimately enhance their career and academic trajectories while enhancing EFRI- and ERC-supported research. The REM Program may also enable the building of long-term collaborative partnerships among EFRI- and ERC-supported researchers, community colleges, local four-year colleges, and local school districts.

Activities that are innovative and site-specific are encouraged. Effective summer research programs typically have many of the following characteristics, which are provided here as general guidelines:

  • Mentorship training for researchers and affiliated graduate students or postdocs;
  • Well-designed, introductory training for RPs;
  • Six to ten weeks of summer research;
  • Continued mentorship of RPs throughout the academic year;
  • Participation of RPs in research team meetings and topic-related conferences or workshops; and
  • Guidance for RPs in co-authoring publications and/or posters.

Each REM supplemental funding request should be specific to the local setting, resources, and skills of the PI/Research Team. The REM Program especially encourages partnerships with one or more of the following types of institutions:

  • Inner-city schools or other high-needs K-12 schools;
  • Community colleges that serve underrepresented populations; and
  • Four-year colleges that serve underrepresented populations.

Requests for supplemental funding must include a Recruitment Plan, describing how at least six members of one or more of the following groups will be recruited as RPs:

  • Underrepresented minorities (African-Americans, Hispanics, Native Americans, Alaska Natives, Native Hawaiians, and other Pacific Islanders);
  • Women and girls;
  • Veterans enrolled in post-secondary education; or
  • Persons with disabilities.

PIs requesting a REM supplement must provide a Research Participant Mentoring Plan describing the mentoring activities that will be provided to the RPs supported by this supplement. Mentoring activities may include, but are not limited to:

  • Establishing a mutually agreed-upon list of expectations and goals;
  • Meeting in advance of the research experience in order to orient RPs, learn their research interests/preferences, and arrange placements;
  • Providing or arranging for didactic training in advance of the laboratory experience;
  • Providing or arranging for mentorship training for those working closely with RPs;
  • Providing timely evaluations of progress towards expected goals;
  • Providing professional development activities such as career/educational counseling, workshop participation, networking and internships;
  • Providing guidance in effective scientific writing and oral communications training for publications and presentations at conferences/meetings;
  • Accompanying RPs at professional conferences and/or funding their participation;
  • Providing opportunities for RPs' interaction in seminars or symposiums;
  • Encouraging networking among RPs, mentors, and PIs at periodic working lunches or occasional outings (off-site research team meetings or retreats);
  • Providing guidance on ways to improve teaching, leadership, communication, and mentoring skills;
  • Providing guidance on how to collaborate effectively with researchers from diverse backgrounds and inter-disciplinary areas; and
  • Providing field trips to related facilities and/or local facilities of engineering interest.

REM supplemental funding requests must also include an evaluation component, including but not limited to a pre-and-post survey of RPs (and possibly mentors, especially if graduate students serve as mentors). Attitudinal changes and/or changes to career trajectory, effectiveness of mentoring, understanding of scientific underpinning, added skill sets should be measured. An initial Logic Model describing expected outcomes of the activities undertaken, and the mechanism(s) to measure and evaluate those outcomes should be provided. Longitudinal data will be expected where appropriate for renewals. Evaluation data must be provided in the final report to enable NSF to gauge the value of providing these experiences.

RPs and mentors are expected to present posters at the annual REM grantee meeting, held in conjunction with the Emerging Researchers National Conference in STEM (ERN) in Washington, DC. Conference details can be found at http://www.emerging-researchers.org/.

ANTICIPATED TYPE OF AWARD

EFRI and ERC Awardees may request REM supplements for up to 12 months (summer plus the academic year).

ELIGIBILITY

A request for supplemental funding may be submitted by the PI or co-PI of any currently active EFRI or ERC research award or cooperative agreement. These supplemental funding requests may include collaboration with and/or placement of RPs in other EFRI- or ERC- supported laboratories. It is recommended that ERC grantees who wish to apply for REM supplemental funding contact their cognizant NSF Program Director prior to submission. REM RP candidates must be United States citizens, nationals, or permanent residents. It is the responsibility of the submitting institution to verify eligibility of the REM RP candidate.

PREPARATION OF A REM SUPPLEMENTAL FUNDING REQUEST

Information about requesting supplemental support is contained in the NSF Proposal and Award Policies and Procedures Guide (PAPPG), Part II: Award, Administration And Monitoring of Grants and Cooperative Agreements , available online at https://www.nsf.gov/publications/pub_summ.jsp?ods_key=pappg.

In addition to the PAPPG requirements for supplemental support, the following materials must be submitted to apply for REM supplemental funding:

  • Recruitment Plan (1-3 pages, to be included as part of the summary of proposed work under the section heading "Recruitment Plan"). See additional details in the Program Description section above.
  • Research Participant Mentoring Plan (2-3 pages, to be included as part of the summary of proposed work under the section heading "Research Participant Mentoring Plan"). See additional details in the Program Description section above.
  • Evaluation Plan (2-3 pages, to be included as part of the summary of proposed work under the section heading "Evaluation Plan"). See additional details in the Program Description section above.
  • Budget, including a budget justification for the funds requested and their proposed use. The maximum annual amount that may be requested (including any associated indirect costs) is $100,000. The budget must include travel/registration expenses for RPs and mentors to participate in the REM grantee meeting to be held in Washington, DC. It must not include tuition at the EFRI- or ERC-supported institution(s). Costs related to hosting RPs may vary from laboratory to laboratory; the budget should include expenses related to providing RPs with appropriate mentoring, materials, and laboratory access.

REM RPs must be provided with a stipend for their participation. Details are left to the PI, however the following guidelines are offered based on figures from similar NSF programs:

  • High School student: not less than $2800
  • University/College/Community College (CC) student: not less than $4000
  • K-12 Teacher or CC Faculty: not less than $6000
  • College/University faculty: about one tenth of their average annual salary
  • Veteran: approximately 2 months of the Post-9/11 GI-Bill Housing Basic Allowance for Housing (calculator at https://www.defensetravel.dod.mil/site/bahCalc.cfm, setting pay grade to E-5.)
  • Housing stipends may be provided for out-of-town RPs, 18 years of age or older. Local high-school students or recent graduates (under 18 years of age) should be lodging with a parent or guardian, or may be housed in on-campus housing facilities if the university has a record of successfully housing minors (documentation should be provided).
  • Travel stipends may be provided for the RPs. RPs (under 18 years of age) may travel with the research team to the annual REM grantee conference. Appropriate safety waivers and transportation waivers should be obtained from all participants, but are mandatory for those under 18 years of age. Out-of-town RPs may be offered an allowance for occasional home visits.

The request for supplemental funding should be submitted to NSF by your organization's Sponsored Projects Office via FastLane. For questions related to the use of FastLane, contact the FastLane Help Desk: email fastlane [at] nsf [dot] gov or telephone 1-800-673-6188.

CONTACTS FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

For questions or information on submission of an REM supplemental funding request, contact the managing Program Officer for the current EFRI or ERC award, or one of the following REM Coordinators:

Kerstin Mukerji, kmukerji [at] nsf [dot] gov
Mary Poats, mpoats [at] nsf [dot] gov

An informational webinar will be held for those interested in applying for REM supplemental funding. Details on the webinar (date, time and webinar link) will be posted on the ENG Emerging Frontiers and Multidisciplinary Activities (EFMA) homepage in late September 2017.

REVIEW PROCESS

Award decisions will be based on internal review and/or review by a panel of external experts from academia and industry, and upon availability of funds. We anticipate notifying successful PIs by the end of January 2018 to facilitate timely implementation of the recruitment plan.

AWARD SIZE AND DURATION

The maximum amount of a REM supplement is $100,000. The Awardee may request REM supplements for up to 12 months (summer plus academic year). REM supplements are nontransferable.

AWARD INFORMATION

Anticipated FY 2018 budget for the REM program is approximately $1,000,000, subject to the availability of funds and the merit of proposals received.

SUBMISSION DEADLINE

The deadline for submission of a REM request is 5:00 p.m., submitter's local time, on November 27, 2017.

SPECIAL REPORTING REQUIREMENTS

The annual and final project reports must discuss the impact of the supplemental funding on increasing the participation of underrepresented groups in engineering. Accumulated quantitative data on race, gender, and disability are expected. It is anticipated that REM will open and promote new avenues for increasing the participation of underrepresented populations in engineering disciplines, and in turn, enhance the development of the U.S. engineering workforce in accordance with the America COMPETES Act (https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/110/hr2272/text), thereby addressing the continuing underrepresentation of women and minorities through 2020 anticipated in the Engineer of 2020 report of the National Academy of Engineering (http://www.nap.edu/catalog.php?record_id=10999).

We hope that you are inspired by this opportunity to design and implement a program that serves your research needs while simultaneously working to develop engineers of the future; we look forward to reading your innovative proposals.

Sincerely,

Dawn M. Tilbury
Assistant Director
Directorate for Engineering


Citations

  1. Ko, L.T., Kachchaf, R.R., Hodari, A.K., and Ong, M. (2014). Agency of women of color in physics and astronomy: Strategies for persistence and success. Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering, 20(2), 171-195.
  2. Thiry, H., Laursen, S.L., and Hunter, A.B. (2011). What experiences help students become scientists? A comparative study of research and other sources of personal and professional gains for STEM undergraduates. Journal of Higher Education, 82(4), 357-388.
  3. Chang, M.J., Eagan, M.K., Lin, M.H., and Hurtado, S. (2011). Considering the impact of racial stigmas and science identity: Persistence among biomedical and behavioral science aspirants. Journal of Higher Education, 82(5), 564-596.
  4. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (2016). Barriers and Opportunities for 2-Year and 4-Year STEM Degrees: Systemic Change to Support Students' Diverse Pathways. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. http://www.nap.edu/catalog/21739/barriers-and-opportunities-for-2-year-and-4-year-stem-degrees
  5. National Science Board (2010). Preparing the Next Generation of STEM Innovators: Identifying and Developing Our Nation's Human Capital (2010). NSB-10-33. https://www.nsf.gov/publications/pub_summ.jsp?ods_key=nsb1033.

Dear Colleague Letter: NSF Accepting Proposals Related to Hurricane Irma

Friday, September 29, 2017

NSF 17-135

September 18, 2017

Dear Colleagues:

With the second major hurricane – Hurricane Irma – to strike the United States, the National Science Foundation (NSF) and its staff remain strongly committed to supporting the people and institutions affected by these storms. Now that the consequences of these disasters are upon us, new science and engineering questions are being raised. Through this Dear Colleague Letter, NSF encourages the submission of proposals that seek to address the challenges related to Hurricane Irma. NSF also will support fundamental science and engineering research projects whose results may enable our country to better prepare for, respond to, recover from, or mitigate future catastrophic events. Research proposals relating to a better fundamental understanding of the impacts of the storm (both physical, biological and societal), human aspects of natural disasters (including first responders and the general public), emergency response methods, and approaches that promise to reduce future damage also are welcome.

With NSF support, researchers have a long history of advancing understanding and knowledge about natural and built environments, as well as the relationship between humans and their environments in the context of large-scale disasters. Fundamental science and technological advancements are vital to our continued improvement of disaster preparation and restoration. For example, NSF-funded research has advanced understanding of the mechanisms that cause levee failures, gained new knowledge on the performance of critical infrastructure, and supported efforts to improve flood water decontamination. Researchers also have improved our ability to better predict, with longer lead times, the path of tropical cyclones. NSF support for researchers has led to the deployment of underwater rescue robots in an effort to safeguard emergency workers, developed real-time flood potential models, conducted effectiveness assessments of oil plume dispersants, assessed and advised better hazard-resistant buildings, and developed liquefaction mitigation methods in response to earthquakes. In addition, NSF-funded researchers have made ground-breaking discoveries about the long-term psychological and emotional impacts of national disasters.

Multiple proposal mechanisms are available to conduct new research related to Hurricane Irma.

  • RAPID: Proposals focusing on projects with severe urgency with regard to availability of, or access to, data, facilities or specialized equipment, including quick-response research on natural disasters. RAPID proposal project descriptions are expected to be brief and may not exceed 5 pages, with a maximum request of $200K for one year, although many are much smaller. See the NSF Proposal and Award Policies and Procedures Guide (PAPPG) Chapter II.E.1 for instructions on preparation of a RAPID proposal. (https://www.nsf.gov/pubs/policydocs/pappg17_1/pappg_2.jsp#IIE1).
  • EAGER: Proposals to conduct fundamental research representing exploratory work in its early stages on untested, but potentially transformative, research ideas or approaches. This research may be considered especially "high risk-high payoff" in the sense that it, for example, involves radically different approaches, applies new expertise, or engages novel disciplinary or interdisciplinary perspectives. EAGER proposal project descriptions are expected to be brief, and may not exceed 8 pages. Requests may be up to $300K and with a maximum award duration of two years. See PAPPG Chapter II.E.2 for instructions on preparation of an EAGER proposal (https://www.nsf.gov/pubs/policydocs/pappg17_1/pappg_2.jsp#IIE2).
  • Supplements to existing awards: Small amounts of supplemental funding to existing awards may be requested. See PAPPG Chapter VI.E.4 for instructions on preparation of a supplemental funding request (https://www.nsf.gov/pubs/policydocs/pappg17_1/pappg_6.jsp#VIE4).

To submit a RAPID, EAGER or supplemental funding request, investigators must contact the NSF Program Officer most closely related to the proposal topic before submitting, to determine if the proposed activities meet NSF's guidelines for these types of submissions or whether the proposed work is more suitable for submission as an unsolicited proposal. The contact people listed below, one from each NSF directorate, can help investigators identify the appropriate Program Officer.

Proposals submitted pursuant to this DCL may request the use of NSF-funded advanced computing resources such as Blue Waters or Stampede2. In these cases, investigators must contact the NSF Office of Advanced Cyberinfrastructure (OAC) prior to submission of the proposal.

Proposals may be submitted at any time.

Investigators with general questions are advised to contact one of the following Directorate liaisons:

BIO: Elizabeth Blood, eblood [at] nsf [dot] gov, (703) 292-4349

CISE: David Corman, dcorman [at] nsf [dot] gov, (703) 292-8745

EHR: David Campbell, dcambel [at] nsf [dot] gov, (703) 292-5093

ENG: Joy Pauschke, jpauschk [at] nsf [dot] gov, (703) 292-7024

GEO: Mike Sieracki, msierack [at] nsf [dot] gov, (703) 292-7585

MPS: John Gillaspy, jgillasp [at] nsf [dot] gov, (703) 292-7173

OAC: Ed Walker, edwalker [at] nsf [dot] gov, (703) 292-4863

SBE: Robert (Bob) O'Connor, roconnor [at] nsf [dot] gov, (703) 292-7263

Signed by:

James Olds, AD BIO

James Kurose, AD CISE

James Lewis, AD EHR

Dawn Tilbury, AD ENG

William Easterling, AD GEO

James Ulvestad, AD MPS

Fay Cook, AD SBE

Suzanne Iacono, Office Head, OIA

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