NSF

NSF Launches Regional Innovation Engines Program at New Directorate

The National Science Foundation’s (NSF) Directorate for Technology, Innovation, and Partnerships (TIP) has announced the establishment of a new program and funding opportunity called the NSF Regional Innovation Engines, or NSF Engines. This new program – touting its three core functions as use-inspired research, translation of innovation results to society, and workforce development – aims to develop technology and innovation hubs throughout regions of the United States to bolster economic growth and address societal challenges. The NSF Engines program will provide up to $160 million for up to 10 years to establish each Engine and embed them within the ecosystem…

White House Compiles Federal Equity Action Plans

The White House has published a list of equity action plans that have been developed by various federal agencies in order to comply with President Biden’s Executive Order on Advancing Racial Equity and Support for Underserved Communities Through the Federal Government (E.O. 13985) issued on the first day of his term (see previous coverage for more details). According to the White House announcement, more than 90 federal agencies across the government were consulted to contribute to the equity action plans to address where barriers to accessing federal programs may exist and identify changes to federal policy that could be made….

NSF Announces Research Security Activities for 2022-23

As part of its budget request for fiscal year (FY) 2023 (see related article), the National Science Foundation (NSF) announced its intent to commission a JASON study this year, during FY 2022, “to provide guidance on the establishment of a Research on Research Security funding program” that would begin in FY 2023. According to the budget materials, NSF would conduct several activities related to research security in 2023, including: Work with other federal research agencies “to establish uniform mechanisms for research investigators to provide agencies with consistent information on their appointments, activities, and sources of financial support.” Stand up the…

NSF Establishes New Technology Directorate

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has announced the creation of its first new research directorate in over 30 years, the Directorate for Technology, Innovation, and Partnerships (TIP). The new Directorate will support “use-inspired” research with the goal of “fostering innovation and technology ecosystems, establishing translation pathways, and partnering across sectors to engage the nation’s diverse talent.” In addition to new investments, the directorate will transfer several existing NSF programs into TIP, including the NSF Lab-to-Market Platform comprising the NSF Innovation Corps (I-Corps), Partnerships for Innovation, and America’s Seed Fund powered by NSF , as well as the NSF Convergence Accelerator. Dr. Erwin Gianchandani, who has…

Rayvon Fouché Begins Appointment as NSF’s SES Division Director

On February 28, the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) Social and Economic Sciences (SES) Division saw a change of leadership as Dr. Rayvon Fouché took the helm of the division. Fouché, a science and technology studies researcher and professor at Purdue University, succeeds the previous division director Daniel Goroff who led the division from 2019 through 2021. The SES Division is responsible for many of the key social and behavioral science research programs within the Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences (SBE) Directorate at NSF. More information is available on the NSF website.

NSF Announces New “Open-Source Ecosystems” Program

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has established a new interdisciplinary program called “Pathways to Enable Open-Source Ecosystems” (POSE), which is intended to “harness the power of open-source development for the creation of new technology solutions to problems of national and societal importance.” The program will fund the establishment of entities to manage networks of open-source products and platforms with the goal of ensuring “more secure open-source products, increased coordination of developer contributions, and a more focused route to impactful technologies.” The program will accept two types of proposals: Phase I projects, focused on “scoping” the development of a potential Open-Source…

House Passes Innovation, NSF Legislation, Setting Stage for Negotiations with Senate

On February 4, the House of Representatives passed the America Creating Opportunities for Manufacturing Pre-Eminence in Technology and Economic Strength (COMPETES) Act of 2022 (H.R. 4521). The nearly 3,000-page package is the product of months of work across several House Committees on a suite of bills related to advancing the U.S. STEM enterprise and shoring up U.S. scientific competitiveness, especially with respect to China. The bill includes a range of provisions, including a reauthorization of the National Science Foundation (NSF), research security directives, initiatives aimed at broadening participation in science, and combatting sexual and other forms of harassment. COSSA has…

NSF to Fund New Research Data System Resource

The National Science Foundation’s (NSF) Directorate for Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences (SBE) has announced the establishment of a new data platform to “modernize data collection and management to maximize the scientific value of people-centered data, enabling efficient and innovative multidisciplinary research focused on serving society and improving the lives of people in the U.S.” Funded under NSF’s Mid-Scale Research Infrastructure II program (see previous coverage), the University of Michigan’s Institute for Social Research will establish a Research Data Ecosystem: A National Resource for Reproducible, Robust, and Transparent Social Science Research in the 21st Century. More details about the new…

Nominations Open for the National Medal of Science

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has released a call for nominations for the 2022 National Medal of Science, the highest scientific honor in the United States, which recognizing outstanding individuals’ contributions to science, including to the physical, biological, mathematical, engineering, and behavioral or social sciences. Candidates will be considered on the following criteria: The impact of an individual’s body of work on science; The significance of an individual’s achievements on the development of through in science; Distinguished service in the general advancement of science; Recognition by peers within the scientific community; Contributions to innovation and industry; Influence on education through…

NSF Announces Topics for 2022 Convergence Accelerator, Agency Seeking Feedback on Future Topics

On January 4, the National Science Foundation (NSF) announced the topics for the Convergence Accelerator for fiscal year (FY) 2022, applications for which are expected to open in the coming months. NSF’s Convergence Accelerator aims to promote research in areas of strategic and societal importance through a three-tiered process: ideation, and two convergence research phases. The tracks for FY 2022 are: Enhancing Opportunities for Persons with Disabilities Sustainable Materials for Global Challenges Food & Nutrition Security In addition, NSF has announced it is seeking community feedback for future Convergence Accelerator topics. On December 13, 2021, NSF released a Dear Colleague…

NSF Announces Partnership with WT Grant Foundation on Enhancing the Impact of Research about Youth

In December, the Directorate for Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences (SBE) within the National Science Foundation (NSF) issued a Dear Colleague Letter announcing a partnership with the William T. Grant Foundation to solicit research proposals on “Increasing the Use, Usefulness and Impact of Research about Youth.” Research topics may cover improving decision-makers’ use of research, making research more useful in policy creation and practice, and identifying when and how using research findings improves youth outcomes. Proposals may be submitted to either NSF or the WT Grant Foundation. More information is available in the Dear Colleague Letter. Additional research opportunities supported…

NSF Announces Build and Broaden 3.0 Collaborations with Minority-Serving Institutions

The Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences (SBE) Directorate at the National Science Foundation (NSF) is accepting applications for Build and Broaden 3.0, the latest iteration of the collaborative program aiming to support fundamental research and research collaborations at minority-serving institutions (MSIs). Updates on the Build and Broaden program were featured during the SBE Advisory Committee meeting on December 2, with NSF staff providing comments on previous fiscal year awards, updated eligibility criteria for the awards, outreach efforts to tribal-serving institutions, and the creation of a new Program Officer role for Build and Broaden 3.0. The target due date for Build…

Participants Sought for NSF-Funded January Bioeconomies Workshop

UIDP is hosting a virtual workshop January 11-12, with support from the National Science Foundation (NSF), to bring together an interdisciplinary group of scientists from the public and private sectors who understand and support societal, economic, behavioral, and other challenges and opportunities that arise in developing a bioeconomy ecosystem. The workshop will convene experts from academia, industry, and public and private sectors to explore societal, economic, behavioral, regulatory, and other challenges and opportunities to help design bioeconomy innovation hubs, such as Regional Innovation Accelerators proposed by NSF, and develop a bioeconomy ecosystem that spurs innovation, entrepreneurship, economic growth, and social…

House Science Committee Approves NSF Spending in Reconciliation Package

On September 9, the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee met to pass a set of spending recommendations that allocate $45.5 billion in fiscal year (FY) 2022 spending as part of the House Democrats’ wide-reaching “Build Back Better” plan. The $3.5 trillion in total proposed spending (over 5-10 years) would be passed as part of the budget reconciliation process (which removes several procedural hurdles to passing such legislation) and would be in addition to regular FY 2022 appropriations (see COSSA’s analysis of the House’s FY 2022 appropriations bills here). The Science Committee’s recommendations would provide the National Science Foundation (NSF)…

NSF Awards “America’s Data Hub” Contract

The National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics (NCSES) within the National Science Foundation (NSF) has awarded a contract to establish the America’s Data Hub Consortium, a network intended to “strengthen, support, and advance the NCSES mission by engaging in ground-breaking activities related to data access and sharing, infrastructure, and analysis across the broad landscape of the science and engineering enterprise.” The contract was awarded to Advanced Technology International, a nonprofit R&D collaboration firm. The Consortium’s primary objectives are to “Develop new ways of acquiring and linking data to yield valuable insights into critical issues Support cutting-edge data infrastructure Build…

OSTP and NSF Request Input on National Resource for Artificial Intelligence Research

The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) and the National Science Foundation (NSF) have issued a request for information (RFI) developing an implementation roadmap for a shared artificial intelligence (AI) research infrastructure. The RFI was issued through the National Artificial Intelligence Research Resource Task Force, which was directed by Congress to establish a “shared research infrastructure that would provide Artificial Intelligence (AI) researchers and students across scientific disciplines with access to computational resources, high-quality data, educational tools, and user support.” More information about the RFI is available in the Federal Register notice. Comments are due by October…

NSF Seeks Candidates for SBE Leadership Positions

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has initiated a national search for its next Assistant Director for the Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences (SBE) Directorate. Dr. Arthur Lupia has served in this position since 2018. The Assistant Director for SBE oversees the directorate, which includes the Division of Behavioral and Cognitive Sciences, the Division of Social and Economic Sciences, the SBE Office of Multidisciplinary Activities, and the National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics. The search committee will be led by Robert Groves, Executive Vice President and Provost at Georgetown University, and is seeking candidates with outstanding leadership capabilities; a deep…

EHR Director to Take on NSF COO Role

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has named Dr. Karen Marrongelle as its next Chief Operating Office (COO) effective August 2, succeeding F. Fleming Crim, who has served in this role since 2018. Dr. Marrongelle has served as the Assistant Director for the Education and Human Resources (EHR) Directorate since 2018. In a statement accompanying the announcement, NSF Director Sethuraman Panchanathan said, “Karen Marrongelle is a strong and innovative leader with a proven track record of excellence and accomplishments.  I am delighted to have her taking on this important role at an amazing time for NSF.”

SBE Seeks New Director for Social and Economic Sciences Division

The National Science Foundation (NSF) is accepting applications for the position of Division Director for the Social and Economic Sciences (SES) Division within the Directorate for Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences (SBE). The Division Director “serves as a member of the directorate’s leadership team and as a principal NSF spokesperson for social and economic sciences.” More information on the position can be found in the Dear Colleague Letter from SBE. Applications may be submitted through USAJOBS and are being accept through August 6, 2021.

NSF Soliciting Nominations for 2022 Waterman Award

The National Science Foundation (NSF) is accepting nominations for the Alan T. Waterman Award, the highest honor awarded by the NSF to early-career researchers. The annual award recognizes an outstanding young researcher, 40 years of age or younger or no more than 10 years beyond receipt of their Ph.D., in any field of science or engineering supported by the National Science Foundation. In addition to a medal, the awardee receives a grant of $1,000,000 over a five-year period for scientific research or advanced study in the mathematical, physical, biological, engineering, social or other sciences at the institution of the recipient’s choice….

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