NSF National Artificial Intelligence (AI) Research Institutes

The following is a limited submission opportunity with only TWO proposals from an Institution allowed.  If you are interested in this program please email Michelle Wonsey a single PDF by September 18, 2020 with the following pre-proposal requirements:

1.      A two-page summary that must include your research/project:

a.      goals
b.      objectives
c.       methods, and
d.      a short statement of competitiveness (i.e., what you think will discriminate your proposal from the competition, including anything you have done to pre-position yourself/your team for this funding opportunity)

2.      A pro forma budget, including any cost-sharing and facilities requirements and how you plan to meet them; use template: https://www.umass.edu/research/form/pro-forma-budget-template

3.      A short-form CV for the PI and each senior staff person

4.      Current and Pending Support of PI’s


Program Description:

The National AI Research Institutes program – a joint effort of NSF, USDA-NIFA, DHS S&T, DOT FHWA, and several industry partners – will fund Institutes comprising scientists, engineers, and educators united by a common focus on advancing the research frontiers in AI. AI Research Institutes will have as their primary focus the advancement of multidisciplinary, multi-stakeholder research on larger-scale, longer-time-horizon challenges in AI research than are supported in typical research grants. They will accelerate the development of transformational technologies by grounding that research in critical application sectors that can serve as motivation for foundational research advances and provide opportunities for the effective fielding of AI-powered innovation.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) has advanced tremendously and today promises personalized healthcare; enhanced national security; improved transportation; and more effective education, to name just a few benefits. Increased computing power, the availability of large datasets and streaming data, and algorithmic advances in machine learning (ML) have made it possible for AI research and development to create new sectors of the economy and revitalize industries. Continued advancement, enabled by sustained federal investment and channeled toward issues of national importance, holds the potential for further economic impact and quality-of-life improvements.

The 2019 update to the National Artificial Intelligence Research and Development Strategic Plan, informed by visioning activities in the scientific community as well as interaction with the public, identifies as its first strategic objective the need to make long-term investments in AI research in areas with the potential for long-term payoffs in AI. The President’s Council of Advisors for Science and Technology has published Recommendations for Strengthening American Leadership in Industries of the Future, including AI, and calls for new and sustained research in AI to drive science and technology progress. The National AI Research Institutes program enables longer-term research and U.S. leadership in AI through the creation of AI Research Institutes.

This program is a joint government effort between the National Science Foundation (NSF), U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science & Technology Directorate (S&T), and the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). New to the program this year are contributions from partners in U.S. industry who share in the government’s goal to advance national competitiveness through National AI Research Institutes. This year’s industry partners are Accenture, Amazon, Google, and Intel Corporation. This program solicitation invites proposals for full institutes that have a principal focus in one or more of the following themes, detailed in the Program Description:

  • Theme 1: Human-AI Interaction and Collaboration
  • Theme 2: AI Institute for Advances in Optimization
  • Theme 3: AI and Advanced Cyberinfrastructure
  • Theme 4: Advances in AI and Computer and Network Systems
  • Theme 5: AI Institute in Dynamic Systems
  • Theme 6: AI-Augmented Learning
  • Theme 7: AI to Advance Biology
  • Theme 8: AI-Driven Innovation in Agriculture and the Food System