The following is a limited submission opportunity for the National Science Foundation's National Research Traineeship program. Participation in the NRT competition is limited to two proposals per institution. NOTE: Participation includes serving as a lead organization, non-lead organization, or subawardee on any proposal.
If you are interested please email Michelle Wonsey (firstname.lastname@example.org) with intent to submit by Monday, September 30, 2019 with the following information in a single PDF:
A two-page project summary that must include:
- Vision and goals of the proposed training program, including a brief description of the interdisciplinary research theme, the main training elements, the integration of the research and training,
- The names(s) of any other (non-lead) participating institutions or organizations.
- 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)
- 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
- A short-form CV for the PI and each senior staff person
IMPORTANT CHANGES to the NRT Solicitation:
There is a new requirement to address institutional partnerships in the letter of intent. The letter of intent requires prescribed language that all partner institutions have been informed by the lead institution that their involvement may impact their institutional eligibility limits or that no partner institutions, aside from an evaluator, will be involved in the project.
For FY2019 and FY2020, the NRT Program requests proposals in any interdisciplinary research theme of national priority, with special emphasis on the six research areas within NSF's 10 Big Ideas. The NSF research Big Ideas are Harnessing the Data Revolution (HDR), The Future of Work at the Human-Technology Frontier (FW-HTF), Navigating the New Arctic (NNA), Windows on the Universe: The Era of Multi-Messenger Astrophysics (WoU), The Quantum Leap: Leading the Next Quantum Revolution (QL), and Understanding the Rules of Life: Predicting Phenotype (URoL).
Proposals that align with one of the NSF Research Big Ideas should contain a title to reflect that alignment, as described in the program solicitation (e.g. NRT-HDR: title or NRT-QL: title).
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 science, technology, engineering and mathematics (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 or convergent research areas, through the use of a comprehensive traineeship model that is innovative, evidence-based, and aligned with changing workforce and research needs. Proposals are requested in any interdisciplinary or convergent research theme of national priority, with special emphasis on the research areas in NSF's 10 Big Ideas. The NSF research Big Ideas are Harnessing the Data Revolution (HDR), The Future of Work at the Human-Technology Frontier (FW-HTF), Navigating the New Arctic (NNA), Windows on the Universe: The Era of Multi-Messenger Astrophysics (WoU), The Quantum Leap: Leading the Next Quantum Revolution (QL), and Understanding the Rules of Life: Predicting Phenotype (URoL).
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 Inclusion across the Nation of Communities of Learners of Underrepresented Discoverers in Engineering and Science (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.
NRT Awards (14-15 anticipated in FY2020) are expected to be up to five (5) years in duration with a total budget up to $3,000,000.
Limit on Number of Proposals per Organization: 2
An eligible organization may participate in two proposals per competition. Participation includes serving as a lead organization, non-lead organization, or subawardee on any proposal. Organizations participating solely as evaluators on projects are excluded from this limitation. Proposals that exceed the institutional eligibility limit (beyond the first two submissions based on timestamp) will be returned without review regardless of the institution’s role (lead organization, non-lead collaborative, or subawardee) in the returned proposal.
Limit on Number of Proposals per PI or Co-PI: 1
An individual may serve as Lead Principal Investigator (PI) or Co-PI on only one proposal submitted to the NRT program per annual competition. Proposals that exceed the PI/Co-PI eligibility limit (beyond the first submission based on timestamp), will be returned without review regardless of the individual's role (PI or co-PI) in the returned proposal.
Key Features of NRT Projects
NRT projects utilize comprehensive approaches to graduate training and are expected to address several key features central to the NRT Program.
- Development of innovative and potentially transformative approaches to STEM graduate education, informed by evidence;
- Extension of NRT program elements to non-NRT-funded trainees and to non-trainees to benefit a larger population of STEM graduate students across an institution;
- Dissemination of outcomes and gained insights from NRT training approaches;
- Facilitation and advancement of novel, potentially transformative interdisciplinary or convergent research in areas of high priority to the nation;
- Comprehensive training of STEM graduate students, including the development of technical and professional skills for both research and research-related careers within and outside academia;
- Incorporation of evidence-based strategies to broaden participation of students from diverse backgrounds; and
- Implementation of robust formative assessment that is central to the traineeship and routinely informs and improves practice.
Priority Research Areas
The NRT Program requests proposals in any interdisciplinary or convergent research theme of national priority, while highlighting specific priority research areas that change periodically. For FY2019 and FY2020, the high priority research areas are the six research areas in NSF's 10 Big Ideas. The NSF research Big Ideas are Harnessing the Data Revolution (HDR), The Future of Work at the Human-Technology Frontier (FW-HTF), Navigating the New Arctic (NNA), Windows on the Universe: The Era of Multi-Messenger Astrophysics (WoU), The Quantum Leap: Leading the Next Quantum Revolution (QL), and Understanding the Rules of Life: Predicting Phenotype (URoL).
Letters of Intent (required):
A compliant Letter of Intent (LOI) submitted by the lead institution only is required for proposal submission. Limits on the number of proposals submitted per institution and per PI/co-PI also apply to the LOI (see Section IV). LOIs are used to gauge review requirements. No feedback is provided to submitters based on the LOI. The LOI should specify the project (in the project synopsis), project title and PI. Submission of a full proposal is contingent upon a compliant LOI being submitted by the deadline.
Submit a one-page LOI through FastLane during the open submission window with the following information:
- The name and departmental affiliation of the Principal Investigator (PI).
- The name(s) and departmental affiliation(s) of the co-PI(s) and others composing the Core Participants (maximum 10).
- The names(s) of any other (non-lead) participating institutions or organizations. If the sole contribution of the partner is evaluation, then designate as "Evaluation: institutional or organizational name"; evaluators are exempt from organizational eligibility limits (see section IV). If there are partnering organizations, then the LOI MUST include the appropriate mandatory statement at the end of the project synopsis (see Project Synopsis below).
- Project Title: Proposals that align with one of the six NSF research Big Ideas should contain a title to reflect that alignment (e.g. NRT-HDR: title or NRT-QL: title); see section II.D of this solicitation for appropriate priority area abbreviations. Titles for projects addressing another interdisciplinary theme of national importance must begin with "NRT:". Any separately submitted collaborative proposal should begin with "Collaborative Research:". For example, a collaborative proposal in HDR would have a title beginning "Collaborative Research: NRT-HDR:".
- Project Synopsis (up to 2500 text characters including required organizational statement): Provide a brief summary of the vision and goals of the proposed training program, including a brief description of the interdisciplinary or convergent research theme, the main training elements, the integration of the research and training, and the need for the program. Add the appropriate required partner organization statement at the end of the project synopsis. If the project has a partner organization that is not solely an evaluator, then the following text must appear at the end of the project synopsis: "The participating organizations have agreed to partner on this NRT project. The NRT-eligible organizations have been informed by the lead organization that serving as a non-lead organization or subawardee on a proposal where the organization appears in the budget will count toward their organizational eligibility limit of two NRT proposals per annual competition." NRT-eligible organizations are IHEs, accredited in and having a campus located in the US, that award a research-based master's degree and/or a doctoral degree in a STEM discipline supported by the National Science Foundation. If the project has no NRT-eligible partner organizations or if the only NRT-eligible organization solely has an evaluation role (and has been designated as such), then the following text is required at the end of the project synopsis: "There are no NRT-eligible organizations partnering on this project outside of an evaluation role."
- Target Disciplines: List up to 5 primary disciplinary areas contributing to the research focus.
Letter of Intent Preparation Instructions:
When submitting a Letter of Intent through FastLane in response to this Program Solicitation please note the conditions outlined below:
- Submission by an Authorized Organizational Representative (AOR) is required when submitting a Letter of Intent
- A Minimum of 0 and Maximum of 20 Other Participating Organizations are allowed
- A required statement concerning partner organizations and eligibility limits must be included in the program synopsis; see the instructions above for the appropriate text. Sponsored Projects Office (SPO) submission is taken as a certification that partner organizations have been notified and agreed to participate.
- Name and departmental affiliation of core participants (up to 10 including co-PIs) is required when submitting an LOI
- Include an appropriately formatted title that begins with the correct program prefix (e.g. NRT-FW-HTF:, NRT:, Collaborative Research: NRT-HDR:)
- Target disciplines that contribute to the research focus are required when submitting an LOI
- Submission of multiple LOIs for a single project is not allowed and each LOI is specific to the project, project title and PI.
SPONSOR DUE DATES:
Letter of Intent Due Date(s) (required) (due by 5 p.m. submitter’s local time):
November 25, 2019 – December 6, 2019
Full Proposal Deadline(s) (due by 5 p.m. submitter’s local time):
February 6, 2020