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Division of Chemical, Bioengineering, Environmental, and Transport Systems

Environmental Sustainability

CONTACTS

Name Email Phone Room
Bruce  Hamilton bhamilto@nsf.gov (703) 292-7066  565 S  

To 2014 Applicants: Please note that NSF 13-1 explicitly states the requirements for addressing BOTH the Intellectual Merit (IM) and the Broader Impact (BI) review criteria for NSF proposals. In addition to addressing IM and BI separately in the Project Summary, a separate section on BI needs to be included in the Proposal Description (GPG: "The Project Description must contain, as a separate section within the narrative, a discussion of the broader impacts of the proposed activities") .  Furthermore, when reporting results from Prior NSF Support, two separate sections addressing explicitly IM and BI need to be included within this portion of the proposal. (GPG: " ... a summary of the results of the completed work, including accomplishments, described in two separate sections, related to the Intellectual Merit and Broader Impact activities supported by the award").

If any of these requirements (or any other requirement from NSF 13-1 document) are not met, the proposal will not pass the NSF compliance check and will be returned without review. We would like to avoid such unfortunate instances for our Division.

PROGRAM GUIDELINES

Apply to PD 14-7643 as follows:

For full proposals submitted via FastLane: standard Grant Proposal Guidelines apply.
For full proposals submitted via Grants.gov: NSF Grants.gov Application Guide; A Guide for the Preparation and Submission of NSF Applications via Grants.gov Guidelines apply (Note: The NSF Grants.gov Application Guide is available on the Grants.gov website and on the NSF website at: http://www.nsf.gov/publications/pub_summ.jsp?ods_key=grantsgovguide)

DUE DATES

Full Proposal Window:  January 15, 2015 - February 19, 2015

SYNOPSIS

The Environmental Sustainability program supports engineering research with the goal of promoting sustainable engineered systems that support human well-being and that are also compatible with sustaining natural (environmental) systems.  These systems provide ecological services vital for human survival.  The long-term viability of natural capital is critical for many areas of human endeavor.  Research in Environmental Sustainability typically considers long time horizons and may incorporate contributions from the social sciences and ethics.

This program supports engineering research that seeks to balance society's need to provide ecological protection and maintain stable economic conditions.  There are four principal general research areas which are supported, but others can be proposed by contacting the program director by email at:  bhamilto@nsf.gov

  • Industrial Ecology
  • Green Engineering
  • Ecological Engineering
  • Earth Systems Engineering

Topics of interest in Industrial Ecology include advancements in modeling such as life cycle assessment, materials flow analysis, input/output economic models, and novel metrics for measuring sustainable systems.  Innovations in industrial ecology are encouraged. 

In Green Engineering, research is encouraged to advance the sustainability of manufacturing processes, green buildings, and infrastructure.  Many programs in the Engineering Directorate support research in environmentally benign manufacturing or chemical processes.  The Environmental Sustainability program supports research that would affect more than one chemical or manufacturing process or that takes a systems or holistic approach to green engineering for infrastructure or green buildings.  Improvements in distribution and collection systems that will advance smart growth strategies and ameliorate effects of growth are research areas that are supported by Environmental Sustainability.  Innovations in prevention and management of storm water, recycling and reuse of drinking water, and other green engineering techniques to support sustainable construction projects may also be fruitful areas for research.

NOTE:  For proposals involving any aspect of chemistry, including but not limited to biochemistry or physical chemistry, consider making proposal submissions to this program (7643) with the Proposal Title as:  ‘SusChEM: Name of Your Proposal'.  See SusChEM - New NSF Emphasis Area.  Likewise for proposals involving sustainable engineering.

Ecological Engineering topics should focus on the engineering aspects of restoring ecological function to natural systems.  Engineering research in enhancement of natural capital to foster sustainable development is encouraged.  Many communities are involved in stream restoration, revitalization of urban rivers, and rehabilitation of wetlands that require engineering input.  What is the fundamental engineering knowledge that is necessary for ecological engineering to function sustainability?

Earth Systems Engineering considers aspects of large scale engineering research that involve mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions, adaptation to climate change, and other global scale concerns.

All proposed research should be driven by engineering principles, and be presented explicitly in an environmental sustainability context.  Proposals should include involvement in engineering research of at least one graduate student, as well as undergraduates.  Incorporation of aspects of social, behavioral, and economic sciences is welcomed.

The duration of unsolicited awards is generally one to three years.  The average annual award size for the program is $100,000.  Proposals requesting a substantially higher amount than this, without prior consultation with the Program Director, may be returned without review. 

Innovative proposals outside of these specific interest areas can be considered.  However, prior to submission, it is recommended that the PI contact the Program Director to avoid the possibility of the proposal being returned without review.

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INFORMATION COMMON TO MOST CBET PROGRAMS

Proposals should address the novelty and/or potentially transformative nature http://www.nsf.gov/about/transformative_research/faq.jsp  of the concept being proposed, compared to previous work in the field.  Also, it is important to address why the proposed work is important in terms of engineering science, as well as to also project the potential impact on society and /or industry of success in the research.  The novelty or potentially transformative nature of the research should be included, as a minimum, in the Project Summary of each proposal.

Proposals submitted to this program are subject to the scope of the program's description and the availability of funds.  Decisions about particular proposals are often very difficult to make and factors other than reviewer comments and ratings enter into the decision.  Comments by a reviewer must sometimes be considered in the context of other reviews by the same person. The Program Director often has additional information not available to reviewers (such as project reports). Maintaining appropriate balance among subfields, the availability of other funding, the total amount of funds available to the program, and general Foundation policies and priorities are also important decision factors. 

Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) program proposals are strongly encouraged.  Award duration is five years.  The submission deadline for Engineering CAREER proposals is in July every year. Please see the following URL for more information:  http://www.nsf.gov/funding/pgm_summ.jsp?pims_id=503214

Proposals for Conferences, Workshops, and Supplements:  Proposals involving these activities should ideally be submitted during the regular annual proposal window.  PIs are strongly encouraged to discuss their requests with the Program Director before submission of the proposal.

Grants for Rapid Response Research (RAPID) and EArly-concept Grants for Exploratory Research (EAGER) are also considered when appropriate.  Please note that proposals of these types must be discussed with the Program Director before submission.  Further details are available in the Proposal and Award Policies and Procedures Guide (PAPPG) download.

Unsolicited proposals received outside of the Announced Proposal Window dates will be returned without review.

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THIS PROGRAM IS PART OF

Environmental Engineering and Sustainability


What Has Been Funded (Recent Awards Made Through This Program, with Abstracts)

Map of Recent Awards Made Through This Program

News



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