National Science Foundation
4201 Wilson Boulevard
Arlington, Virginia 22230
Questions and Answers Regarding the Cyber Trust Solicitation (NSF
Question: I have several ideas I think might be
suitable for funding under Cyber Trust, and several potential collaborators
have contacted me. Is there any limit on the number of proposals I
can submit to the Cyber Trust solicitation?
Answer: Yes. You may appear as PI, co-PI, or senior
personnel on at most TWO proposals submitted to the Cyber Trust solicitation.
- Question: I had intended to submit a proposal to
the Trusted Computing (or Data and Application Security) program this
year. Can I submit to Cyber Trust instead?
Answer: Yes. Trusted Computing and Data and Application
Security are not accepting submissions this year, but the topics covered
in Trusted Computing and Data and Application Security are within the
scope of the broader Cyber Trust program. It would be wise to read the
Cyber Trust announcement, however, and consider revisions to your proposal
before submitting it.
- Question: I want to work with one other PI. Can
we propose a "Single Investigator" grant?
Answer: Yes. Please note revisions to the solicitation--these
are now "Single Investigator or Small Group" awards.
- Question: Is a team proposal required to include
participants from different institutions?
Answer: There is no requirement that teams include members
from different institutions.
- Question: Can a for-profit organization participate
in a proposal?
Answer: Yes, if the participation meets the guidelines specified
in the NSF Grant Proposal Guide (see GPG Chapter I.C.3 http://www.nsf.gov/pubs/2004/nsf042/1.htm#IC
- Question: Can a foreign institution participate
in a proposal?
Answer: Yes, under conditions specified in the NSF Grant Proposal
Guide(see GPG Chapter I.C.6 http://www.nsf.gov/pubs/2004/nsf042/1.htm#IC
- Question: I have a question about details of the
20% cost sharing required in proposals for center-scale activities.
Who can answer questions on cost sharing?
Answer: Questions about cost sharing in general should be submitted
by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Questions
about the calculation of cost sharing for this program solicitation
should be submitted to the cognizant NSF program officer listed in the
The following example shows how the amount of cost sharing is calculated
if the total project cost is $1,200,000. The proposal should request
$1,000,000 from NSF, and, if NSF agrees to fund the project at that
level, then the proposer must provide 20% of that amount, which is $200,000.
The amount of $1,000,000 should be entered on Line J of the proposal
budget, and the amount of $200,000 should be entered on Line M of the
proposal budget. The total project cost of $1,200,0000 is not entered
on the proposal budget, but must be described in the proposal and justified
in the budget justification.
- Question: I've noticed that the FY04 ITR solicitation
seeks research on "National Priority Areas", including National
and Homeland Security, which includes aspects of critical infrastructure
protection. The areas of interest in the Cyber Trust solicitation (NSF
04-524) seem to overlap somewhat with this priority area. Can you
help me decide which competition is the appropriate one for my proposal?
Which competition is likely to have a higher success rate?
Answer: There are indeed some common interests in the two programs,
and both encourage multidisciplinary proposals. In general, disciplinary
work that seeks primarily to advance resistance of computer-based systems
to malicious acts should be submitted to Cyber Trust, as should multi-disciplinary
work that seeks to understand/model how economic, legal, social, human-interface,
affects the adoption of technology that specifically aims to improve
component or system performance in the face of malicious attacks. Work
in which the concern with preventing, tolerating, or recovering from
malicious acts is a relatively minor focus and work that focuses primarily
on advancing the dependability of critical infrastructures (including
computer, communications, and control infrastructures) in general, without
specific focus on malicious acts, would more appropriately be submitted
to the ITR competition. ITR is also encouraging research that seeks
to understand and recover from threats to national security, such as
collaborative knowledge environments for the management of dynamic information,
disease informatics, and search-and-rescue robots.
As always, NSF will strive to obtain appropriate and fair reviews for
all proposals, regardless of the competition to which they are submitted.
Although the number of awards may be roughly predicted for both competitions
based on available budgets, the success ratios will depend heavily on
the number of proposals received, which is difficult for NSF to foresee.
- Question: Are proposals focused specifically on
education and workforce development within scope for Cyber Trust?
Answer: As the solicitation indicates, each proposal must specifically
describe its education and workforce development contributions. However,
proposals that focus solely on education and workforce development (e.g.,
a proposal for curriculum development and establishing a teaching laboratory,
without a significant research component) should be submitted to other
more appropriate NSF solicitations, such as CRCD/EI (NSF
04-001), ITWF (NSF
03-609), SFS (NSF
04-505), and ATE (NSF
- Question: I notice that the awards made under this
solicitation are subject to the stipulations of P.L. 107-305, the Cyber
Security Research and Development Act. How does this restrict the nationality
of the graduate students and faculty who may participate?
Answer: Section 16 of P.L. 107-305 limits grant eligibility
(for example, no grant or fellowship may be awarded "to any alien
from a country that is a state sponsor of international terrorism, as
defined under section 306(b) of the Enhanced Border Security and VISA
Entry Reform Act (8 U.S.C. 1735(b))". In addition, awards cannot
be made to an institution that "has materially failed to comply
with the recordkeeping and reporting requirements to receive nonimmigrant
students or exchange visitor program participants" under specified
sections of immigration laws.
Full text of the law is available from the Library of Congress's Thomas
http://thomas.loc.gov/ select "Bill
Text", then Select Congress "107", then enter "HR
3394" (without quotes) into the Bill Number search box and click
"Search". Six links should be returned; click on the last
one (should be:[H.R.3394.ENR]). See Section 16.