National Science Foundation
Developing Country Collaborations in Plant Genome Research (DCC-PGR)
This letter is to call your attention to an opportunity that will support research collaboration between US scientists and scientists in developing countries as part of ongoing or new Plant Genome Research Program awards. The intent of DCC-PGR awards is to support collaborative research linking US researchers with partners from developing countries to solve problems of mutual interest in agriculture, energy and the environment, while placing US and international researchers at the center of a global network of scientific excellence.
The long-term goal of these collaborative research efforts is a greater and sustained engagement with developing countries in plant biotechnology research. In order to realize the full potential of biotechnology for the developing world, the technology must target crops grown locally in the developing countries and the traits that are most relevant to the local farmers and consumers. At the same time, proposals should meet the broad goals of the PGRP described in the current Program Solicitation. Of special interest are those research projects that build on prior PGRP investments and that tackle problems specific to crops grown in the developing world.
A request for supplemental funding should be made under an existing PGRP award. Support can also be requested within a proposal for a new or renewal PGRP award. Proposed collaborative activities are encouraged that focus on research problems important to developing countries and that include scientist-to-scientist interactions potentially leading to long-term partnerships among participating laboratories. The exchange of ideas and people should be reciprocal and should be built on equal partnerships among U.S. scientists and scientists of developing nations. Examples of activities to be supported would include, but not be limited to: joint research projects; and long-term (1 year) or short-term (1-3 months) exchange visits that are reciprocal exchanges of investigators and students between the US and developing countries. Collaborations should be developed that bring complementary sets of expertise to bear on problems of importance to the participants from developing countries, and that meet their identified needs.
Funding: The DCC-PGR supplements will generally be for up to a total of $100,000 for up to two years, although larger amounts and longer award durations will be considered if well justified. NSF funds may be used for:
NSF funds may not be used to support research and training activities of the developing country scientists and students at their home institution. However, these are important activities and NSF encourages proposers to seek additional support for them from non-NSF sources.
Proposers are also encouraged to seek non-NSF sources for funds that would enable sustained research collaboration after the NSF support has ended.
Eligibility: All currently active PGRP awardees are eligible to apply for a supplement under this Dear Colleague Letter. Scientists at institutions from “Developing Countries” listed in the appendix are eligible to be partners with the PGRP Principle Investigators.
Assistance in identifying potential partner scientists and institutions in developing countries can be requested from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID.) USAID supports collaborative plant biotechnology research programs involving many developing countries partners, universities and other research institutions in the U.S., and the International Agricultural Research Centers sponsored by the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR.) Contacts in these and related organizations may be helpful in developing research collaboration relevant to crop improvement and other activities seeking solutions to agricultural, energy and environmental problems in developing countries. For information, please contact:
Dr. Larry Beach, Biotechnology Advisor, Office of Environment and Science Policy, USAID, telephone: 202-712-4049, email:firstname.lastname@example.org
For some countries on the list, NSF program officers in the Office of International Science and Engineering (OISE) may have knowledge of researchers, institutions, or funding mechanisms that could be helpful to prospective PI's seeking to develop a research collaboration. For assistance, please contact:
Dr. Frances Li, Senior Staff Associate, Office of International Science and Engineering, NSF, telephone: (703) 292-8710, email: email@example.com
Proposal submission: Supplemental requests can be submitted at any time. Please allow 4 to 6 months for review. Investigators submitting new or renewal proposals for the FY2006 PGRP (http://www.nsf.gov/funding/pgm_summ.jsp?pims_id=5338&org=DBI&from=home) and future target dates are encouraged to integrate this activity into the proposals.
New or renewal proposals being submitted to the PGRP competition and containing this activity should follow the guidelines described in the appropriate program solicitation at http://www.nsf.gov/funding/pgm_summ.jsp?pims_id=5338&org=DBI&from=home. Applicants are encouraged to develop DCC-PGR activities that are integrated into the overall research theme of the proposed PGRP project.
The description of DCC-PGR project activities should include the following information:
The award decision for supplement requests will be based on internal review by the Program Directors and availability of funds. Larger request may require external review.
James P. Collins
Presence of a USAID mission (all caps)
The National Science Foundation, 4201 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, Virginia 22230, USA