Theoretical Foundations 2008 (TF08)
Program Solicitation


Program Solicitation
NSF 08-518

Replaces Document(s):
NSF 07-525

 

NSF Logo

National Science Foundation

Directorate for Computer & Information Science & Engineering
     Division of Computing and Communication Foundations

 

Submission Window Date(s) (due by 5 p.m. proposer's local time):

March 12, 2008 - March 19, 2008

REVISION NOTES

In furtherance of the President's Management Agenda, NSF has identified programs that will offer proposers the option to utilize Grants.gov to prepare and submit proposals, or will require that proposers utilize Grants.gov to prepare and submit proposals. Grants.gov provides a single Government-wide portal for finding and applying for Federal grants online.

In response to this program solicitation, proposers may opt to submit proposals via Grants.gov or via the NSF FastLane system. In determining which method to utilize in the electronic preparation and submission of the proposal, please note the following:

Collaborative Proposals. All collaborative proposals submitted as separate submissions from multiple organizations must be submitted via the NSF FastLane system. Chapter II, Section D.3 of the Grant Proposal Guide provides additional information on collaborative proposals.

The following sections have undergone extensive revision:

Synopsis of Program, SECTIONS I. INTRODUCTION AND II. PROGRAM DESCRIPTION.

SUMMARY OF PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS

General Information

Program Title: 

Theoretical Foundations 2008  (TF08)
Program Solicitation

Synopsis of Program:

The Theoretical Foundations (TF) program supports basic research into the central issues underlying computer and information science and technology.  Research and education projects sponsored by the program strengthen the intellectual foundations of algorithms and theoretical computer science, cryptography, network and communication theory, information theory, numeric and scientific computing, signal processing, and geometric algorithms, and bring advanced mathematical capabilities from these areas to bear on fundamental problems throughout science and engineering.  The program encourages investigators to include in their proposals innovative curricula or educational materials to help advance the training of new experts in the cognate areas served by TF.

The TF program will support a number of new projects in FY 2008, ranging from modest projects with average annual budgets of $60,000 all the way through well-integrated, multi-investigator projects with annual budgets in the $500,000 to $1,000,000 range.

Cognizant Program Officer(s):

  • Richard Beigel, Theory of Computing, telephone: (703) 292-8910, email: rbeigel@nsf.gov

  • John Cozzens, Signal Processing Systems, telephone: (703) 292-8910, email: jcozzens@nsf.gov

  • Lenore Mullin, Numeric, Symbolic & Geometric Computing, telephone: (703) 292-8910, email: lmullin@nsf.gov

  • Robert Grafton, Numeric, Symbolic & Geometric Computing, telephone: (703) 292-8910, email: rgrafton@nsf.gov

  • Eun Park, Scientific Foundations for Internet's Next Generation (SING), telephone: (703) 292-8910, email: epark@nsf.gov

  • Sirin Tekinay, Communications Research, SING, telephone: (703) 292-8910, email: stekinay@nsf.gov

Applicable Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number(s):

  • 47.070 --- Computer and Information Science and Engineering

Award Information

Anticipated Type of Award:  Standard Grant or Continuing Grant

Estimated Number of Awards:    60 to  75   new awards

Anticipated Funding Amount:   $35,000,000  subject to the availability of funds

Eligibility Information

Organization Limit: 

None Specified

PI Limit: 

None Specified

Limit on Number of Proposals per Organization: 

None Specified

Limit on Number of Proposals per PI: 2 

An investigator may participate as PI, Co-PI, or Senior Personnel in at most two proposals in response to this solicitation.

Proposal Preparation and Submission Instructions

A. Proposal Preparation Instructions

  • Letters of Intent: Not Applicable
  • Preliminary Proposal Submission: Not Applicable
  • Full Proposals:

    • Full Proposals submitted via FastLane: NSF Proposal and Award Policies and Procedures Guide, Part I: Grant Proposal Guide (GPG) Guidelines apply. The complete text of the GPG is available electronically on the NSF website at: http://www.nsf.gov/publications/pub_summ.jsp?ods_key=gpg.

    • 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/bfa/dias/policy/docs/grantsgovguide.pdf)

B. Budgetary Information

  • Cost Sharing Requirements: Cost Sharing is not required under this solicitation.  
  • Indirect Cost (F&A) Limitations:  Not Applicable
  • Other Budgetary Limitations: Not Applicable

C. Due Dates

  • Submission Window Date(s) (due by 5 p.m. proposer's local time): 

    March 12, 2008 - March 19, 2008

Proposal Review Information Criteria

Merit Review Criteria:   National Science Board approved criteria apply.

Award Administration Information

Award Conditions:   Standard NSF award conditions apply

Reporting Requirements:   Standard NSF reporting requirements apply

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Summary of Program Requirements

  1. Introduction

  2. Program Description

  3. Award Information

  4. Eligibility Information

  5. Proposal Preparation and Submission Instructions
    1. Proposal Preparation Instructions
    2. Budgetary Information
    3. Due Dates
    4. FastLane/Grants.gov Requirements

  6. NSF Proposal Processing and Review Procedures
    1. NSF Merit Review Criteria
    2. Review and Selection Process

  7. Award Administration Information
    1. Notification of the Award
    2. Award Conditions
    3. Reporting Requirements

  8. Agency Contacts

  9. Other Information

I. INTRODUCTION

The Theoretical Foundations (TF) program supports basic research into the central issues underlying computer and information science and technology. The program is broadly concerned with problems and questions that range from purely theoretical studies, on the one hand, to applications within various fields of science and technology, on the other. TF research and education projects strengthen the intellectual foundations of algorithms and theoretical computer science, cryptography, network and communication theory, information theory, numeric and scientific computing, signal processing, and geometric algorithms, and bring advanced mathematical capabilities from these areas to bear on fundamental problems throughout science and engineering.

II. PROGRAM DESCRIPTION

The TF program comprises five program elements: Communications Research; Numeric, Symbolic and Geometric Computing; Signal Processing Systems; Scientific Foundations for Internet’s Next Generation (SING); and, the Theory of Computing. The program supports research within the purview of these elements as well as research that spans multiple areas.

The program emphasizes the integration of research and education in all areas of interest. Principal investigators (PIs) range from researchers beginning their careers to senior investigators. Research that has the potential to strengthen the foundations of computer science is strongly encouraged.  Collaborations between theoretical computer science and other areas of computer science as well as with engineering, mathematics, statistics, and other sciences are also welcome. While each program element described below describes a set of specific topics, in some cases research opportunities extend beyond artificially imposed programmatic boundaries. Consequently, proposals that address cross-cutting research opportunities are also encouraged.

Communications Research

This program element seeks advances in theory and techniques for the secure and efficient representation, transmission and reception of digital and analog information over a variety of channels (e.g., wired line, mobile multi-antenna wireless, optical, and biological channels).  Research and education contributions to a) theory, b) algorithms, and c) applications based on new theoretical foundations are sought.

  1. Contributions in theory include those in: communication theory, information theory, and theoretical studies of mobility and traffic. An area of interest is modeling and analysis of the capacity and performance of communication systems, where non-traditional noise models for a variety of channels continue to play a crucial role. Network information theory, network coding, multi-user coding, source and channel coding are also of interest.  Research in multi-user communications is encouraged.  In particular, investigations into modulation and coding techniques that exploit the time, frequency and spatial dimensions of channels and MIMO channels are of interest.

  2. Research promoting advances in algorithms, for example, those that work across network layers such as multicast, broadcast, and geocast algorithms, is encouraged. 

  3. Applications based on new theoretical foundations, or new theory prompted by new applications are sought. Applications include those involving multi-sensory input, cooperative communications, and, in general, applications of communication and information theory in sensor systems.

Fundamental research efforts should aim at re-defining the reference framework for communications, in addition to cross layer research. 

Numeric, Symbolic and Geometric Computing

The numeric, symbolic and geometric (NSG) computing program element investigates the application of computing to mathematical objects, such as differential equations, algebraic structures, and geometric constructs.  The goal of NSG projects is increased understanding of computing through investigations in this domain.  The NSG program element is sub-divided into three areas: a) numerical computing and optimization; b) symbolic and algebraic computation; and c) computational geometry.   However, new ventures that combine numerical, algebraic, symbolic, and computational paradigms are especially welcome.

  1. Numerical computing and optimizations lie at the heart of scientific computing and computational sciences, and are essential to leverage the full potential of advanced architectures. Investigations into new data structures and algorithms that yield optimizations for particular applications are encouraged.

To support computational science in applications throughout science and engineering, research that integrates numerical computing and optimization into problem-solving environments is required. This includes the design and construction of high quality scientific software ideally adept across numerous scientific domains.

Specific research topics of interest include, but are not limited to, the following: numerical linear and multi-linear algebras, tensor algebras and decompositions used in memory hierarchy mappings; linear and non-linear optimization; modeling and simulation of complex processes; and numerical solutions of differential equations and PDE’s. Research in numerical computing and optimization has natural interdisciplinary applications. In fact, this program seeks applications in science and engineering whose basic problems actually require the development of new numerical and optimization methods.

  1. The genesis of the field of symbolic and algebraic computation was in the early symbolic manipulation programs.  Now, the intellectual work necessary to advance the field requires deep exploration at the intersection of computer science and mathematics. Research focused on finding powerful methods for symbolically solving algebraic - numeric systems that combine differential, integral and polynomial equations is required.  Interests include foundational research in algorithms and their efficient execution. Basic research topics include: computational algebra and analysis, computational number theory and algebraic geometry, integration of numeric and symbolic techniques, symbolic scientific applications and software. Fruitful application areas for symbolic computation include: cryptography, optimization, and the solution of complex equation sets.

  2. The field of computational geometry (CG) grew out of the need to solve problems in motion planning, the design of 3D objects, and the assessment of information in large databases. The design and analysis of new geometrical algorithms, as well as the creation of software and tools for doing geometric computations, are of interest.

The identification of CG techniques that will assist in exploring, segregating, analyzing, assessing and viewing data is of particular interest. This includes using deep mathematical ideas to develop new ideas and directions. Another research area of interest stems from the practical need for CG techniques that manage large-scale, distributed, networked, spatial-temporal geometric data acquired at a high rate. Additional applications that may motivate advances in computational geometry fundamentals include, for example, graphics, visualization, information systems, robotics, engineering design, molecular biology, astrophysics, and medicine.

Signal Processing Systems

This TF program element supports basic research in signal processing algorithms and supporting software and hardware systems that ensure signal processing remains an enabling technology for information systems and serves as a catalyst for new technological and theoretical innovations. Specific research topics of interest include, but are not limited to, the following: sampling/representation, compression and enhancement of both one dimensional and multidimensional spatio-temporal data; statistical signal and array processing; multimedia and multimodal signal processing precipitated by the needs of surveillance as well as the entertainment industry; signal processing for wireless communications; collaborative/distributed signal processing for sensor networks and other distributed systems; novel biometric signal/image processing methodologies for national security; signal processing for biomedical applications; signal processing methods inspired by fundamental biological processes including sequencing as well as cellular communication. Also of interest is research in new paradigms that enlarge the scope of signal processing from the domain of the linear to the realm of the nonlinear – from linear algebra to algebra, from Euclidean to curved spaces, from uniformly to highly non-uniformly time and space sampled processes, to signal processing on graphs.  Research that will develop efficient power aware and hardware-friendly algorithms and research on signal processing algorithms for the new network science of distributed, decentralized, and cooperative algorithms that avoid global communications is encouraged.  The exploration of new approaches to manage massive datasets, such as compressive sampling, also promise advances in the field.

The TF program is particularly interested in the application of signal processing in complex systems.  Examples include exciting new applications, from the “Glass-Wired World“ to monitoring the Nation’s Critical Infrastructures (see http://www.ece.wisc.edu/~nowak/ci).  These new application domains may pose new constraints and challenges, leading to the reexamination of old questions and assumptions.

Scientific Foundations for Internet’s Next Generation (SING)

The theory of networked computing is a new formulation of state-of-the-art problems faced by computer networks. Control, especially feedback problems, is expected to play an increasing role in the Internet. Models hinging on temporal and spatial distribution of information and power are sought.  Network theory is likely to provide new insights into the theoretical foundations of social networks, game theory, and auction theory. Further, mobile information sources are likely to inspire new insights in the theory of computing.

Motivated by a desire to establish the theoretical foundations essential for the clean-slate redesign of the Internet, SING draws upon expertise and knowledge in the theoretical foundations of computing and communications, as well as signal processing. The goal of Internet redesign is to increase security, mobility, location cognition, power efficiency, and other desirable network properties. SING research studies go beyond incremental redesign that improves one or two of these specific properties.

Fundamental theoretical and algorithmic studies involving coordination and cooperation are encouraged. Research in streaming algorithms for massive datasets is of particular interest. Scalability, complexity, and interactivity problems need to be addressed. Tradeoffs between communication and computation and storage are of vital interest. The role of mobility in information dissemination needs to be analyzed and exploited. Algorithmic distributed mechanism design and distributed control are crucial with sensing and control applications.

Applications based on new theoretical foundations require investigations ranging from the role of location from spatial behavior of propagation to “place.”  In general, applications of sensing and control over the network, along with the theoretical underpinnings, are of interest.

Theory of Computing

Theoretical computer science is about understanding the nature of computation - its inherent power and its limitations.  “Computation” is meant in a broad sense to include mathematical models of computation, human-designed computing on real computers and what might be called natural computing, that is, computing occurring in nature or inspired by natural processes. A central set of issues involves the development of tools, techniques, and paradigms for efficient computation.

Specific areas in the theory of computing element of TF include but are not limited to: design and analysis of algorithms (probabilistic, approximation, sublinear, parallel/distributed, on-line, etc.); data-structures; computational complexity; randomness and derandomization; cryptography; discrete and computational geometry; games, economics, and auctions; combinatorics, combinatorial optimization, algorithmic graph theory; hardness of approximation; mathematical learning theory; logic and formal methods; quantum computation; networks and the theory of network computation; computational biology; and coding and information.

Work in the theory of computing that is directed towards applications in other areas of computer science, or in other areas of science, is welcome.  This is the case especially when the application necessitates the development of new theory.

Cross-Program Activities and Beyond

The TF program strongly encourages proposals that transcend the confines of each of the areas delineated above and other CISE programs. For example, computational geometry and theory of computing proposals that address challenges in managing large-scale, distributed, networked, spatial-temporal geometric data may impact a number of programs within CISE and some outside the CISE Directorate. Similarly, signal processing proposals that explore novel clustering and classification algorithms in learning theory may be relevant to various signal/image understanding challenges that are addressed in various programs in the Division of Information and Intelligent Systems and the Directorate for Biological Sciences.

III. AWARD INFORMATION

Approximately 15 awards will be made with average budgets of $60,000/year for up to 3 years. These awards may support, for example, one student or a PI's summer salary. Award preference will be given to PIs who have not previously served as PIs or co-PIs on NSF awards.

Up to 55 awards will be made with average budgets of $125,000/year for up to 3 years.

Up to 5 awards will be made for well-integrated projects of larger scope, with average budgets of $500,000/year.

No more than one three-year award will be made with a budget up to $1,000,000/year.

IV. ELIGIBILITY INFORMATION

Organization Limit: 

None Specified

PI Limit: 

None Specified

Limit on Number of Proposals per Organization: 

None Specified

Limit on Number of Proposals per PI: 2 

An investigator may participate as PI, Co-PI, or Senior Personnel in at most two proposals in response to this solicitation.

Additional Eligibility Info:

V. PROPOSAL PREPARATION AND SUBMISSION INSTRUCTIONS

A. Proposal Preparation Instructions

Full Proposal Preparation Instructions: Proposers may opt to submit proposals in response to this Program Solicitation via Grants.gov or via the NSF FastLane system.

  • Full proposals submitted via FastLane: Proposals submitted in response to this program solicitation should be prepared and submitted in accordance with the general guidelines contained in the NSF Grant Proposal Guide (GPG). The complete text of the GPG is available electronically on the NSF website at: http://www.nsf.gov/publications/pub_summ.jsp?ods_key=gpg. Paper copies of the GPG may be obtained from the NSF Publications Clearinghouse, telephone (703) 292-7827 or by e-mail from pubs@nsf.gov. Proposers are reminded to identify this program solicitation number in the program solicitation block on the NSF Cover Sheet For Proposal to the National Science Foundation. Compliance with this requirement is critical to determining the relevant proposal processing guidelines. Failure to submit this information may delay processing.
  • Full proposals submitted via Grants.gov: Proposals submitted in response to this program solicitation via Grants.gov should be prepared and submitted in accordance with the NSF Grants.gov Application Guide: A Guide for the Preparation and Submission of NSF Applications via Grants.gov. The complete text of the NSF Grants.gov Application Guide is available on the Grants.gov website and on the NSF website at: (http://www.nsf.gov/bfa/dias/policy/docs/grantsgovguide.pdf). To obtain copies of the Application Guide and Application Forms Package, click on the Apply tab on the Grants.gov site, then click on the Apply Step 1: Download a Grant Application Package and Application Instructions link and enter the funding opportunity number, (the program solicitation number without the NSF prefix) and press the Download Package button. Paper copies of the Grants.gov Application Guide also may be obtained from the NSF Publications Clearinghouse, telephone (703) 292-7827 or by e-mail from pubs@nsf.gov.

In determining which method to utilize in the electronic preparation and submission of the proposal, please note the following:

Collaborative Proposals. All collaborative proposals submitted as separate submissions from multiple organizations must be submitted via the NSF FastLane system. Chapter II, Section D.3 of the Grant Proposal Guide provides additional information on collaborative proposals.

B. Budgetary Information

Cost Sharing:   Cost sharing is not required under this solicitation.

C. Due Dates

  • Submission Window Date(s) (due by 5 p.m. proposer's local time): 

    March 12, 2008 - March 19, 2008

D. FastLane/Grants.gov Requirements

  • For Proposals Submitted Via FastLane:

    Detailed technical instructions regarding the technical aspects of preparation and submission via FastLane are available at: https://www.fastlane.nsf.gov/a1/newstan.htm. For FastLane user support, call the FastLane Help Desk at 1-800-673-6188 or e-mail fastlane@nsf.gov. The FastLane Help Desk answers general technical questions related to the use of the FastLane system. Specific questions related to this program solicitation should be referred to the NSF program staff contact(s) listed in Section VIII of this funding opportunity.

    Submission of Electronically Signed Cover Sheets. The Authorized Organizational Representative (AOR) must electronically sign the proposal Cover Sheet to submit the required proposal certifications (see Chapter II, Section C of the Grant Proposal Guide for a listing of the certifications). The AOR must provide the required electronic certifications within five working days following the electronic submission of the proposal. Further instructions regarding this process are available on the FastLane Website at: https://www.fastlane.nsf.gov/fastlane.jsp.

  • For Proposals Submitted Via Grants.gov:
  • Before using Grants.gov for the first time, each organization must register to create an institutional profile. Once registered, the applicant's organization can then apply for any federal grant on the Grants.gov website. The Grants.gov's Grant Community User Guide is a comprehensive reference document that provides technical information about Grants.gov. Proposers can download the User Guide as a Microsoft Word document or as a PDF document. The Grants.gov User Guide is available at: http://www.grants.gov/CustomerSupport. In addition, the NSF Grants.gov Application Guide provides additional technical guidance regarding preparation of proposals via Grants.gov. For Grants.gov user support, contact the Grants.gov Contact Center at 1-800-518-4726 or by email: support@grants.gov. The Grants.gov Contact Center answers general technical questions related to the use of Grants.gov. Specific questions related to this program solicitation should be referred to the NSF program staff contact(s) listed in Section VIII of this solicitation.

    Submitting the Proposal: Once all documents have been completed, the Authorized Organizational Representative (AOR) must submit the application to Grants.gov and verify the desired funding opportunity and agency to which the application is submitted. The AOR must then sign and submit the application to Grants.gov. The completed application will be transferred to the NSF FastLane system for further processing.

VI. NSF PROPOSAL PROCESSING AND REVIEW PROCEDURES   

Proposals received by NSF are assigned to the appropriate NSF program and, if they meet NSF proposal preparation requirements, for review. All proposals are carefully reviewed by a scientist, engineer, or educator serving as an NSF Program Officer, and usually by three to ten other persons outside NSF who are experts in the particular fields represented by the proposal. These reviewers are selected by Program Officers charged with the oversight of the review process. Proposers are invited to suggest names of persons they believe are especially well qualified to review the proposal and/or persons they would prefer not review the proposal. These suggestions may serve as one source in the reviewer selection process at the Program Officer's discretion. Submission of such names, however, is optional. Care is taken to ensure that reviewers have no conflicts with the proposer.

A. NSF Merit Review Criteria

All NSF proposals are evaluated through use of the two National Science Board (NSB)-approved merit review criteria: intellectual merit and the broader impacts of the proposed effort. In some instances, however, NSF will employ additional criteria as required to highlight the specific objectives of certain programs and activities.

The two NSB-approved merit review criteria are listed below. The criteria include considerations that help define them. These considerations are suggestions and not all will apply to any given proposal. While proposers must address both merit review criteria, reviewers will be asked to address only those considerations that are relevant to the proposal being considered and for which the reviewer is qualified to make judgements.

What is the intellectual merit of the proposed activity?
How important is the proposed activity to advancing knowledge and understanding within its own field or across different fields? How well qualified is the proposer (individual or team) to conduct the project? (If appropriate, the reviewer will comment on the quality of the prior work.) To what extent does the proposed activity suggest and explore creative, original, or potentially transformative concepts? How well conceived and organized is the proposed activity? Is there sufficient access to resources?

What are the broader impacts of the proposed activity?
How well does the activity advance discovery and understanding while promoting teaching, training, and learning? How well does the proposed activity broaden the participation of underrepresented groups (e.g., gender, ethnicity, disability, geographic, etc.)? To what extent will it enhance the infrastructure for research and education, such as facilities, instrumentation, networks, and partnerships? Will the results be disseminated broadly to enhance scientific and technological understanding? What may be the benefits of the proposed activity to society?

Examples illustrating activities likely to demonstrate broader impacts are available electronically on the NSF website at: http://www.nsf.gov/pubs/gpg/broaderimpacts.pdf.

NSF staff will give careful consideration to the following in making funding decisions:

Integration of Research and Education
One of the principal strategies in support of NSF's goals is to foster integration of research and education through the programs, projects, and activities it supports at academic and research institutions. These institutions provide abundant opportunities where individuals may concurrently assume responsibilities as researchers, educators, and students and where all can engage in joint efforts that infuse education with the excitement of discovery and enrich research through the diversity of learning perspectives.

Integrating Diversity into NSF Programs, Projects, and Activities
Broadening opportunities and enabling the participation of all citizens -- women and men, underrepresented minorities, and persons with disabilities -- is essential to the health and vitality of science and engineering. NSF is committed to this principle of diversity and deems it central to the programs, projects, and activities it considers and supports.

B. Review and Selection Process

Proposals submitted in response to this program solicitation will be reviewed by Panel Review.

Reviewers will be asked to formulate a recommendation to either support or decline each proposal. The Program Officer assigned to manage the proposal's review will consider the advice of reviewers and will formulate a recommendation.

After scientific, technical and programmatic review and consideration of appropriate factors, the NSF Program Officer recommends to the cognizant Division Director whether the proposal should be declined or recommended for award. NSF is striving to be able to tell applicants whether their proposals have been declined or recommended for funding within six months. The time interval begins on the date of receipt.  The interval ends when the Division Director accepts the Program Officer's recommendation.

A summary rating and accompanying narrative will be completed and submitted by each reviewer. In all cases, reviews are treated as confidential documents. Verbatim copies of reviews, excluding the names of the reviewers, are sent to the Principal Investigator/Project Director by the Program Officer.  In addition, the proposer will receive an explanation of the decision to award or decline funding.

In all cases, after programmatic approval has been obtained, the proposals recommended for funding will be forwarded to the Division of Grants and Agreements for review of business, financial, and policy implications and the processing and issuance of a grant or other agreement. Proposers are cautioned that only a Grants and Agreements Officer may make commitments, obligations or awards on behalf of NSF or authorize the expenditure of funds. No commitment on the part of NSF should be inferred from technical or budgetary discussions with a NSF Program Officer. A Principal Investigator or organization that makes financial or personnel commitments in the absence of a grant or cooperative agreement signed by the NSF Grants and Agreements Officer does so at their own risk.

VII. AWARD ADMINISTRATION INFORMATION

A. Notification of the Award

Notification of the award is made to the submitting organization by a Grants Officer in the Division of Grants and Agreements. Organizations whose proposals are declined will be advised as promptly as possible by the cognizant NSF Program administering the program. Verbatim copies of reviews, not including the identity of the reviewer, will be provided automatically to the Principal Investigator. (See Section VI.B. for additional information on the review process.)

B. Award Conditions

An NSF award consists of: (1) the award letter, which includes any special provisions applicable to the award and any numbered amendments thereto; (2) the budget, which indicates the amounts, by categories of expense, on which NSF has based its support (or otherwise communicates any specific approvals or disapprovals of proposed expenditures); (3) the proposal referenced in the award letter; (4) the applicable award conditions, such as Grant General Conditions (GC-1); * or Federal Demonstration Partnership (FDP) Terms and Conditions * and (5) any announcement or other NSF issuance that may be incorporated by reference in the award letter. Cooperative agreements also are administered in accordance with NSF Cooperative Agreement Financial and Administrative Terms and Conditions (CA-FATC) and the applicable Programmatic Terms and Conditions. NSF awards are electronically signed by an NSF Grants and Agreements Officer and transmitted electronically to the organization via e-mail.

*These documents may be accessed electronically on NSF's Website at http://www.nsf.gov/awards/managing/general_conditions.jsp?org=NSF. Paper copies may be obtained from the NSF Publications Clearinghouse, telephone (703) 292-7827 or by e-mail from pubs@nsf.gov.

More comprehensive information on NSF Award Conditions and other important information on the administration of NSF awards is contained in the NSF Award & Administration Guide (AAG) Chapter II, available electronically on the NSF Website at http://www.nsf.gov/publications/pub_summ.jsp?ods_key=aag.

C. Reporting Requirements

For all multi-year grants (including both standard and continuing grants), the Principal Investigator must submit an annual project report to the cognizant Program Officer at least 90 days before the end of the current budget period. (Some programs or awards require more frequent project reports). Within 90 days after expiration of a grant, the PI also is required to submit a final project report.

Failure to provide the required annual or final project reports will delay NSF review and processing of any future funding increments as well as any pending proposals for that PI. PIs should examine the formats of the required reports in advance to assure availability of required data.

PIs are required to use NSF's electronic project-reporting system, available through FastLane, for preparation and submission of annual and final project reports.  Such reports provide information on activities and findings, project participants (individual and organizational) publications; and, other specific products and contributions.  PIs will not be required to re-enter information previously provided, either with a proposal or in earlier updates using the electronic system.  Submission of the report via FastLane constitutes certification by the PI that the contents of the report are accurate and complete.

VIII. AGENCY CONTACTS

General inquiries regarding this program should be made to:

  • Richard Beigel, Theory of Computing, telephone: (703) 292-8910, email: rbeigel@nsf.gov

  • John Cozzens, Signal Processing Systems, telephone: (703) 292-8910, email: jcozzens@nsf.gov

  • Lenore Mullin, Numeric, Symbolic & Geometric Computing, telephone: (703) 292-8910, email: lmullin@nsf.gov

  • Robert Grafton, Numeric, Symbolic & Geometric Computing, telephone: (703) 292-8910, email: rgrafton@nsf.gov

  • Eun Park, Scientific Foundations for Internet's Next Generation (SING), telephone: (703) 292-8910, email: epark@nsf.gov

  • Sirin Tekinay, Communications Research, SING, telephone: (703) 292-8910, email: stekinay@nsf.gov

For questions related to the use of FastLane, contact:

For questions relating to Grants.gov contact:

  • Grants.gov Contact Center: If the Authorized Organizational Representatives (AOR) has not received a confirmation message from Grants.gov within 48 hours of submission of application, please contact via telephone: 1-800-518-4726; e-mail: support@grants.gov.

IX. OTHER INFORMATION

The NSF Website provides the most comprehensive source of information on NSF Directorates (including contact information), programs and funding opportunities. Use of this Website by potential proposers is strongly encouraged. In addition, MyNSF (formerly the Custom News Service) is an information-delivery system designed to keep potential proposers and other interested parties apprised of new NSF funding opportunities and publications, important changes in proposal and award policies and procedures, and upcoming NSF Regional Grants Conferences. Subscribers are informed through e-mail or the user's Web browser each time new publications are issued that match their identified interests. MyNSF also is available on NSF's Website at http://www.nsf.gov/mynsf/.

Grants.gov provides an additional electronic capability to search for Federal government-wide grant opportunities. NSF funding opportunities may be accessed via this new mechanism. Further information on Grants.gov may be obtained at http://www.grants.gov.

ABOUT THE NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION

The National Science Foundation (NSF) is an independent Federal agency created by the National Science Foundation Act of 1950, as amended (42 USC 1861-75). The Act states the purpose of the NSF is "to promote the progress of science; [and] to advance the national health, prosperity, and welfare by supporting research and education in all fields of science and engineering."

NSF funds research and education in most fields of science and engineering. It does this through grants and cooperative agreements to more than 2,000 colleges, universities, K-12 school systems, businesses, informal science organizations and other research organizations throughout the US. The Foundation accounts for about one-fourth of Federal support to academic institutions for basic research.

NSF receives approximately 40,000 proposals each year for research, education and training projects, of which approximately 11,000 are funded. In addition, the Foundation receives several thousand applications for graduate and postdoctoral fellowships. The agency operates no laboratories itself but does support National Research Centers, user facilities, certain oceanographic vessels and Antarctic research stations. The Foundation also supports cooperative research between universities and industry, US participation in international scientific and engineering efforts, and educational activities at every academic level.

Facilitation Awards for Scientists and Engineers with Disabilities provide funding for special assistance or equipment to enable persons with disabilities to work on NSF-supported projects. See Grant Proposal Guide Chapter II, Section D.2 for instructions regarding preparation of these types of proposals.

The National Science Foundation has Telephonic Device for the Deaf (TDD) and Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) capabilities that enable individuals with hearing impairments to communicate with the Foundation about NSF programs, employment or general information. TDD may be accessed at (703) 292-5090 and (800) 281-8749, FIRS at (800) 877-8339.

The National Science Foundation Information Center may be reached at (703) 292-5111.

The National Science Foundation promotes and advances scientific progress in the United States by competitively awarding grants and cooperative agreements for research and education in the sciences, mathematics, and engineering.

To get the latest information about program deadlines, to download copies of NSF publications, and to access abstracts of awards, visit the NSF Website at http://www.nsf.gov

  • Location:

4201 Wilson Blvd. Arlington, VA 22230

  • For General Information
    (NSF Information Center):

(703) 292-5111

  • TDD (for the hearing-impaired):

(703) 292-5090

  • To Order Publications or Forms:

Send an e-mail to:

pubs@nsf.gov

or telephone:

(703) 292-7827

  • To Locate NSF Employees:

(703) 292-5111


PRIVACY ACT AND PUBLIC BURDEN STATEMENTS

The information requested on proposal forms and project reports is solicited under the authority of the National Science Foundation Act of 1950, as amended. The information on proposal forms will be used in connection with the selection of qualified proposals; and project reports submitted by awardees will be used for program evaluation and reporting within the Executive Branch and to Congress. The information requested may be disclosed to qualified reviewers and staff assistants as part of the proposal review process; to proposer institutions/grantees to provide or obtain data regarding the proposal review process, award decisions, or the administration of awards; to government contractors, experts, volunteers and researchers and educators as necessary to complete assigned work; to other government agencies or other entities needing information regarding applicants or nominees as part of a joint application review process, or in order to coordinate programs or policy; and to another Federal agency, court, or party in a court or Federal administrative proceeding if the government is a party. Information about Principal Investigators may be added to the Reviewer file and used to select potential candidates to serve as peer reviewers or advisory committee members. See Systems of Records, NSF-50, "Principal Investigator/Proposal File and Associated Records," 69 Federal Register 26410 (May 12, 2004), and NSF-51, "Reviewer/Proposal File and Associated Records, " 69 Federal Register 26410 (May 12, 2004). Submission of the information is voluntary. Failure to provide full and complete information, however, may reduce the possibility of receiving an award.

An agency may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to, an information collection unless it displays a valid Office of Management and Budget (OMB) control number. The OMB control number for this collection is 3145-0058. Public reporting burden for this collection of information is estimated to average 120 hours per response, including the time for reviewing instructions. Send comments regarding the burden estimate and any other aspect of this collection of information, including suggestions for reducing this burden, to:

Suzanne H. Plimpton
Reports Clearance Officer
Division of Administrative Services
National Science Foundation
Arlington, VA 22230



 

Policies and Important Links

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National Science Foundation

The National Science Foundation, 4201 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, Virginia 22230, USA
Tel: (703) 292-5111, FIRS: (800) 877-8339 | TDD: (800) 281-8749

Last Updated:
11/07/06
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