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Senior Archaeology Award Info

Target dates: December 20 and July 1

Senior awards normally support research of Ph.D. level investigators with the goal to further anthropologically significant archaeological research. All geographic regions and time periods are eligible for consideration and grants are provided for both field and laboratory research. The Program welcomes applications for all types of research projects which can be justified within an anthropological context. Requests for conferences, publications, curation and data base development although less frequent, may also receive support. Many proposals are jointly reviewed with other NSF Programs and research which crosses disciplinary boundaries is welcome The Foundation limits awards to five years and imposes no maximum dollar amount. During the government fiscal year 2012, 31 of 148 submissions (21%) received support and a distribution of award size and duration is presented below.

NSF Required Data Management Plan
Proposals submitted to NSF must include a supplementary document of no more than two pages labeled "Data Management Plan" (DMP). This supplementary document should describe how the proposal will conform to NSF policy on the dissemination and sharing of research results. For more information about this new requirement, please see the Grant Proposal Guide, Chapter II.C.2.j and the Data Management and Sharing Frequently Asked Questions(FAQs). Please note: the SBE Directorate has additional guidance for proposals submitted to SBE programs, please see Data Management for NSF SBE Directorate Proposals and Awards. Questions should be addressed to John Yellen via e-mail (jyellen@nsf.gov). While the Archaeology Program does not sponsor or have an official arrangement with any data archive it would note that two organizations provide this service.

In addition to the NSF guidance, you may find the guidance provided by the Society for American Archaeology (SAA) helpful. Additional resources can be found at the SAA site.

Proposals are evaluated by both outside reviewers selected for specific expertise in the applicant’s subject area and a panel of anthropological archaeologists which convenes twice yearly. The Fall panel generally meets in October/November and the Spring meeting is held in conjunction with the Society For American Archaeology convention. Applicants are invited to contact the Program Director to determine panel dates and then to inquire about application outcome. They are also directed to the Fastlane template which permits them to suggest names of potential reviewers and to note inappropriate individuals.

Applicants should follow instructions in the Grant Proposal Guide and are required to submit proposals electronically through the NSF Fastlane system. They should also read the Answers to Frequent Proposal Preparation Questions in the Archaeology Program web site.

Data from NSF fiscal year 2012

Award duration (months)
Number of Awards
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Award amount
Number of awards
$0 - $50,000
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$50,000 - $100,000
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$100,00 - $150,000
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$150,000 - $200,000
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$200,000 - $250,000
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$250,000 - $300,000
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