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Polar Programs (PLR)

USAP Special Announcement (2014)

Dear Colleague Letter:  Recompetition of the Management of the IceCube Neutrino Observatory(NSF 14-037) (PDF format; Text format)

(24 February 2014)

Antarctic and Arctic Research Programs Resume





(Updated: 29 October 2013)

USAP Special Announcement

Fiscal Challenges Facing the U.S. Antarctic Program — A message to the U.S. Antarctic Program research community

National Strategy for the Arctic Region

Today, President Barack Obama signed the National Strategy for the Arctic Region.  The United States is pleased to join our Arctic Council colleagues Canada, Norway, Denmark, Iceland, Finland, Russia, and Sweden in articulating our strategic priorities for this critical region of the world.

The Administration solicited input from Alaska Natives, the State of Alaska and others as it was developing the National Strategy for the Arctic. Successful implementation of the National Strategy will depend upon active engagement with Alaska Natives, the State of Alaska and other key stakeholders. In particular, proceeding with the stewardship of Arctic resources under an Integrated Arctic Management approach requires meaningful, up-front input by the State, Alaska Natives, and others. As a further demonstration of its commitment to such input, Administration officials will be hosting roundtable discussions in Alaska in the coming weeks to determine how best to move forward with the implementation of the concepts laid out in this National Strategy.

A copy of the National Strategy for the Arctic Region can be found on the White House web site

The National Science Foundation is pleased to have participated in the development of the National Strategy for the Arctic Region.  The release of the Arctic Strategy is timely and builds on collaborations underway across government to identify and address priorities associated with environmental changes in this important region and implications for Arctic residents, the U.S. as an Arctic nation, and the world.  One such effort is the Interagency Arctic Research Policy Committee, which is chaired by the director of NSF.  Read more about NSF Arctic activities.

Posted 10 May 2013

Polar Post-Doctoral Fellowship Program

Suspension of the Postdoctoral Fellowship in Polar Regions Research Program (Dear Colleague Letter, NSF 13-086)

IARPC Arctic 5-year research plan

On February 19, 2013, the National Science and Technology Council released a five-year Arctic Research Plan that outlines key areas of study the Federal government will undertake to better understand and predict environmental changes in the Arctic.  For more information, go to the Interagency Arctic Research and Policy Committee — Arctic Research Plan page at http://www.nsf.gov/geo/plr/arctic/iarpc/arc_res_plan_index.jsp

U.S. Antarctic Program Blue Ribbon Panel

On March 21, 2013, the National Science Foundation issued a summary response to the recommendations of the U.S. Antarctic Program Blue Ribbon Panel that was charged with advising NSF on how to improve and streamline its logistical capabilities to more efficiently support world-class Antarctic science.  The response is available at 


The U.S. Antarctic Program Blue Ribbon Panel report was released by the Office of Science and Technology Policy and the National Science Foundation on 23 July 2012 during a press conference at the National Academy of Sciences.

The report, More and Better Science in Antarctica through Increased Logistical Effectiveness, is available at


Updated:  17 May 2013

Automatic Compliance Checking in Fastlane

On March 15, 2013, FastLane will begin automatic compliance checking of all submitted proposals.

Programs and Funding Opportunities

Key: Crosscutting Crosscutting | NSF Wide Flag NSF-wide

Antarctic Research
bullet Antarctic Astrophysics and Geospace Sciences
bullet Antarctic Earth Sciences Program
bullet Antarctic Glaciology Program
bullet Antarctic Integrated System Science
bullet Antarctic Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences
bullet Antarctic Organisms and Ecosystems
Antarctic Artists and Writers Program
Arctic Research Opportunities
bullet Arctic Natural Sciences Program
bullet Arctic Observing Network  (AON)
bullet Arctic Research Support and Logistics Program
bullet Arctic Social Sciences Program
bullet Arctic System Science (ARCSS) Program
Arctic SEES (ArcSEES)
Cyberinfrastructure Training, Education, Advancement, and Mentoring for Our 21st Century Workforce NSF Wide Flag
Documenting Endangered Languages (DEL)
Long-Term Ecological Research (LTER) Crosscutting
Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) NSF Wide Flag
Science and Technology Centers: Integrative Partnerships NSF Wide Flag
Science of Learning Centers (SLC) NSF Wide Flag
Science, Engineering and Education for Sustainability NSF-Wide Investment (SEES) NSF Wide Flag Crosscutting
bullet Ocean Acidification  (OA)
bullet Decadal and Regional Climate Prediction using Earth System Models  (EaSM) NSF Wide Flag Crosscutting
bullet Dimensions of Biodiversity FY2014
bullet NSF Science, Engineering and Education for Sustainability Fellows Crosscutting
bullet Research Coordination Networks Crosscutting
bullet Sustainability Research Networks Competition  (SRN) NSF Wide Flag
bullet Water Sustainability and Climate  (WSC) Crosscutting
Postdoctoral Fellowships in Polar Regions Research
Academic Research Infrastructure Program: Recovery and Reinvestment (ARI-R˛) Crosscutting
ADVANCE: Increasing the Participation and Advancement of Women in Academic Science and Engineering Careers NSF Wide Flag
EarthCube: Crosscutting
Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship Program (IGERT) NSF Wide Flag
Paleo Perspectives on Climate Change (P2C2)
Partnerships for International Research and Education (PIRE) NSF Wide Flag
Research in Undergraduate Institutions NSF Wide Flag Crosscutting

Featured NSF-wide Programs

NSF Science, Engineering and Education for Sustainability Fellows NSF Wide Flag

Sustainability Research Networks Competition NSF Wide Flag

View All NSF-wide Programs

NSF Educational Opportunities by Audience

For Undergraduate Students

For Graduate Students

For Postdoctoral Fellows

For K-12 Educators

Recently Announced Funding Opportunities See All

National Science Foundation Research Traineeship (NRT) Program
(NSF  14-548) Posted March 27, 2014

Innovation Corps Sites Program
(NSF  14-547) Posted March 24, 2014

Sustainability Research Networks Competition
(NSF  14-534) Posted January 29, 2014

Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program
(NSF  14-532) Posted January 10, 2014

Decadal and Regional Climate Prediction using Earth System Models
(NSF  13-607) Posted September 23, 2013

Upcoming Due Dates See All

Catalyzing New International Collaborations
(NSF  13-605) Full Proposal: April 22, 2014

Sustainability Research Networks Competition
(NSF  14-534) Full Proposal: April 29, 2014

Antarctic Artists and Writers Program
(NSF  13-540) Full Proposal: May 1, 2014

National Science Foundation Research Traineeship (NRT) Program
(NSF  14-548) Letter of Intent: May 20, 2014, NRT Letter of Intent

Research Experiences for Undergraduates
(NSF  13-542) Full Proposal: May 23, 2014, Deadline for REU Site proposals requiring access to Antarctica. All other REU Site proposals must be submitted to the August REU deadline.

News See All

An unmanned aircraft Unmanned aircraft successfully tested as tool for measuring changes in polar ice sheets
Released April 1, 2014
Press Release
Phil Smith  on a visit to Antarctica with rocketry pioneer Wernher von Braun. Philip M. Smith, former Polar Programs deputy director and advocate for U.S. International Polar Year involvement, dies at 81
Released March 31, 2014
Press Statement
an Antarctic prion Plankton make scents for seabirds and a cooler planet
Released March 20, 2014
News From the Field
R/V Sikuliaq deparing the Wisconsin shipyard Breaking the Ice
Released March 20, 2014
Press Release
open water in northeast Greenland Researchers: Northeast Greenland ice loss accelerating
Released March 17, 2014
News From the Field
illustration of the B-mode pattern observed with the BICEP2 telescope NSF-funded researchers say Antarctic telescope may have provided the first direct evidence of cosmic inflation and the origins of the universe
Released March 17, 2014
Press Release
a humpback whale breaching Whales, ships more common through Bering Strait
Released February 26, 2014
News From the Field
Adelie penguins crossing ice floes Computer model predicts vastly different ecosystem in Antarctica's Ross Sea in the coming century
Released February 26, 2014
Press Release

Discoveries See All

Map of Antarctica Advances in Computational Research Transform Scientific Process and Discovery
NSF-supported supercomputers enhance union between technology and the human mind
Released  March 25, 2013

image of penguins near the ocean water Adélie Penguins Cope With Climate Change
Facing the future: it all depends on sea ice
Released  February 6, 2013

Events Calendar See All

April 22, 2014  - April 23, 2014
Improving Undergraduate STEM Education (IUSE) Panel Meeting

May 12, 2014  - May 13, 2014
Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program Panel Meeting

June 23, 2014  - June 24, 2014
NSF Grants Conference - Denver, CO

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