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NSF 20-128

Frequently Asked Questions About SBE's Science of Science Programs

  1. Why was the Science of Science and Innovation Policy (SciSIP) program repositioned?
  2. What's the difference between the old SciSIP program and the current SoS:DCI program?
  3. What's the difference between the SoS:DCI program and the Science of Science Policy Approach to Analyzing and Innovating the Biomedical Research Enterprise (SCISIPBIO) solicitation?
  4. How are proposals reviewed for SCISIPBIO?
  5. What types of proposals are accepted by SoS:DCI and SCISIPBIO?
  6. What should I do if my research spans multiple programs?
  7. What is the typical funding amount for an SoS:DCI award?

  1. Why was the Science of Science and Innovation Policy (SciSIP) program repositioned?

    On September 24, 2019, the Directorate for Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences (SBE) announced the repositioning of several programs. The goal of the repositioning was to 1) respond to new and emerging areas of scientific inquiry, 2) help SBE researchers align their research with national priorities, and 3) articulate the value of SBE research to a wider set of stakeholders. The Science of Science and Innovation Policy (SciSIP) program was repositioned and renamed as the Science of Science: Discovery, Communication, and Impact (SoS:DCI) program. The repositioned SoS:DCI program focuses on the mechanisms that improve the productivity of scientific workflows, the nation's capacity to do research accurately and effectively, and the measurements of the value of science for society. This repositioning served to highlight the existing strengths of the program and to emphasize pressing needs, such as the accurate and effective communication of science to the public and policymakers.

  2. What's the difference between the old SciSIP program and the current SoS:DCI program?

    The goal of repositioning of SciSIP to SoS:DCI was to expand the program's portfolio and articulate its value to a wider audience of stakeholders. The strengths of the previous program in economics of science, science policy and innovation studies, for example, are still keenly important to questions posed by the SoS:DCI program. SoS:DCI continues to support transformative advances and to examine factors that contribute to the robustness of the scientific workforce. The SoS:DCI program continues to place a high priority on broadening participation, convergent research and collaboration.

  3. What's the difference between the SoS:DCI program and the Science of Science Policy Approach to Analyzing and Innovating the Biomedical Research Enterprise (SCISIPBIO) solicitation?

    The Science of Science Policy Approach to Analyzing and Innovating the Biomedical Research Enterprise (SCISIPBIO) solicitation was published in 2019 and called for research that would propel our understanding of the biomedical research enterprise by drawing scientific expertise from the science of science policy research community. The SCISIPBIO solicitation is a partnership with the National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS) within the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Proposals submitted under the SCISIPBIO solicitation must demonstrate a clear relationship with the biomedical sciences. SCISIPBIO proposals will be considered for funding by both NIH and NSF and may be funded individually by either NIH or NSF.

    SoS:DCI proposals do not need to have a biomedical focus. The same proposal cannot be submitted for both SCISIPBIO and SoS:DCI; however, a proposer may have separate proposals under consideration for both SCISIPBIO and SoS:DCI within the same panel.

  4. How are proposals reviewed for SCISIPBIO?

    Proposals submitted to SCISIPBIO will be reviewed within the panel convened by NSF for SoS:DCI. The merit review will be conducted by NSF with the participation of an NIH scientific review officer, and program staff from NIGMS will be given access to each proposal submitted to this initiative, as well as to all review information. For additional information, see "Review and Selection Process" in the SCISIPBIO program solicitation.

  5. What types of proposals are accepted by SoS:DCI and SCISIPBIO?

    The SoS:DCI program accepts research proposals in addition to the following types of proposals:

    • Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER)
    • Rapid Response Research (RAPID)
    • Early-concept Grants for Exploratory Research (EAGER)
    • Research Advanced by Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering (RAISE)
    • Grant Opportunities for Academic Liaison with Industry (GOALI)
    • Doctoral Dissertation Research Improvement Grants (DDRIG)
    • Conference proposals

    A description of each of these types of proposals can be found on the SoS:DCI website. Collaborative proposals are highly encouraged. There is no maximum team size and there are no restrictions on sector of affiliation. Funding of a foreign organization is allowable if it meets the criteria specified in Chapter I.E.6 of the NSF Proposal and Award Policies and Procedures Guide (PAPPG).

    The SCISIPBIO program only accepts research proposals, including collaborative proposals.

  6. What should I do if my research spans multiple programs?

    Science of Science is an inherently interdisciplinary area of inquiry. It is not uncommon for research within the SoS:DCI program to have affinities with other programs within the Social, Behavioral and Economic Sciences Directorate and across NSF. The SoS:DCI program encourages co-review and proposers are encouraged to contact relevant program officers to inquire about the fit within their program. If there is fit within multiple programs, the proposer can request co-review. The SoS:DCI program officer may also initiate a co-review with another program officer if they recognize potential fit after submission. If your proposal is relevant to these programs, you are encouraged to make this explicit in the proposal or contact the SoS:DCI program officer to suggest review by these other programs.

  7. What is the typical funding amount for an SoS:DCI award?

    While there is no funding limit for SoS:DCI proposals, the program works with a finite budget that has supported awards of varying sizes ($200,000-$700,000). To understand the scope of typical grants, please see the list of previously awarded grants from the SciSIP program.