Under the lead agency agreement, researchers can submit a single collaborative proposal that will go through a streamlined review process either at NSF or at UKRI, on behalf of both NSF/BIO and UKRI/BBSRC.
Potential proposers should submit a letter of Intention to Submit (ITS) by September 22, 2021. If both agencies agree that the research topic fits the topical areas identified for FY 2022, researchers will be invited to submit a full proposal to the appropriate NSF or UKRI program.
Projects must address the priorities of both UKRI/BBSRC and participating NSF/BIO Divisions. Proposers must provide a clear rationale as to the need of the US-UK collaboration, including the unique expertise and collaboration that the team will bring to the project.
For full details on submission guidelines, program priorities, and contact information, see DCL NSF 21-100.
BLOG ANNOUCEMENT:The MCB Blog members will be going on a hiatus until mid-August. We hope to see you again in the fall!
As noted on BIO Buzz, the blog of the Assistant Director for Biological Sciences (BIO), BIO has released a Dear Colleague Letter (DCL) to provide supplementary funding in support of recent college graduates who were not able to get research experience due to impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic.
Research Experiences for Post-baccalaureate Students (REPS) supplemental funding requests will be reviewed for funding consideration upon receipt. To receive full funding consideration for FY2021, requests should be submitted by July 2, 2021. Supplemental funding requests submitted after that date will be considered if funds are available.
What is the eligibility requirement for PIs requesting a REPS supplement? PIs with active awards from BIO (funded through DBI, DEB, EF, IOS, or MCB) are eligible to request supplements. Awards in no-cost extension are eligible, but if more time is needed to enable completion of the post-baccalaureate research, then another extension may need to be requested. Recipients of fellowship awards (GRFP or Postdoc fellowships) are not eligible to apply.
What is the eligibility requirement for participation in REPS? The student must have graduated with a bachelor’s degree and must not currently be enrolled in another degree program. The goal of this DCL is to ameliorate effects of the pandemic on the ability for undergraduates to engage in research experiences. Priority should be placed on students who are from underrepresented groups or students who have not participated in any type of research experience. Proposers are also strongly encouraged to consider involving veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces.
Do participants have to be US citizens or permanent residents? Yes.
Does the supplement request have to include the student’s identity at the time of submission? Yes, please include information about the individual to be trained, for example, a biosketch or resumé, including their date or expected date of graduation. This information should be included in the “Justification for Supplement.” This opportunity is not intended to provide funds to PIs who would then advertise for a student to support. Rather, the student should have been identified before requesting the supplement.
For additional information please reach out to the cognizant Program Officer on your award or one of the below REPS Program contacts:
Dr. Sally O’Connor, Program Director, Division of Biological Infrastructure, firstname.lastname@example.org
Dr. Paulyn Cartwright, Program Director, Division of Integrative Organismal Systems, email@example.com
Dr. Marcia Newcomer, Program Director, Division of Molecular and Cellular Biosciences, firstname.lastname@example.org
Dr. Chris Balakrishnan, Program Director, Division of Environmental Biology, email@example.com
A new Dear Colleague Letter (DCL) was issued by the Directorate for Biological Sciences (BIO) on the development of new tools and methods to advance our understanding of cells. Tool Development for Cell Biology, or Tools4Cells (NSF 21-057), seeks to expand our knowledge of cells using interdisciplinary approaches that can leverage advances in other fields and apply them to cell biology. Some examples of these advances include gene-editing technologies such as CRISPR/Cas9 applied to probe gene localization, and the application of cryo-EM and x-ray free electron lasers to the study of protein structure and dynamics.
Read more about the DCL criteria and proposal submission details here.
The field of molecular and cellular biosciences has generated vast amounts of knowledge about cellular parts and processes through advances in biophysical, -omics, and imaging technologies, among others. The work of synthesizing this information, such as harmonizing and collectively interpreting divergent datasets, developing new analytical approaches and tools, building models and theories, and integrating knowledge from within and across various disciplines, can have a transformative impact on all of biology.
NSF has a history of supporting information synthesis through large scale centers, such as the National Evolutionary Synthesis Center (NESCent), that have engaged thousands of investigators over 10-year investment periods and have led to striking advances in their fields.
To begin planning for a synthesis center, the Division of Molecular and Cellular Biosciences has released a Dear Colleague Letter (NSF 21-017) announcing the availability of conference funding to build networks of scientists with diverse perspectives to formulate ideas for a synthesis center in molecular and cellular sciences. To be considered for FY 2021 funding, proposals responsive to this DCL should be received before April 21, 2021. Proposals will be awarded on a rolling basis. Important details about preparing and submitting a competitive conference proposal are included in the announcement.
Participants from academia, industry, government, non-profit, and other sectors are encouraged to submit their ideas at https://bit.ly/31sNzDg. Responses to the RFI are due by November 9, 2020.
Upcoming Webinars for RFI Interested individuals may join the Convergence Accelerator on October 21 or 27, 2020 to learn about the program’s ideation process, specifically focusing on the FY 2022 RFI on future topics. Attendees will learn about the Convergence Accelerator’s model and fundamentals, designed to leverage a convergence approach to transition basic research and discovery into practice. Through this program, fundamental knowledge generated by MCB-supported science can be transitioned to address complex societal issues.
The goal of this webinar is to bring awareness of this exciting opportunity to accelerate NSF-funded research and discovery to further societal impact.
NSF recently released a Dear Colleague Letter (DCL)
inviting the community to provide input on data-intensive science and
engineering research questions and challenges and the essential data-related
cyberinfrastructure (CI) services and capabilities needed to publish, discover,
transport, manage and process data in secure, performant and scalable ways to
enable that data-intensive research.
This is an opportunity for the BIO community to provide input on
questions, challenges and associated needs specifically related to data-focused
CI. While this DCL is not a funding opportunity, all input would be used to
inform the refinement of NSF’s CI investment strategy and planning of future
NSF funding opportunities.
For more information on how to submit ideas, please refer to the
DCL (NSF 20-015) or
contact the NSF Office of Advanced Cyberinfrastructure, firstname.lastname@example.org.
The deadline for submissions is December 16, 2019.
The National Ecological Observatory Network (NEON) became fully operational this year, and public sources of data are now freely available. Additionally, a recent Dear Colleague Letter announced an intent to compete management of future operation and maintenance of the network. Read more about it on Bio Buzz, BIO’s blog from the office of the Assistant Director.
Funding opportunities are available in fiscal years FY 2019
and FY 2020 to provide support for proposals from interdisciplinary teams
comprised of mathematical, computational, and biological scientists to develop MODels for Uncovering Rules and Unexpected Phenomena in Biological Systems (MODULUS). The divisions of Molecular and Cellular Biosciences (MCB)
and Mathematical Sciences (DMS) are seeking to cultivate innovative modes of
collaboration among researchers working at the interface of mathematics and
molecular and cellular biology. The MODULUS DCL encourages the formation of
nascent collaborative teams that use novel mechanistic mathematical models to
guide systems-scale exploration and discovery of new biological phenomena,
rules, and theories that govern molecular interactions and emergent behaviors
in living systems.
Proposals in response to this DCL may be submitted to the
current core solicitations, either in DMS via the Mathematical Biology Program
18-7334, or the MCB solicitation NSF
18-585 and directed to the Systems and Synthetic Biology program. Full
details on program priorities, submission requirements, and important dates are
available via the
The March 1 deadline for submissions to the NSF 19-027 (Dear Colleague Letter: Request for Information-Integration Institutes for Cross-cutting Biology) remains unchanged. For more information about this DCL, please visit the BIO Buzz article posted at this link.
The NSF Directorate for Biological Sciences has published a Dear Colleague Letter: Request for Information seeking ideas from the community on Integration Institutes for cross-cutting biology. These institutes would support collaborative teams of researchers to address questions that span multiple levels of organization in living systems and require expertise from diverse biological subdisciplines.