Now Available on Research.gov Proposals: Cost Sharing and Single Copy Documents

Effective today, the National Science Foundation (NSF) enabled cost sharing (Line M on the proposal budget) for programs with mandatory cost sharing requirements on proposals submitted in Research.gov.  In addition, enhancements were deployed to the proposal Cover Sheet and proposal upload screens to support Single Copy Documents, which include Deviation Authorization, Special Exception – Natural or Anthropogenic Event, Proprietary or Privileged Information, Disclosure of Lobbying Activities, and Additional Single Copy Documents.  New associated automated compliance error and warning messages as well as business rules were also implemented.

Research.gov Support for Full Research Proposals

Research.gov now supports all Full Research proposals that conform to standard Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG) (NSF 20-1) requirements for formatting and document content including:

  • Single submissions from one organization (available since April 2018)
  • Single submission collaborative proposals with subawards (available since June 2019)
  • Separately submitted collaborative proposals from multiple organizations (available since March 2020)

 

Cost Sharing

The requirement to include cost sharing in a proposal is identified in the program solicitation, and Line M on the proposal budget will only be available for the select few programs that require cost sharing.  Line M will appear in year one of the prime organization’s proposal budget when the selected funding opportunity includes a mandatory cost sharing requirement.  Please see PAPPG Chapter II.C.2.g.xii. for additional information about NSF’s cost sharing policy.

New system-related cost sharing Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) are available in the “Proposal Sections” FAQ topic on the Research.gov About Proposal Preparation and Submission webpage.  A new automated compliance warning message and business rules for cost sharing have also been added.  Please refer to the updated Research.gov Compliance Checklist dated July 27, 2020 on the Automated Compliance Checking of NSF Proposals webpage.  Compliance checks triggering an error will prohibit proposal submission to NSF, whereas checks triggering a warning will allow proposal submission to NSF.

Single Copy Documents

Single Copy Documents are for certain categories of information that are submitted in conjunction with a proposal and are for NSF use only. They are not provided to reviewers for use in the review of the proposal.  Please see PAPPG (NSF 20-1) for Single Copy Document requirements.  Research.gov system-related details for Single Copy Documents are included below:

  • Deviation Authorization (PAPPG Chapter II.A.):
    • The Deviation Authorization link can be accessed both in the Optional proposal section as well as via the Deviation Authorization tab in the left navigation pane Optional menu.
    • Once the Deviation Authorization link is clicked in either location, a text entry field with a 256-character limit will be available on the screen.
    • After the Deviation Authorization text entry field is saved, the text is converted to a PDF file. Editing the text entry field and clicking save will generate a new PDF file.
  • Special Exception – Natural or Anthropogenic Event (PAPPG Chapter I.F.3.):
    • When the Special Exception to the Deadline Date Policy checkbox is selected on the Cover Sheet and the Cover Sheet is saved, the Special Exception – Natural or Anthropogenic Event upload section will be accessible either through a link in the blue information message at the top of the Cover Sheet, or by a link in the Other Information section of the Cover Sheet.
    • After a compliant Natural or Anthropogenic Event document has been uploaded, the listed deadline due date is bypassed allowing the Authorized Organizational Representative to submit the proposal in Research.gov after the listed deadline.
    • An error preventing proposal submission will be triggered if the Special Exception to the Deadline Date Policy checkbox is selected on the Cover Sheet, but a compliant document has not been uploaded in the Special Exception – Natural or Anthropogenic Event upload section.
    • Note that checking the Special Exception to the Deadline Date Policy box on the Cover Sheet and uploading a Special Exception – Natural or Anthropogenic Event document will allow proposal submission after the listed deadline in Research.gov, however acceptance remains at the discretion of the NSF Program Officer.
  • Proprietary or Privileged Information (PAPPG Chapter II.D.1.)
    • When the Proprietary or Privileged Information checkbox is selected on the Cover Sheet and the Cover Sheet is saved, the Proprietary or Privileged Information upload section will be accessible either through a link in the blue information message at the top of the Cover Sheet, or by a link in the Other Information section of the Cover Sheet.
    • An error preventing proposal submission will be triggered if the Proprietary or Privileged Information checkbox is selected on the Cover Sheet, but a compliant document has not been uploaded in the Proprietary or Privileged Information upload section.
  • Disclosure of Lobbying Activities (PAPPG Chapter I.G.2. and PAPPG Chapter II.C.1.d.)
    • When the Disclosure of Lobbying Activities checkbox is selected on the Cover Sheet and the Cover Sheet is saved, the Disclosure of Lobbying Activities upload section will be accessible either through a link in the blue information message at the top of the Cover Sheet, or by a link in the Other Information section of the Cover Sheet.
    • An error preventing proposal submission will be triggered if the Disclosure of Lobbying Activities checkbox is selected on the Cover Sheet, but a compliant document has not been uploaded in the Disclosure of Lobbying Activities upload section.
  • Additional Single Copy Documents
    • The Additional Single Copy Documents link can be accessed both in the Optional proposal section as well as via the Single Copy Documents tab in the left navigation pane Optional menu.  Once the Additional Single Copy Documents link is clicked in either location, an upload section will be available on the screen.
    • The Additional Single Copy Documents section supports multiple file uploads.

 

Other Related Changes for Single Copy Documents

  • New Automated Compliance Error Messages and Business Rules:  Please see the updated Research.gov Compliance Checklist dated July 27, 2020 on the Automated Compliance Checking of NSF Proposals webpage for additional details.  Compliance checks triggering an error will prohibit proposal submission to NSF, whereas checks triggering a warning will allow proposal submission to NSF.
  • New FAQs: New system-related Single Copy Document FAQs are available in the “Proposal Sections” FAQ topic on the Research.gov About Proposal Preparation and Submission webpage.

 

What’s Ahead in the Research.gov Proposal Submission System?

Features supporting the following types of proposals are planned for a late fall 2020 release in Research.gov:

  • Rapid Response Research (RAPID)
  • EArly-concept Grants for Exploratory Research (EAGER)
  • Research Advanced by Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering (RAISE)

NSF is also currently developing a Research.gov demo site that will be available for training purposes.  Stay tuned for additional information about these exciting developments in the coming months!

 

Help NSF Build Research.gov

Research.gov is being developed incrementally, and features are expanding with the goal of transitioning all proposal preparation and submission functionality from FastLane to Research.gov.  NSF strongly encourages the use of Research.gov where possible and wants feedback on your experience, so they can continue to make improvements.  Please submit your feedback on the Research.gov Feedback page (select “Proposal Preparation & Submission” under the Site Area dropdown menu).

NSF would appreciate you sharing this information with your colleagues.  If you have IT system-related questions, please contact the NSF Help Desk at 1-800-381-1532 (7:00 AM – 9:00 PM ET; Monday – Friday except federal holidays) or via rgov@nsf.gov.  Policy-related questions should be directed to policy@nsf.gov.

NSF looks forward to receiving your Research.gov proposals and your feedback!

 

Original post by NSF on 7/27/2020

FY2021 Funding Opportunities for the NIH Director’s Early Independence Award

The NIH Common Fund announces FY2021 funding opportunities for the NIH Director’s Early Independence Award in the High-Risk, High-Reward Research program.  The program provides unique opportunities for exceptionally creative scientists to pursue highly innovative approaches to address major challenges in biomedical or behavioral research.  Applications are welcome that propose any research topic relevant to the broad mission of NIH and from any eligible institution.  NIH especially encourages applications from women and members of groups that are underrepresented in NIH-funded research.

The Early Independence Award has separate funding opportunities available for COVID-19-related research to be supported by Emergency funds through the CARES Act.  Applicants should apply to the appropriate funding opportunity based on their research topic. Applications submitted to the Emergency and non-Emergency funding opportunities will be reviewed together at the same time using the same process.

FY2021 NIH Director’s Early Independence Award (DP5 – Clinical Trial Optional): RFA RM-20-014

Supports outstanding junior scientists with the intellect, scientific creativity, drive, and maturity to bypass the traditional postdoctoral training period and launch an independent research career.  Applicants must have recently completed or will soon complete her/his doctoral degree or clinical training and have the support and guarantee of an independent research position from a host institution.

  • Complete doctoral degree or clinical training between June 1, 2019 and September 30, 2021
  • In non-independent position at time of application
  • Cannot have served in a postdoctoral position more than 12 months following a previous, non-terminal degree
  • Single-PI applications only
  • Requires significant institutional commitment
  • Limited to two applications per institution
  • No preliminary data required
  • Up to $250,000 direct costs per year for up to 5 years
  • See website for more information and FAQs
  • Application deadline: September 4, 2020

FY2021 NIH Director’s Early Independence Award (DP5 – Clinical Trial Optional): COVID-19 Proposals RFA RM-20-021

Supports outstanding junior scientists with the intellect, scientific creativity, drive, and maturity bypass the traditional postdoctoral training period and launch an independent research career.  Applicants must have recently completed or will soon complete her/his doctoral degree or clinical training and have the support and guarantee of an independent research position from a host institution.

  • Proposal must be relevant to COVID-19 prevention, preparation, or response
  • Complete doctoral degree or clinical training between June 1, 2019 and September 30, 2021
  • In non-independent position at time of application
  • Cannot have served in a postdoctoral position more than 12 months following a previous, non-terminal degree
  • Single-PI applications only
  • Requires significant institutional commitment
  • Limited to two applications per institution
  • No preliminary data required
  • Up to $250,000 direct costs per year for up to 5 years
  • See website for more information and FAQs
  • Application deadline: September 4, 2020

The High-Risk High-Reward Research Program and other Common Fund programs are managed by the Office of Strategic Coordination, Division of Program Coordination, Planning, and Strategic Initiatives in the NIH Office of the Director, in partnership with the component NIH Institutes, Centers, and Offices.  The NIH Common Fund encourages collaboration and supports a series of exceptionally high impact, trans-NIH programs.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) –“The Nation’s Medical Research Agency” – includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U. S. Department of Health and Human Services.  It is the primary federal agency for conducting and supporting basic, clinical and translational medical research, and it investigates the causes, treatments and cures for both common and rare diseases.

For more information about NIH and its programs, visit the NIH website.

Original post by NIH on May 22, 2020

NIH Moving Ahead with FORMS-F Grant Application Form Update

Hopefully, you’ve seen the NIH notices (NOT-OD-20-026, NOT-OD-20-077), tweets, and previous Nexus post regarding the pending transition to an updated set of grant application forms they refer to as FORMS-F.   If so, you already know that you must use FORMS-F forms for grant application due dates on or after May 25, 2020 and FORMS-E for due dates on or before May 24, 2020.  You might have even started preparing your FORMS-F application.

Here are a few updates and tips to help navigate the transition:

  • FORMS-F application packages are now available on the active, non-parent funding opportunity announcements (FOAs).
    • Both FORMS-E and FORMS-F packages will be associated with the FOAs for a short transition period. Carefully choose the correct form package based on the targeted due date and Competition ID
    • All of the FORMS-E packages are planned to sunset on May 24 and, shortly after, will no longer appear as an option on active opportunities
  • FORMS-F application packages were not added to our parent announcements. Instead, NIH is in the process of reissuing each parent announcement with a new announcement number, updated opportunity text, and FORMS-F package.  Parent FOAs will be reissued 30-60 days prior to their first FORMS-F due dates.
    • Both the FORMS-E and FORMS-F versions of each parent FOA will be active for a short transition period.  If you plan to submit using a parent announcement for a due date on or after May 25, choose the parent announcement posted in 2020 and verify the Competition ID of the form package includes FORMS-F
    • ASSIST, Grants.gov Workspace and many system-to-system solutions have data copy features.  If you want to get started on your application using the FORMS-E FOA and package, you can use the copy feature to move your common data over to FORMS-F later.  Just make sure you are on FORMS-F forms and have followed all FORMS-F application instructions before submission
  • If you aren’t sure what an application package “Competition ID” is or where to find it, check out Do I Have the Right Form Version For My Application?
  • The How to Apply – Application Guide page includes application form instructions for both Version E and Version F.
    • Use Version E with FORMS-E and Version F with FORMS-F
    • Review the Significant Changes section of the Version F instructions to familiarize yourself with major instruction changes between Versions E and F
  • The biosketch, data table, and other format pages have also been updated with FORMS-F versions.  Format pages are approved formats to be used with specific grant application attachments.
    • In some cases (e.g., biosketch), only the expiration date was changed with the FORMS-F update.  NIH replaced the old version with the new one on our website and have indicated it is available for immediate use.  Since there were no changes to the format itself, either version can be used for FORMS-E and FORMS-F applicationsFor example, if you’re well on your way preparing the Participating Faculty Biosketches attachment for your May 25 training grant application and the biosketches you’ve collected have the old expiration date, it’s okay – you do not need to update all the biosketches to show the correct date.  Same goes for biosketches for senior/key personnel
    • In other cases (e.g., data tables), NIH has made substantive changes to the formats and have provided FORMS-E and FORMS-F versions that must be used with their corresponding form packages

Direct questions regarding the form update to:

NIH Office of Policy for Extramural Research Administration (OPERA)
Systems Policy Branch
Email: OPERAsystemspolicy@nih.gov

Resources related to form updates:

Original post by NIH April 6, 2020

NSF Current and Pending Support FAQs

NSF posted a FAQ on the current and pending support requirements. Here is the link.

Searching for NIH Funding Just Got a Little Easier

What’s new with the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts? In addition to faster, more precise search results, a few key filtering features have been updated.

Notices of Special Interest (NOSIs) are displayed in the results when searching either “Funding Opportunities” or “Notices.”

screenshot of search filters showing options to search all funding opportunities, all notices, etc.

The “Type of Funding Opportunities” filter now includes “Notice of Special Interest.”

Screenshot of Guide Search NOSI filter

Quickly find notices by organization.

Screenshot of organization filter

NIH publishes funding opportunities and notices in the NIH Guide daily and recaps the week’s postings every Friday afternoon via a Weekly NIH Funding Opportunities and Notices email to the NIH Guide LISTSERV. Subscribe to receive the weekly updates or to follow NIH on Twitter today!

NSF Informational EDGE Webinar: January 31, 2:00pm EST

The Division of Integrative Organismal Systems (IOS), together with the Divisions of Biological Infrastructure (DBI), Environmental Biology (DEB), and Molecular and Cellular Biosciences (MCB) in the Directorate for Biological Sciences at the National Science Foundation will host a webinar about the Enabling Discovery through GEnomic Tools (EDGE) program. The EDGE program recently released a new solicitation, NSF 20-532. Following a brief presentation, program directors from all of the Divisions will be available to answer questions from participants.

The goal of the EDGE program is to support genomic research that addresses the mechanistic basis of complex traits in diverse organisms within the context (environmental, developmental, social, and/or genomic) in which they function. The EDGE program also continues to support the development of innovative tools, technologies, resources, and infrastructure that advance biological research focused on the identification of the causal mechanisms connecting genes and phenotypes.

Information on how to join the webinar live can be found below. The webinar will also be recorded and posted on the IOS blog.

All are welcome to join and ask questions!

Participant Instructions to Register for/Join the EDGE Program Webinar on January 31, 2020:

Event: EDGE Program Webinar

Date/Time: Friday, January 31, 2020, from 2:00pm – 3:00pm Eastern Time

  • Event Number: 906 284 287
  • Event Password: Edge2020!
  • For audio: USA/Canada dial Toll-free: 1-888-946-8386 or Toll: 1-415-228-4878 and announce passcode EDGE.  To listen to audio via the internet go to:  https://event.on24.com/wcc/r/2172014-1/5220AC6F458CFD7CBCCB12BD5A4806AB
  • Captions: View real-time captions at: www.fedrcc.us/ by clicking “Join Now” and entering event ID # 4311899.
  • Questions:  Submit questions via WebEx Q&A for response during the live webinar.

Meeting Type
Webcast

Contacts
Edda Thiels, (703) 292-8167, ethiels@nsf.gov
Elizabeth Bell, (703) 292-7881, ebell@nsf.gov

Related programs and Divisions

Neural Systems
Behavioral Systems
Developmental Systems
Plant Genome Research Program
Physiological and Structural Systems
Division of Biological Infrastructure
Division of Environmental Biology
Division of Molecular and Cellular Biosciences

*Materials and a recording of the webinar will be available on the EDGE program website and the blogs of each of the Divisions in the Directorate for Biological Sciences following the webinar.

Original post by NSF on January 21, 2020In Announcement, Guidance, Science Communication, Solicitation

How Grants.gov Is Preparing for SAM’s Rollout of the Unique Entity Identifier (UEI)

Last July, there was an article with details about SAM.gov’s planned introduction of the Unique Entity Identifier (UEI), which is currently scheduled to replace the DUNS Number around the end of 2020. You can get the most up-to-date information about the UEI rollout on the GSA’s Unique Entity Identifier Update page.

In this post, Grants.gov applicants are prepared for what the UEI rollout will look like within the Grants.gov system – particularly, what users will see when working on an application or taking other actions within Workspace.

Fields formerly labeled “DUNS” within Grants.gov will now be labeled “UEI” starting in March 2020

What’s Changing?

It’s really quite simple:

  1. Fields formerly labeled “DUNS” within Grants.gov will be labeled “UEI” starting in March 2020 (see the screenshot above).
  2. For now, keep entering your DUNS Number when a field labeled “UEI” needs to be filled in.

To review, you can expect to begin seeing UEI labels in March 2020, when Grants.gov plans to implement the label change across the system in preparation for SAM.gov’s transition to the Unique Entity Identifier.

An orange banner on relevant pages that tells applicants to use their DUNS Number in the UEI field until further notice

When this happens, you will see an orange banner on relevant pages that tells applicants to use their DUNS Number in the UEI field until further notice.

Please bookmark and regularly check the GSA resource page mentioned at the top of this post. You may also find this Q&A published by GSA helpful.

Original post by Grants.gov on January 7, 2020

Grants.gov System Release 18.0 Preview

The next Grants.gov release is just around the corner. Here’s what you can expect later this month when R18.0 goes live on November 18th:

Read more of this post

FastLane and Research.gov Unavailable from 11/8/19 (8:00pm EST) until 11/12/19 (6:00am EST)

The National Science Foundation (NSF) is migrating its business applications to a modern and flexible platform from November 8 at 8:00 PM EST through November 12 at 6:00 AM EST. As part of this effort, NSF will also upgrade the alpha-numeric character set used by the FastLane and Research.gov systems to correct textual errors, such as special characters displaying as question marks (“?”) in proposals and project reports. This migration has been scheduled over the Veterans Day holiday weekend to minimize the impact of the systems downtime on the research community and NSF staff.

During this outage, there will be no access to these websites, proposals cannot be prepared or submitted in FastLane and Research.gov, and project reports and cash requests cannot be submitted in Research.gov. However, previously saved information and uploaded documents in FastLane and Research.gov, including in-progress proposals and project reports, will be accessible after the migration is completed.

If you have any questions or concerns please contact MBL Office of Sponsored Programs by email at awards@mbl.edu

Final Report on Reducing Administrative Burdens Associated with Research Involving Laboratory Animals

NIH is pleased to announce that last month they worked with the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to publish their final report on Reducing Administrative Burden for Researchers: Animal Care and Use in Research (NOT-OD-19-136).  This report, called for in the 21st Century Cures Act, is the culmination of more than two years of diligent work to address inconsistent and overlapping policies governing oversight of research involving animals, while ensuring research findings remain credible and research institutions safeguard animal welfare.

Regulations and policies overseeing federally-sponsored research help ensure NIH remains a responsible steward of public funds.  This extends to properly enforcing the public’s expectation on how laboratory animals will be used in biomedical research, teaching, and testing.  Many stakeholders have pointed out, rightfully so in some cases, that with federal regulations comes increasing reporting requirements which adversely affect research productivity without necessarily improving animal welfare.

Experts from the USDA, the FDA, and the NIH undertook much collaborative, thoughtful, and rigorous deliberation to get to this point.  More on their process can be found here, here, and here.  Their final report reflects, incorporates, and analyzes diverse perspectives of more than 1,300 researchers, animal welfare advocacy organizations, scientific professional societies, members of the public, and others who commented on an earlier draft version.  Investigators, generally speaking, supported the report’s recommendations to reduce various administrative hurdles.  But, importantly, they were also balanced with concerns raised by animal welfare organizations and the public to not lessen requirements in such a way that adversely effects the humane care and use of laboratory animals.

Below are some highlights.  You are encouraged to read the report for the full details and recommendations.

Opportunities exist to reduce duplicative regulations and policies.  These focus generally around areas such as inspections, animal protocol review, and institutional reporting.  For example, NIH will consider flexibilities in how and by whom semiannual inspections by Institutional Animal Care and Use Committees (IACUCs) are conducted.   It may be possible to streamline some IACUC animal protocol reviews, such as by using Designated Member Review for low-risk activities.  And, NIH and USDA will establish a process allowing annual reporting to both agencies on the same reporting schedule (such as through a streamlined data submission on a shared portal).

NIH recognizes the importance and value of better coordination across federal funders.  They will allow public comments for at least sixty days for all new significant policy guidances.  Building on that, guidances from NIH, USDA, and other federal funders will be harmonized as appropriate to reduce duplicative and inconsistent requirements.  NIH concurs with the suggestion to enhance training and resources across federal agencies.  One way to achieve this will be continuing to work with USDA colleagues to develop new industry-led training and web resources to strengthen IACUC activities that focus on reducing burden on investigators.

Keep an eye out for the next steps.  NIH is currently looking at all of the recommendations and thinking about possible ideas, guidance, and resources to address them.  Any planned changes will be implemented over the next couple years, along with a strategy that considers how effective they were. This time frame affords ample opportunity for your voice to still be heard along the way.

NIH would like to congratulate and thank colleagues Dr. Patricia Brown and Ms. Lori Hampton (both of the NIH Office of Laboratory Animal Welfare) for their leadership in helping to prepare the report and for their help in writing this summary.

Original post by NIH 9/25/2019