Long-Term Ecological Research
Important Notice to Proposers
A revised version of the NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG), NSF 13-1, was issued on October 4, 2012 and is effective for proposals submitted, or due, on or after January 14, 2013. Please be advised that, depending on the specified due date, the guidelines contained in NSF 13-1 may apply to proposals submitted in response to this funding opportunity.
Please be aware that significant changes have been made to the PAPPG to implement revised merit review criteria based on the National Science Board (NSB) report, National Science Foundation's Merit Review Criteria: Review and Revisions. While the two merit review criteria remain unchanged (Intellectual Merit and Broader Impacts), guidance has been provided to clarify and improve the function of the criteria. Changes will affect the project summary and project description sections of proposals. Annual and final reports also will be affected.
A by-chapter summary of this and other significant changes is provided at the beginning of both the Grant Proposal Guide and the Award & Administration Guide.
Current but no Longer Receiving Proposals
To address ecological questions that cannot be resolved with short-term observations or experiments, NSF established the Long Term Ecological Research Program (LTER) in 1980.Three unique components differentiate LTER research from projects supported by other NSF programs: 1) the research is located at specific sites chosen to represent major ecosystem types or natural biomes; 2) it emphasizes the study of phenomena over long periods of time, based upon data collection in five core areas; and 3) projects include significant integrative, cross-site, network-wide research. Research at LTER sites provides experiments, databases, and research programs for use by other scientists. It must test important ecological or ecosystem theories including, but not limited to, ecosystem stability, biodiversity, community structure, and energy flow. Recognizing that the value of long-term data extends beyond use at any individual site, NSF requires that data collected by all LTER sites be made broadly accessible.
Since its origin in 1980, the LTER program has grown in size and mandate. It currently supports 26 active sites representing major biotic regions of the continental US and Alaska, the marine environment, and the Antarctic continent. Its disciplinary scope includes population and community ecology, ecosystem science, evolutionary biology, phylogenetic systematics, social and economic sciences, urban ecology, oceanography, mathematics, computer science, and science education. The existence of a network across sites allows for continental-scale questions to be addressed.
What Has Been Funded (Recent Awards Made Through This Program, with Abstracts)
Map of Recent Awards Made Through This Program