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Cluster Exploratory (CluE)


Program Solicitation
NSF 08-560

 

NSF Logo

National Science Foundation

Directorate for Computer & Information Science & Engineering
     Division of Information & Intelligent Systems
     Division of Computing and Communication Foundations
     Division of Computer and Network Systems

 

Full Proposal Deadline(s) (due by 5 p.m. proposer's local time):

July 17, 2008

SUMMARY OF PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS

General Information

Program Title: 

Cluster Exploratory  (CluE)

Synopsis of Program:

In the last five years, the private sector has launched a number of highly effective internet-scale applications powered by massively scaled, highly distributed computing resources.  Academic researchers have expressed a need for access to similar computing resources that will allow them to engage and explore this emerging and pervasive model of computing. 

Through the Cluster Exploratory (CluE) program, NSF-funded researchers will use software and services running on a Google-IBM cluster to explore innovative research ideas in data-intensive computing.  Proposals funded are expected to cover a range of activities that first lead to advances in computing research, but that also explore the potential of this computing paradigm to contribute to science and engineering research and to applications that promise benefit to society as a whole.

Cognizant Program Officer(s):

Applicable Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number(s):

  • 47.070 --- Computer and Information Science and Engineering

Award Information

Anticipated Type of Award:  Standard Grant or Continuing Grant

Estimated Number of Awards:    10 to  15   , depending on availability of funds. Projects funded will have cumulative budgets of up to $500,000, for durations of up to 2 years.

Anticipated Funding Amount:   $5,000,000

Eligibility Information

Organization Limit: 

Proposals may only be submitted by the following:

  • Non-profit, non-academic organizations: Independent museums, observatories, research labs, professional societies and similar organizations in the U.S. associated with educational or research activities.
  • Universities and Colleges: Universities and two- and four-year colleges (including community colleges) located and accredited in the US, acting on behalf of their faculty members. Such organizations also are referred to as academic institutions.

PI Limit: 

None Specified

Limit on Number of Proposals per Organization: 

None Specified

Limit on Number of Proposals per PI: 2 

An individual may appear as PI, co-PI, or Senior Personnel on no more than two proposals submitted in response to this solicitation.

Proposal Preparation and Submission Instructions

A. Proposal Preparation Instructions

  • Letters of Intent: Not Applicable
  • Preliminary Proposal Submission: Not Applicable
  • Full Proposals:

    • Full Proposals submitted via FastLane: NSF Proposal and Award Policies and Procedures Guide, Part I: Grant Proposal Guide (GPG) Guidelines apply. The complete text of the GPG is available electronically on the NSF website at: http://www.nsf.gov/publications/pub_summ.jsp?ods_key=gpg.

    • Full Proposals submitted via Grants.gov: NSF Grants.gov Application Guide: A Guide for the Preparation and Submission of NSF Applications via Grants.gov Guidelines apply (Note: The NSF Grants.gov Application Guide is available on the Grants.gov website and on the NSF website at: http://www.nsf.gov/bfa/dias/policy/docs/grantsgovguide.pdf)

B. Budgetary Information

  • Cost Sharing Requirements: Cost Sharing is not required under this solicitation.  
  • Indirect Cost (F&A) Limitations:  Not Applicable
  • Other Budgetary Limitations: Not Applicable

C. Due Dates

  • Full Proposal Deadline(s) (due by 5 p.m. proposer's local time):

    July 17, 2008

Proposal Review Information Criteria

Merit Review Criteria:   National Science Board approved criteria apply.

Award Administration Information

Award Conditions:   Additional award conditions apply. Please see the full text of this solicitation for further information.

Reporting Requirements:   Standard NSF reporting requirements apply.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Summary of Program Requirements

  1. Introduction

  2. Program Description

  3. Award Information

  4. Eligibility Information

  5. Proposal Preparation and Submission Instructions
    1. Proposal Preparation Instructions
    2. Budgetary Information
    3. Due Dates
    4. FastLane/Grants.gov Requirements

  6. NSF Proposal Processing and Review Procedures
    1. NSF Merit Review Criteria
    2. Review and Selection Process

  7. Award Administration Information
    1. Notification of the Award
    2. Award Conditions
    3. Reporting Requirements

  8. Agency Contacts

  9. Other Information

I. INTRODUCTION

Ultra-large-scale data processing applications powered by massively-scaled highly distributed computing resources are critical in many industry sectors including healthcare, financial, on-line retailing, and search service providers, and have become the norm in most American households. 

In addition to the widespread societal impact of data-intensive computing, this computational paradigm also promises significant opportunities to stimulate advances in science and engineering research, where large digital data collections are increasingly prevalent. Well-known examples include the Sloan Digital Sky Survey, the Visible Human, the IRIS Seismology Data Base, the Protein Data Bank and the Linguistic Data Consortium, however other valuable data collections or federations of data collections are being assembled on an ongoing basis. In many fields, it is now possible to pose hypotheses and test them by looking in databases of already collected information.   Further, the possibility of significant discovery by interconnecting different data sources is extraordinarily appealing.

In data-intensive computing, the sheer volume of data is the dominant performance parameter.  Storage and computation are co-located, enabling large-scale parallelism over terabytes of data. This scale of computing supports applications specified in high-level programming primitives, where the run-time system manages parallelism and data access. Supporting architectures must be extremely fault-tolerant and exhibit high degrees of reliability and availability. 

The Cluster Exploratory (CluE) program has been designed to provide academic researchers with access to massively-scaled, highly-distributed computing resources supported by Google and IBM.  While the main focus of the program is the stimulation of research advances in computing, the potential to stimulate simultaneous advances in other fields of science and engineering is also recognized and encouraged.

II. PROGRAM DESCRIPTION

On October 8, 2007, Google and IBM launched the Academic Cluster Computing Initiative[1] and announced they had teamed to provide six universities access to a large-scale computing cluster together with the software and services to use it effectively.[2]  On February 25, 2008, NSF joined and extended this initiative, partnering with Google and IBM to broaden the reach of this powerful computing resource to academic researchers throughout the country.

With access to the Google-IBM computing resource and services, academic researchers will be able to pursue fundamental, disruptive research in data-intensive computing, and to explore novel new applications. The system will provide a powerful resource for large-scale data analysis, mining and visualization in addition to support for Internet-scale computing applications.  It will also serve as a tool for educating the next generation of scientists and engineers, teaching students how to build, use and manage data-intensive computing systems.

Within the CluE program, data-intensive computing is intended to encompass analyses of massive data sets in a large-scale cluster computing environment.  Emphasis is placed on the data-intensive nature of computation, rather than on the computing cluster.  Investigators should consider the Google/IBM cluster an active storage system rather than a compute cluster; the chief characteristic is massive data storage with compute cycles nearby.  

The CluE program invites researchers to submit proposals that describe new, innovative use of the cluster, and/or that probe the possibilities and fundamental limits of the computing paradigm it enables.   Since this program provides researchers with access to the Google-IBM resource, proposals must clearly describe why access to the cluster will significantly advance the line of research inquiry. 

Access to the Google-IBM cluster will allow the research community to explore scientific questions such as:

  • What are the fundamental capabilities and limitations of this computing paradigm?
  • What new programming abstractions (including models, languages, algorithms) can accentuate these fundamental capabilities?
  • How can we automatically manage the hardware and software of these systems?  
  • What (new) applications can best exploit this computing paradigm?  
  • What unique, public data resources might be created and demonstrated for use by specific research communities? 
  • Can existing tools be modified and/or new programming abstractions for such a data-intensive computing environment be developed to solve problems unsolvable any other way? 
  • Can old problems be solved in simpler or more efficient ways? 

Note: Proposals that do not emphasize data-intensive computing will be deemed to be out of scope and will be returned without review. 

The CluE program is the initial step in a broader CISE-wide initiative on data-intensive computing, the latter of which will be launched in FY 2009.  While the CluE program provides funded researchers with access to the Google-IBM cluster to foster investigations in data-intensive computing, the broader CISE-wide initiative will support investigators who have access to any cluster or comparable data-intensive computational resource.

Other Essential Information

Awardee institutions will be required to negotiate and execute a usage agreement with Google and IBM before access to the cluster will be granted to any project personnel.  Examples of typical usage agreements for private and state colleges and universities are available at: http://www.nsf.gov/clue.  PIs are urged to examine these documents and to consult with their appropriate institutional representatives as soon as possible to expedite the subsequent negotiation should they receive awards under this solicitation.  No access to the cluster will be granted without a properly executed usage agreement in place.

The Google-IBM cluster contains well over a thousand processors connected to terabytes of memory and hundreds of terabytes of storage with internal networking as well as a substantial external network connection. When fully built out, the cluster will comprise approximately 1,600 processors. The system will be configured with open source software to include Linux and Apache Hadoop[3] - a large-scale distributed computing platform inspired by Google's MapReduce[4] and the Google File System.[5] IBM’s Tivoli[6] software will also be used for management, monitoring and dynamic resource provisioning of the cluster.

Tutorial information describing the programming environment of the Google-IBM academic cluster available via the CluE program can be found on the Google Code University website.[7] Much of this material was developed in collaboration with the University of Washington, and all of it is available under permissive licenses such as the Creative Commons Attribution License.

For at least the first year of the program, it will not be possible for PIs to change the operating environment of the cluster. Proposals requiring changes to the operational environment or requiring special access to the cluster hardware will be returned without review.

Since CluE is a new program, many of the logistical details related to operation of the Google-IBM cluster as a research platform are under active discussion and will continue to evolve over the life of the program. It is expected that the experience of the first year’s awardees will inform subsequent refinement of processes, such as cluster allocation and data loading.  Proposers are advised that the cluster is commodity hardware maintained on a “best effort” basis, so fixed processor allocations cannot be strictly guaranteed. Allocation is actually “priority” on fixed number of processors and background use of idle processors.  Allocations on the cluster will be made post award for authorized users. The exact mechanism will be worked out by Google and IBM with the first set of awardees.  The procedure for communicating allocation needs will be documented at http://www.nsf.gov/clue.

Modest quantities (a few hundred gigabytes) of data can be loaded on the cluster over the Internet.  Some projects may require the mounting of large (terabytes +) quantities of data on the cluster. The process for loading data is expected to evolve over the life of the program and will be worked out with each project team on a case-by-case basis post award.  It is anticipated that a growing number of public data sets will be available on the cluster for use by awardees. A catalog of these data sets will be accessible via: http://www.nsf.gov/clue. Data created by awardees will be retained on the cluster and become public, i.e., it will be accessible by other authorized cluster users.

III. AWARD INFORMATION

Projects funded will have cumulative budgets of up to $500,000, for durations of up to 2 years. Estimated program budget, number of awards and average award size/duration are subject to the availability of funds.

IV. ELIGIBILITY INFORMATION

Organization Limit: 

Proposals may only be submitted by the following:
  • Non-profit, non-academic organizations: Independent museums, observatories, research labs, professional societies and similar organizations in the U.S. associated with educational or research activities.
  • Universities and Colleges: Universities and two- and four-year colleges (including community colleges) located and accredited in the US, acting on behalf of their faculty members. Such organizations also are referred to as academic institutions.

PI Limit: 

None Specified

Limit on Number of Proposals per Organization: 

None Specified

Limit on Number of Proposals per PI: 2 

An individual may appear as PI, co-PI, or Senior Personnel on no more than two proposals submitted in response to this solicitation.

Additional Eligibility Info:

V. PROPOSAL PREPARATION AND SUBMISSION INSTRUCTIONS

A. Proposal Preparation Instructions

Full Proposal Preparation Instructions: Proposers may opt to submit proposals in response to this Program Solicitation via Grants.gov or via the NSF FastLane system.

  • Full proposals submitted via FastLane: Proposals submitted in response to this program solicitation should be prepared and submitted in accordance with the general guidelines contained in the NSF Grant Proposal Guide (GPG). The complete text of the GPG is available electronically on the NSF website at: http://www.nsf.gov/publications/pub_summ.jsp?ods_key=gpg. Paper copies of the GPG may be obtained from the NSF Publications Clearinghouse, telephone (703) 292-7827 or by e-mail from pubs@nsf.gov. Proposers are reminded to identify this program solicitation number in the program solicitation block on the NSF Cover Sheet For Proposal to the National Science Foundation. Compliance with this requirement is critical to determining the relevant proposal processing guidelines. Failure to submit this information may delay processing.
  • Full proposals submitted via Grants.gov: Proposals submitted in response to this program solicitation via Grants.gov should be prepared and submitted in accordance with the NSF Grants.gov Application Guide: A Guide for the Preparation and Submission of NSF Applications via Grants.gov. The complete text of the NSF Grants.gov Application Guide is available on the Grants.gov website and on the NSF website at: (http://www.nsf.gov/bfa/dias/policy/docs/grantsgovguide.pdf). To obtain copies of the Application Guide and Application Forms Package, click on the Apply tab on the Grants.gov site, then click on the Apply Step 1: Download a Grant Application Package and Application Instructions link and enter the funding opportunity number, (the program solicitation number without the NSF prefix) and press the Download Package button. Paper copies of the Grants.gov Application Guide also may be obtained from the NSF Publications Clearinghouse, telephone (703) 292-7827 or by e-mail from pubs@nsf.gov.

In determining which method to utilize in the electronic preparation and submission of the proposal, please note the following:

Collaborative Proposals. All collaborative proposals submitted as separate submissions from multiple organizations must be submitted via the NSF FastLane system. Chapter II, Section D.3 of the Grant Proposal Guide provides additional information on collaborative proposals.

B. Budgetary Information

Cost Sharing:   Cost sharing is not required under this solicitation.

Budget Preparation Instructions:  PIs should budget up to $5,000 in each project year for travel to send up to 2 persons to an annual PI meeting.

C. Due Dates

  • Full Proposal Deadline(s) (due by 5 p.m. proposer's local time):

    July 17, 2008

D. FastLane/Grants.gov Requirements

  • For Proposals Submitted Via FastLane:

    Detailed technical instructions regarding the technical aspects of preparation and submission via FastLane are available at: https://www.fastlane.nsf.gov/a1/newstan.htm. For FastLane user support, call the FastLane Help Desk at 1-800-673-6188 or e-mail fastlane@nsf.gov. The FastLane Help Desk answers general technical questions related to the use of the FastLane system. Specific questions related to this program solicitation should be referred to the NSF program staff contact(s) listed in Section VIII of this funding opportunity.

    Submission of Electronically Signed Cover Sheets. The Authorized Organizational Representative (AOR) must electronically sign the proposal Cover Sheet to submit the required proposal certifications (see Chapter II, Section C of the Grant Proposal Guide for a listing of the certifications). The AOR must provide the required electronic certifications within five working days following the electronic submission of the proposal. Further instructions regarding this process are available on the FastLane Website at: https://www.fastlane.nsf.gov/fastlane.jsp.

  • For Proposals Submitted Via Grants.gov:

  • Before using Grants.gov for the first time, each organization must register to create an institutional profile. Once registered, the applicant's organization can then apply for any federal grant on the Grants.gov website. The Grants.gov's Grant Community User Guide is a comprehensive reference document that provides technical information about Grants.gov. Proposers can download the User Guide as a Microsoft Word document or as a PDF document. The Grants.gov User Guide is available at: http://www.grants.gov/CustomerSupport. In addition, the NSF Grants.gov Application Guide provides additional technical guidance regarding preparation of proposals via Grants.gov. For Grants.gov user support, contact the Grants.gov Contact Center at 1-800-518-4726 or by email: support@grants.gov. The Grants.gov Contact Center answers general technical questions related to the use of Grants.gov. Specific questions related to this program solicitation should be referred to the NSF program staff contact(s) listed in Section VIII of this solicitation.

    Submitting the Proposal: Once all documents have been completed, the Authorized Organizational Representative (AOR) must submit the application to Grants.gov and verify the desired funding opportunity and agency to which the application is submitted. The AOR must then sign and submit the application to Grants.gov. The completed application will be transferred to the NSF FastLane system for further processing.

VI. NSF PROPOSAL PROCESSING AND REVIEW PROCEDURES   

Proposals received by NSF are assigned to the appropriate NSF program where they will be reviewed if they meet NSF proposal preparation requirements. All proposals are carefully reviewed by a scientist, engineer, or educator serving as an NSF Program Officer, and usually by three to ten other persons outside NSF who are experts in the particular fields represented by the proposal. These reviewers are selected by Program Officers charged with the oversight of the review process. Proposers are invited to suggest names of persons they believe are especially well qualified to review the proposal and/or persons they would prefer not review the proposal. These suggestions may serve as one source in the reviewer selection process at the Program Officer's discretion. Submission of such names, however, is optional. Care is taken to ensure that reviewers have no conflicts of interest with the proposal.

A. NSF Merit Review Criteria

All NSF proposals are evaluated through use of the two National Science Board (NSB)-approved merit review criteria: intellectual merit and the broader impacts of the proposed effort. In some instances, however, NSF will employ additional criteria as required to highlight the specific objectives of certain programs and activities.

The two NSB-approved merit review criteria are listed below. The criteria include considerations that help define them. These considerations are suggestions and not all will apply to any given proposal. While proposers must address both merit review criteria, reviewers will be asked to address only those considerations that are relevant to the proposal being considered and for which the reviewer is qualified to make judgements.

What is the intellectual merit of the proposed activity?
How important is the proposed activity to advancing knowledge and understanding within its own field or across different fields? How well qualified is the proposer (individual or team) to conduct the project? (If appropriate, the reviewer will comment on the quality of the prior work.) To what extent does the proposed activity suggest and explore creative, original, or potentially transformative concepts? How well conceived and organized is the proposed activity? Is there sufficient access to resources?

What are the broader impacts of the proposed activity?
How well does the activity advance discovery and understanding while promoting teaching, training, and learning? How well does the proposed activity broaden the participation of underrepresented groups (e.g., gender, ethnicity, disability, geographic, etc.)? To what extent will it enhance the infrastructure for research and education, such as facilities, instrumentation, networks, and partnerships? Will the results be disseminated broadly to enhance scientific and technological understanding? What may be the benefits of the proposed activity to society?

Examples illustrating activities likely to demonstrate broader impacts are available electronically on the NSF website at: http://www.nsf.gov/pubs/gpg/broaderimpacts.pdf.

NSF staff also will give careful consideration to the following in making funding decisions:

Integration of Research and Education
One of the principal strategies in support of NSF's goals is to foster integration of research and education through the programs, projects, and activities it supports at academic and research institutions. These institutions provide abundant opportunities where individuals may concurrently assume responsibilities as researchers, educators, and students and where all can engage in joint efforts that infuse education with the excitement of discovery and enrich research through the diversity of learning perspectives.

Integrating Diversity into NSF Programs, Projects, and Activities
Broadening opportunities and enabling the participation of all citizens -- women and men, underrepresented minorities, and persons with disabilities -- is essential to the health and vitality of science and engineering. NSF is committed to this principle of diversity and deems it central to the programs, projects, and activities it considers and supports.

B. Review and Selection Process

Proposals submitted in response to this program solicitation will be reviewed by Ad hoc Review and/or Panel Review.

Reviewers will be asked to formulate a recommendation to either support or decline each proposal. The Program Officer assigned to manage the proposal's review will consider the advice of reviewers and will formulate a recommendation.

After scientific, technical and programmatic review and consideration of appropriate factors, the NSF Program Officer recommends to the cognizant Division Director whether the proposal should be declined or recommended for award. NSF is striving to be able to tell applicants whether their proposals have been declined or recommended for funding within six months. The time interval begins on the deadline or target date, or receipt date, whichever is later.  The interval ends when the Division Director accepts the Program Officer's recommendation.

A summary rating and accompanying narrative will be completed and submitted by each reviewer. In all cases, reviews are treated as confidential documents. Verbatim copies of reviews, excluding the names of the reviewers, are sent to the Principal Investigator/Project Director by the Program Officer.  In addition, the proposer will receive an explanation of the decision to award or decline funding.

In all cases, after programmatic approval has been obtained, the proposals recommended for funding will be forwarded to the Division of Grants and Agreements for review of business, financial, and policy implications and the processing and issuance of a grant or other agreement. Proposers are cautioned that only a Grants and Agreements Officer may make commitments, obligations or awards on behalf of NSF or authorize the expenditure of funds. No commitment on the part of NSF should be inferred from technical or budgetary discussions with a NSF Program Officer. A Principal Investigator or organization that makes financial or personnel commitments in the absence of a grant or cooperative agreement signed by the NSF Grants and Agreements Officer does so at their own risk.

VII. AWARD ADMINISTRATION INFORMATION

A. Notification of the Award

Notification of the award is made to the submitting organization by a Grants Officer in the Division of Grants and Agreements. Organizations whose proposals are declined will be advised as promptly as possible by the cognizant NSF Program administering the program. Verbatim copies of reviews, not including the identity of the reviewer, will be provided automatically to the Principal Investigator. (See Section VI.B. for additional information on the review process.)

B. Award Conditions

An NSF award consists of: (1) the award letter, which includes any special provisions applicable to the award and any numbered amendments thereto; (2) the budget, which indicates the amounts, by categories of expense, on which NSF has based its support (or otherwise communicates any specific approvals or disapprovals of proposed expenditures); (3) the proposal referenced in the award letter; (4) the applicable award conditions, such as Grant General Conditions (GC-1); * or Research Terms and Conditions * and (5) any announcement or other NSF issuance that may be incorporated by reference in the award letter. Cooperative agreements also are administered in accordance with NSF Cooperative Agreement Financial and Administrative Terms and Conditions (CA-FATC) and the applicable Programmatic Terms and Conditions. NSF awards are electronically signed by an NSF Grants and Agreements Officer and transmitted electronically to the organization via e-mail.

*These documents may be accessed electronically on NSF's Website at http://www.nsf.gov/awards/managing/award_conditions.jsp?org=NSF. Paper copies may be obtained from the NSF Publications Clearinghouse, telephone (703) 292-7827 or by e-mail from pubs@nsf.gov.

More comprehensive information on NSF Award Conditions and other important information on the administration of NSF awards is contained in the NSF Award & Administration Guide (AAG) Chapter II, available electronically on the NSF Website at http://www.nsf.gov/publications/pub_summ.jsp?ods_key=aag.

Special Award Conditions:  Institutions receiving awards under the CluE program will be required to negotiate and execute a usage agreement with Google and IBM within 90 days of the award date.

C. Reporting Requirements

For all multi-year grants (including both standard and continuing grants), the Principal Investigator must submit an annual project report to the cognizant Program Officer at least 90 days before the end of the current budget period. (Some programs or awards require more frequent project reports). Within 90 days after expiration of a grant, the PI also is required to submit a final project report.

Failure to provide the required annual or final project reports will delay NSF review and processing of any future funding increments as well as any pending proposals for that PI. PIs should examine the formats of the required reports in advance to assure availability of required data.

PIs are required to use NSF's electronic project-reporting system, available through FastLane, for preparation and submission of annual and final project reports.  Such reports provide information on activities and findings, project participants (individual and organizational) publications; and, other specific products and contributions.  PIs will not be required to re-enter information previously provided, either with a proposal or in earlier updates using the electronic system.  Submission of the report via FastLane constitutes certification by the PI that the contents of the report are accurate and complete.

VIII. AGENCY CONTACTS

General inquiries regarding this program should be made to:

For questions related to the use of FastLane, contact:

For questions relating to Grants.gov contact:

  • Grants.gov Contact Center: If the Authorized Organizational Representatives (AOR) has not received a confirmation message from Grants.gov within 48 hours of submission of application, please contact via telephone: 1-800-518-4726; e-mail: support@grants.gov.

IX. OTHER INFORMATION

The NSF Website provides the most comprehensive source of information on NSF Directorates (including contact information), programs and funding opportunities. Use of this Website by potential proposers is strongly encouraged. In addition, MyNSF (formerly the Custom News Service) is an information-delivery system designed to keep potential proposers and other interested parties apprised of new NSF funding opportunities and publications, important changes in proposal and award policies and procedures, and upcoming NSF Regional Grants Conferences. Subscribers are informed through e-mail or the user's Web browser each time new publications are issued that match their identified interests. MyNSF also is available on NSF's Website at http://www.nsf.gov/mynsf/.

Grants.gov provides an additional electronic capability to search for Federal government-wide grant opportunities. NSF funding opportunities may be accessed via this new mechanism. Further information on Grants.gov may be obtained at http://www.grants.gov.

ABOUT THE NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION

The National Science Foundation (NSF) is an independent Federal agency created by the National Science Foundation Act of 1950, as amended (42 USC 1861-75). The Act states the purpose of the NSF is "to promote the progress of science; [and] to advance the national health, prosperity, and welfare by supporting research and education in all fields of science and engineering."

NSF funds research and education in most fields of science and engineering. It does this through grants and cooperative agreements to more than 2,000 colleges, universities, K-12 school systems, businesses, informal science organizations and other research organizations throughout the US. The Foundation accounts for about one-fourth of Federal support to academic institutions for basic research.

NSF receives approximately 40,000 proposals each year for research, education and training projects, of which approximately 11,000 are funded. In addition, the Foundation receives several thousand applications for graduate and postdoctoral fellowships. The agency operates no laboratories itself but does support National Research Centers, user facilities, certain oceanographic vessels and Antarctic research stations. The Foundation also supports cooperative research between universities and industry, US participation in international scientific and engineering efforts, and educational activities at every academic level.

Facilitation Awards for Scientists and Engineers with Disabilities provide funding for special assistance or equipment to enable persons with disabilities to work on NSF-supported projects. See Grant Proposal Guide Chapter II, Section D.2 for instructions regarding preparation of these types of proposals.

The National Science Foundation has Telephonic Device for the Deaf (TDD) and Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) capabilities that enable individuals with hearing impairments to communicate with the Foundation about NSF programs, employment or general information. TDD may be accessed at (703) 292-5090 and (800) 281-8749, FIRS at (800) 877-8339.

The National Science Foundation Information Center may be reached at (703) 292-5111.

The National Science Foundation promotes and advances scientific progress in the United States by competitively awarding grants and cooperative agreements for research and education in the sciences, mathematics, and engineering.

To get the latest information about program deadlines, to download copies of NSF publications, and to access abstracts of awards, visit the NSF Website at http://www.nsf.gov

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PRIVACY ACT AND PUBLIC BURDEN STATEMENTS

The information requested on proposal forms and project reports is solicited under the authority of the National Science Foundation Act of 1950, as amended. The information on proposal forms will be used in connection with the selection of qualified proposals; and project reports submitted by awardees will be used for program evaluation and reporting within the Executive Branch and to Congress. The information requested may be disclosed to qualified reviewers and staff assistants as part of the proposal review process; to proposer institutions/grantees to provide or obtain data regarding the proposal review process, award decisions, or the administration of awards; to government contractors, experts, volunteers and researchers and educators as necessary to complete assigned work; to other government agencies or other entities needing information regarding applicants or nominees as part of a joint application review process, or in order to coordinate programs or policy; and to another Federal agency, court, or party in a court or Federal administrative proceeding if the government is a party. Information about Principal Investigators may be added to the Reviewer file and used to select potential candidates to serve as peer reviewers or advisory committee members. See Systems of Records, NSF-50, "Principal Investigator/Proposal File and Associated Records," 69 Federal Register 26410 (May 12, 2004), and NSF-51, "Reviewer/Proposal File and Associated Records, " 69 Federal Register 26410 (May 12, 2004). Submission of the information is voluntary. Failure to provide full and complete information, however, may reduce the possibility of receiving an award.

An agency may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to, an information collection unless it displays a valid Office of Management and Budget (OMB) control number. The OMB control number for this collection is 3145-0058. Public reporting burden for this collection of information is estimated to average 120 hours per response, including the time for reviewing instructions. Send comments regarding the burden estimate and any other aspect of this collection of information, including suggestions for reducing this burden, to:

Suzanne H. Plimpton
Reports Clearance Officer
Division of Administrative Services
National Science Foundation
Arlington, VA 22230



 

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