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NSF Earth Sciences Express Update - Summer 2021, Vol. 1

NSF Earth Sciences Express Update - Summer 2021, Vol. 1 Banner

NSF Earth Sciences Express Update - Summer 2021, Vol. 1

July 7, 2021

EAR Division Director Letter to the Community
Dr. Steven Goldstein has written a letter to the EAR community summarizing possible budgetary increases to NSF, new EAR initiatives concerning geophysical instrumentation and synchrotron facilities, and solicitations aimed at early career scientists and increasing diversity.

GEO Staff Changes
EAR would like to thank GEO Assistant Director (AD) Dr. William Easterling and Deputy Assistant Director (DAD) Dr. Scott Borg for their service to NSF and GEO. In their place, Dr. Alexandra (Alex) Isern will serve as the new Acting AD for GEO while former EAR Division Director, Dr. Lina Patino will serve as Acting DAD. The search for Dr. Easterling’s successor is on-going.

Spring GEO Advisory Committee Meeting
The Advisory Committee for Geosciences (AC GEO) met April 14 and 15 for its bi-annual meeting. The agenda included discussions of COVID-19 impacts, the NASEM Earth System Science Study, and reports from the four GEO organizational units. At the meeting, the EAR subcommittee presented its review and recommendations on instrumentation for a future geodesy and seismology facility. The recommendations were published in a formal report. AC GEO also held a joint session with the Advisory Committee for Biological Sciences (AC BIO) on April 15 that can be viewed here. Spring meeting notes will be available after they are approved during the Fall meeting (October 13-14).

DCL Highlight: New Timeline for Future Geophysical Facility Competition
As indicated in NSF 20-037, NSF has been planning a competition for a future cooperative agreement to support a single, unified geophysical facility as the successor to SAGE and GAGE. The future competition will be delayed in order to enable NSF time to work with agency partners to thoughtfully respond to the recommendations in the portfolio review. The current awards for operations of SAGE and GAGE will be extended to ensure continuity of services until the new award is in place.

Solicitation Updates
Solicitation Highlight: 21-592 Community Facility Support: Synchrotron-based analytical capabilities advancing Earth and Environmental Sciences research and training
Geoinformatics 21-583
Geomorphology and Land-use Dynamics 21-547
Geoscience Opportunities for Leadership in Diversity (GOLD) PD 21-178Y 

Annual Report Reminder
As a reminder, annual reports are due no later than 90 days prior to the end of the current budget period (original award start date). This allows Program Officers time to review and approve reports. In the Project Report System, reports are considered due during the 90-day period and overdue after the 90-day period ends. For more detailed information, refer to PAPPG VII.D or the Project Report FAQ.

Transition to
Per Important Notice No. 147, NSF is taking proactive steps to incrementally move the preparation and submission of all proposals from FastLane to with a tentative target date for completion by sometime in 2022. Funding opportunities clearly specify whether submission via is required or available.
To learn more:
• List of training resources
Demo video: key proposal presentation features, proposal file updates, and budget revisions
CAREER proposal submission timeline, presentation, and webinar recording (passcode: @QR7fF*y)

Approaching Proposal Deadlines
NSF 21-586 EPSCoR RII Track-1 (letter of intent)
7/22 NSF 20-542 HBCU - Excellence in Research (letter of intent)
7/26 NSF 20-525 NSF Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER)
8/2  NSF 20-554 ADVANCE: Organizational Change for Gender Equity in STEM Academic Professions  (letter of intent), 8/6 (full proposal)
8/16  NSF 21-583 Geoinformatics
8/23 NSF 21-577 Grand Challenges in Integrative Geospace Sciences: Advancing National Space Weather Expertise and Research toward Societal Resilience (ANSWERS)
8/25 NSF 19-582 Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU)
9/6 NSF 21-536 National Research Traineeships
9/8 NSF 20-570 Industry-University Cooperative Research Centers Program (IUCRC) 
9/20 NSF 21-537 Midscale Research Infrastructure-2 (full proposal)
9/28  NSF 16-572 Cooperative Studies of the Earth's Depp Interior (CSEDI)

Dear Colleague Letters
NSF 21-055 Intent to support a Workshop to Explore Novel Ideas for Future Scientific, Educational, and Cultural Activities with the Arecibo Observatory
NSF 21-064 Supporting Use of Existing Data and Samples in Atmospheric Sciences Research and Education
NSF 21-068 Research Collaboration Opportunity in Europe for NSF Awardees
NSF 21-071 Geoscience Opportunities for Leadership in Diversity - Expanding the Network (GOLD-EN)
NSF 21-076 A New Supplemental Funding Opportunity for Skills Training in Advanced Research & Technology (START)
NSF 21-077 Update on NSF's Efforts to Improve the Inclusion of Local and Indigenous Voices in Arctic Research
NSF 21-078 - Supplements to Broaden Networks and partnerships between National Science Foundation's (NSF) Established Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) Research Infrastructure Improvement Program (RII) Track-2 Projects and Minority Serving Institutions
NSF 21-088 Envisioning the Future of NSF EPSCoR
NSF 21-090 International Collaboration Supplements in Quantum Information Science and Engineering Research

EAR-funded Research in the News

Community News
URGE (Unlearning Racism in Geoscience)
The EAR-funded URGE program is designed to be a “community-wide journal-reading and policy-design curriculum to help Geoscientists unlearn racism and improve accessibility, justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion (AJEDI) in our discipline.” “URGE strongly believes that our community needs to shift our culture from one that is, at best, passively not racist to one that is actively anti-racist.” The first semester of URGE curriculum ran from January 18 to May 7, 2021, with 4,500 geoscientists in 300 groups participating and providing weekly deliverables, all of which are publicly available.

URGE Leadership plans to facilitate check-ins at upcoming major conferences as well as online. URGE recently received additional NSF funding to guide participants through the refinement of the anti-racist policies and codes of conduct developed from January to May 2021. If you were a member of the URGE program, please provide feedback using the survey you received ASAP.

EAR Participation in Critical Aspects of Sustainability Program 
The Petrology and Geochemistry, Geobiology and Low-Temperature Geochemistry, and Frontier Research in Earth Sciences programs are participating in the crosscutting program Critical Aspects of Sustainability and welcome the submission of fundamental and transformational geosciences projects addressing research on Critical Minerals and Materials in the Earth.

EoS Features EAR Success
The April issue of Eos featured NSF’s GeoPRISMS Program. GeoPRISMS is a decadal program funded by NSF that supports interdisciplinary and shoreline crossing activities that combine marine and terrestrial approach to study the margins evolution and their dynamics. Eos also published an article about PiAutoStage, an EAR PI-developed microscopy tool that can digitize microscope samples and share from a distance.

2022 Alan T. Waterman Award nominations to open mid-July
Congress established the Alan T. Waterman Award in August 1975 to mark the 25th Anniversary of the National Science Foundation and to honor its first Director. The annual award recognizes an outstanding young researcher in any field of science or engineering supported by the National Science Foundation. In addition to a medal, the awardee receives a grant of $1,000,000 over a five-year period for scientific research or advanced study in the mathematical, physical, biological, engineering, social, or other sciences at the institution of the recipient's choice.

Other News
NSF is sponsoring the National Workshop: Resilient Supply of Critical Minerals that is being organized by Missouri S&T. The workshop will be hosted online on August 2-3, 2021. For more information, visit the workshop website.

Science Matters Blog: 5 Tips for your Broader Impacts Statement  



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