International Research Fellowship Program (IRFP)

Program Solicitation
NSF 02-149
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National Science Foundation
Directorate for Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences
      Office of International Science and Engineering

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

    Second Tuesday in October


General Information

Program Title:

International Research Fellowship Program (IRFP)

Synopsis of Program:

The objective of the International Research Fellowship Program (IRFP) is to introduce scientists and engineers in the early stages of their careers to research opportunities abroad, thereby furthering NSF's goal of creating a diverse, competitive, and globally-engaged U.S. workforce of scientists, engineers, technologists and well-prepared citizens.  These awards are available in any field of science and engineering research and education supported by NSF. Foreign science or engineering centers and other centers of excellence in all geographic regions are eligible host institutions. 

Cognizant Program Officer(s):

  • Susan L. Parris, Program Manager, Directorate for Social, Behavioral & Economic Sciences, Office of International Science and Engineering, 935 N, telephone: (703) 292-8711, fax: (703) 292-9067, email:

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

  • 47.074 --- Biological Sciences
  • 47.070 --- Computer and Information Science and Engineering
  • 47.076 --- Education and Human Resources
  • 47.041 --- Engineering
  • 47.050 --- Geosciences
  • 47.049 --- Mathematical and Physical Sciences
  • 47.078 --- Office of Polar Programs
  • 47.075 --- Social, Behavioral and Economic Sciences

Eligibility Information

  • Organization Limit:

    Applications are submitted directly by the individual researcher, unlike  standard NSF proposals which are submitted through the researcher's U.S. institution organizational representative.  In the IRFP FastLane application process (Section V., D.), the applicant acts as the Authorized Organizational Representative (AOR). 

    If a successful applicant wishes to have his/her award administered by his/her U.S. institution, this modification can be done at the time of award.  NOTE:  No indirect costs are allowed.

  • PI Eligibility Limit: Applicants must: 1. be U.S. citizens or permanent residents as of the second Tuesday in October annually. 2. have been awarded a doctoral degree within three years of the application date or expect to receive the doctoral degree by the award date.  If an applicant is recommended for an award, an award may be made before the Ph.D. is bestowed, but the applicant must provide proof of the degree before any funds are released. 3. desire to conduct scientific research at appropriate academic, government or non-profit research institutions, located outside of the United States. 4.  Applicants who are permanent residents of the U.S. may not request a host site in their native country.
  • Limit on Number of Proposals: 1. Recipients of previous International Research Fellowship Awards are not eligible. Applicants may submit only one fellowship application each year.

Award Information

  • Anticipated Type of Award: Fellowship
  • Estimated Number of Awards: 30 to 35 - Approximately 30-35 fellowships will be offered each year to U.S. investigators for research abroad.
  • Anticipated Funding Amount: $3,500,000 Total program support will be approximately $3.5 million in each fiscal year, contingent upon the quality of applications and availability of funds.

Proposal Preparation and Submission Instructions

A. Proposal Preparation Instructions
  • Full Proposal Preparation Instructions: This solicitation contains information that deviates from the standard Grant Proposal Guide (GPG) proposal preparation guidelines. Please see the full text of this solicitation for further information.
B. Budgetary Information
  • Cost Sharing Requirements: Cost Sharing is not required.
  • Indirect Cost (F&A) Limitations: There are no indirect costs allowed.
  • Other Budgetary Limitations: Other budgetary limitations apply. Please see the full text of this solicitation for further information.
C. Due Dates
  • Full Proposal Deadline Date(s) (due by 5 p.m. proposer's local time):
    • Second Tuesday in October

Proposal Review Information

  • Merit Review Criteria: National Science Board approved criteria. Additional merit review considerations apply. Please see the full text of this solicitation for further information.

Award Administration Information

  • Award Conditions: Standard NSF award conditions apply.
  • Reporting Requirements: Standard NSF reporting requirements apply.


Summary of Program Requirements

  1. Introduction

  2. Program Description

  3. Eligibility Information

  4. Award Information

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

  6. Proposal Review Information
    1. NSF Proposal Review Process
    2. Review Protocol and Associated Customer Service Standard

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

  8. Contacts for Additional Information

  9. Other Programs of Interest


The objective of the International Research Fellowship Program (IRFP) is to introduce scientists and engineers in the early stages of their careers to research opportunities abroad, thereby furthering NSF's goal of creating a diverse, competitive, and globally-engaged U.S. workforce of scientists, engineers, technologists, and well-prepared citizens.


These awards are available in any field of science and engineering research or education supported by NSF. Applicants are encouraged to consider any site that will provide a unique and beneficial research experience.

Appropriate organizations include institutions of higher education, industrial research institutions/laboratories, government research institutes/laboratories/centers, nonprofit research organizations, and foreign sites or centers of excellence.

Eligible applicants, in addition to being citizens or permanent residents of the United States, must have earned a doctoral degree within three years of the date of application, or expect to receive the doctoral degree by the start of the project.  Women, minorities, and persons with disabilities are strongly encouraged to apply.

Support may be requested for residence abroad for nine to 24 consecutive months.   The 24-month period may include up to one year (or some portion of the total duration) at the foreign site and one year (or duration equal to the foreign tenure) as a "re-entry" component in the United States.  This period must be specified in the proposal at the time of application, so that it may be reviewed along with the foreign tenure.

Awardees are expected to work full time on their research projects. Support is not provided for teaching, writing textbooks, preparation of prior research results for publication, or similar activities.

Bioscience research with disease-related goals, including work on the etiology, diagnosis, or treatment of physical or mental diseases, abnormality, or malfunction in human beings or animals is normally not supported, since these fields are outside NSF focus. Animal models of such conditions, or the development or testing of drugs or other procedures for their treatment also generally are not eligible for support. However, research in bioengineering with diagnosis or treatment-related goals, that applies engineering principles to problems in biology and medicine while advancing engineering knowledge is eligible for support. Bioengineering research to aid persons with disabilities is also eligible. 


Applicants must: 1. be U.S. citizens or permanent residents as of the second Tuesday in October annually. 2. have been awarded a doctoral degree within three years of the application date or expect to receive the doctoral degree by the award date. 3. desire to conduct scientific research at appropriate academic, government or non-profit research institutions, located outside of the United States.

Limitations on the number of applications that may be submitted by an individual: Recipients of previous International Research Fellowship awards are not eligible.  Each applicant may submit only one application per competition.

Host Site Eligibility: Appropriate host sites are foreign science or engineering centers in all geographical regions.  Appropriate establishments include institutions of higher education, industrial research institutions/laboratories, government research institutes/laboratories/centers, and non-profit research organizations. (For those interested in research in Japan, contact Susan Parris for specific instructions.)  Competition is very strong for applicants who want to travel to Western Europe and, in general, to the more developed countries.  All proposals are ranked based on scientific merit.  However, given two equally ranked proposals, priority will be given to the proposal with research in an underrepresented country.  In addition, the program may limit the number of awards for specific countries in the interest of widening the geographical scope of the program.  A U.S.-affiliated institution outside of the U.S., for example the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (STRI) in Panama, would be an acceptable host site, but with equal reviews and ranking, would be considered lower priority than a fellowship to be done at a non-U.S. affiliated institution. 

Applicants who are permanent residents of the U.S. may not select a host site in their native country.


Tenure Limitations

A Fellow will have a full-time tenure of from nine to 24 consecutive months. Requests to divide tenure between multiple institutions should be clearly described in the application.

A recipient of a fellowship is encouraged to begin tenure within the award year.  Any exceptions, such as a delay in completion of the Ph.D., will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

NOTE:  Any requests for a re-entry component must be made within the original application.  A re-entry host and project must be included.  That component is reviewed along with the foreign component. A request for a re-entry component to write up results back in the U.S. is not appropriate. 



A. Proposal Preparation Instructions

Full Proposal Instructions:

Proposals submitted in response to this program announcement/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: Paper copies of the GPG may be obtained from the NSF Publications Clearinghouse, telephone (703) 292-7827 or by e-mail from

All page limits indicated within this program announcement include pictures, figures, graphics, tables, etc.  Applicants are urged to take special care to adhere to page limitations, font size (no smaller than Courier New 10), and margins (minimum of 2.5 cm).  Proposals that do not conform to the requirements will be returned without review.  In cases where requirements given in this program announcement differ from those given in the Grant Proposal Guide, this announcement takes precedent.

International Research Fellowship Program (IRFP) Application  must be submitted electronically using Proposal Preparation on the NSF FastLane website. Follow specific instructions found by selecting Postdoctoral Fellowships on the FastLane website. Select 'Applicant' from Who Are You? choices. 

The International Research Fellowship Program (IRFP) application consists of:

  • Cover Page - You must complete the cover page first. Check that your name and address show as both Awardee and Performing Organization. Select this program announcement from the list shown.                   
  •  Application Form - Basic information                    
  •  Application Form B - Language skills (foreign languages only), dependent information, international experience (research experience of one year or more), requested amount of funds for this project (See allowable expenses section V.B. below.)  
  • Project Summary/Abstract (450 words or less)- Include your name, project title, host(s) name and institution, description of dissertation research,  description of the proposed research project, your objective, technical approach and expected results. Tell why you want to go to a particular site and why you want to work with your host. Use terms understandable to a lay person. Do not use jargon. 
  • Detailed Project Description (not to exceed five single-spaced pages) If necessary, an additional 2-3 pages may be used for forms, graphs and references cited, to be submitted as Supplementary Documents.

The Project Description must contain the following seven items:

  1. Detailed project description - You must include any request for a re-entry component within the five-page limit.                              
  2. Detailed justification for conducting the research abroad                              
  3. Identification of the collaborating hosts                                         
  4. Clear relationship between your proposed research and the current research efforts at the host institution                                          
  5. Description of facilities and any other evidence of the suitablility of the foreign collaborator(s) and site.                                          
  6. Explanation of your long-term career goals and the role of this postdoctoral experience in achieving them, including future plans for collaborative activities.                                          
  7. Broader impacts - See Section VI.A., for complete description of broader impacts. 
  • Applicant's Biographical Sketch and list of publications with full title and completed references. Do not send reprints or abstracts.         
  • Host Scientist's Invitation/Sponsoring Scientist Statement - Applicant uses the Supplementary Docs section in FastLane to upload this letter and curriculum vitae (CV) from host. 

The Letter of invitation is from the prospective host scientist(s) or engineer(s) both for the foreign tenure and any re-entry component.  The letter must describe the proposed interaction between the applicant's research plan and ongoing research efforts at the foreign site.  The host's CV in English (strictly limited to two pages) must be attached following the letter.  The host should be the person who will actually collaborate with the applicant. 

  • NSF Budget data - You will not see a budget form, but must provide the Requested Amount to carry out this project.  That figure must be saved on Form B.

(In addition, under Supplementary Docs, add one additional page for an actual budget breakdown.  List each budget item per Allowable Expenses in Section B below.  (For example - airfare = $2,000, dependent allowance - 3 X $150 X 12 months = $5,400, etc.) Be as specific as possible for elements such as materials and equipment.  Reviewers must see that you will have what you need to accomplish what you propose.  For any items where justification is needed (materials, in-country travel, etc.) write one or two sentences.(See section on Budgetary Information below.)

Note: If recommended for an award, you will work out a detailed, final budget after discussion with NSF, based on funds available and per diem rates in effect at that time.   

  • Two letters of reference (this includes the rating form in the on-line reference module) - from two senior research colleagues familiar with your research work. Do not secure references from proposed foreign hosts or host institutions. One reference must be from your Ph.D advisor. You will list names of Letter of Reference writers within "Add/Delete Letter of Reference Writers" section in FastLane Proposal Preparation. This must be done before your references can write their letters.               
  • Supplementary Docs - Multiple supplementary docs are allowed and expected, including timeline of project, Host Scientist's letter of invitation, host's CV, detailed budget breakdown and any item justifications, plus any graphics, forms, references cited beyond 5 page project description page limit. 

Proposers are reminded to identify the program announcement/solicitation number (02-149) in the program announcement/solicitation block on the proposal Cover Sheet. Compliance with this requirement is critical to determining the relevant proposal processing guidelines. Failure to submit this information may delay processing.

B. Budgetary Information

Cost Sharing:

Cost sharing is not required in proposals submitted under this Program Solicitation.

Indirect Cost (F&A) Limitations:

There are no indirect costs allowed.

Other Budgetary Limitations:

Allowable Expenses for IRFP

  • Round trip economy airfare and necessary ground transportation from the awardee's permanent residence or the place where the application was made to the host institution. Travel must be performed on a U.S. flag carrier if such service is available (see para. 761.2 and 761.3 of the Grant Policy Manual at     
  • Up to $300 of excess baggage allowance (per award, per person)     
  • In-country travel. Travel between countries and within the host country may be included if justified in the proposal     
  • $2,500 a year relocation allowance     
  • Living allowance of $500 to $4,500 per month to be determined at  time of award on basis of U.S. Government per diem rates for host locality. Per diem rates can be viewed at The first 30 days are calculated at the full per diem rate.  The rate is reduced to 50% for all days thereafter.  (Calculate as follows:  Per diem rate multiplied by 30 days, divided by 2, times number of remaining months, plus first month figure, divided by total tenure months.  Example: 12 months in Paris at per diem rate of $100 would be figured:  $100 X 30 days = $3,000 (first month rate) divided by 2 = $1,500 X 11 months = $16,500 plus $3,000 (first month rate) = $19,500 divided by 12 months (total duration) = a monthly stipend of $1,625.)  For any re-entry component, $3,500 per month will be provided for living allowance, regardless of location.      
  • Health insurance allowance costs at a fixed rate of $150 per month     
  • Support for materials, supplies and equipment, if justified by proposal      
  • Partial support for language training, if justified, with the amount determined on a case-by-case basis     
  • Up to $3,000 per award for a return professional visit(s). May be used for presentation of results at conferences, consultation with colleagues, job interviews, or attendance at professional conferences     
  • Round trip economy airfare, health insurance at a fixed rate of $50 per month, and a supplementary living allowance of $150 per month for each dependent accompanying the awardee for six months or more.      
  • Institutional allowance - up to 10 percent of award amount may be requested for expenses incurred by host institution.  Expenses must be documented at time of award. 

NOTE:  NSF funds no indirect costs for these fellowships.     

  • Field expenses, if justified by the proposal.

C. Due Dates

Proposals must be submitted by the following date(s):

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

    Second Tuesday in October

D. FastLane Requirements

Proposers are required to prepare and submit all proposals for this announcement/solicitation through the FastLane system. Detailed instructions for proposal preparation and submission via FastLane are available at: For FastLane user support, call the FastLane Help Desk at 1-800-673-6188 or e-mail The FastLane Help Desk answers general technical questions related to the use of the FastLane system. Specific questions related to this program announcement/solicitation should be referred to the NSF program staff contact(s) listed in Section VIII of this announcement/solicitation.

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. Proposers are no longer required to provide a paper copy of the signed Proposal Cover Sheet to NSF. Further instructions regarding this process are available on the FastLane Website at:


A. NSF Proposal Review Process

Reviews of proposals submitted to NSF are solicited from peers with expertise in the substantive area of the proposed research or education project. These reviewers are selected by Program Officers charged with the oversight of the review process. NSF invites the proposer to suggest, at the time of submission, the names of appropriate or inappropriate reviewers. Care is taken to ensure that reviewers have no conflicts with the proposer. Special efforts are made to recruit reviewers from non-academic institutions, minority-serving institutions, or adjacent disciplines to that principally addressed in the proposal.

The National Science Board approved revised criteria for evaluating proposals at its meeting on March 28, 1997 (NSB 97-72). All NSF proposals are evaluated through use of the two merit review criteria. In some instances, however, NSF will employ additional criteria as required to highlight the specific objectives of certain programs and activities.

On July 8, 2002, the NSF Director issued Important Notice 127, Implementation of new Grant Proposal Guide Requirements Related to the Broader Impacts Criterion. This Important Notice reinforces the importance of addressing both criteria in the preparation and review of all proposals submitted to NSF. NSF continues to strengthen its internal processes to ensure that both of the merit review criteria are addressed when making funding decisions.

In an effort to increase compliance with these requirements, the January 2002 issuance of the GPG incorporated revised proposal preparation guidelines relating to the development of the Project Summary and Project Description. Chapter II of the GPG specifies that Principal Investigators (PIs) must address both merit review criteria in separate statements within the one-page Project Summary. This chapter also reiterates that broader impacts resulting from the proposed project must be addressed in the Project Description and described as an integral part of the narrative.

Effective October 1, 2002, NSF will return without review proposals that do not separately address both merit review criteria within the Project Summary. It is believed that these changes to NSF proposal preparation and processing guidelines will more clearly articulate the importance of broader impacts to NSF-funded projects.

The two National Science Board approved merit review criteria are listed below (see the Grant Proposal Guide Chapter III.A for further information). 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 he/she is qualified to make judgments.

    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 and original 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?

NSF staff 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.
    Additional Review Criteria:

    IN ADDITION TO THE REVIEW CRITERIA ABOVE, for this program, the reviewers are asked to consider the following International Science and Engineering criteria:

    Prospective benefits to the applicant, the scientific discipline and the United States

    Qualifications of proposed host and host institution and complementarity

    Qualifications of applicant, including applicant's potential for continued growth

    Merit of the proposed international collaboration

    Expected mutual benefit to be derived from the contribution of the scientists and engineers in each country. 

    Applicants are evaluated on their ability, accomplishments, and potential as evidenced by the biographical sketch and reference letters.  The research is evaluated on its scientific merit, its feasibility, its significance in generating new knowledge, and its impact on the career development of the applicant.  Other important evaluative factors are the suitability and availability of the host scientist(s) and host institution(s), including colleagues and facilities.

    Past reviewers have been most influenced by strong publication records, enthusiastic letters of reference, and clear, well written, hypothesis-driven proposals.  Detailed and enthusiastic host invitation letters are viewed positively.  Since this is a multidisciplinary program, proposals will be read by reviewers from all fields represented by the competition.  Your proposal should be clearly written and understandable for both those within your field and those outside it.  A non-expert should be able to read your project description, understand what you are proposing to do, and to see its value.  However, do not underestimate reviewers.  They will fault an applicant who does not show familiarity with current literature in their field.

    Since this program includes all countries and fields supported by NSF, besides technical merit, the program must consider geographic and field distribution.  In addition, the program intends to support fellowships for those who will most benefit at this stage of their career.  For applicants already at the foreign site, a strong case must be made to convince reviewers of the merit in remaining at the site.  Where reviews and ranking are equal, those with no international experience will take precedence.  

B. Review Protocol and Associated Customer Service Standard

All proposals are carefully reviewed by at least three other persons outside NSF who are experts in the particular field represented by the proposal. Proposals submitted in response to this announcement/solicitation will be reviewed by Ad Hoc 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.

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 Director. In addition, the proposer will receive an explanation of the decision to award or decline funding.

NSF is striving to be able to tell proposers whether their proposals have been declined or recommended for funding within six months. The time interval begins on the closing date of an announcement/solicitation, or the date of proposal receipt, whichever is later. The interval ends when the Division Director accepts the Program Officer's recommendation.

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.


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 Division 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.A. 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 (NSF-GC-1); * or Federal Demonstration Partnership (FDP) Terms and Conditions * and (5) any announcement or other NSF issuance that may be incorporated by reference in the award letter. Cooperative agreement awards also are administered in accordance with NSF Cooperative Agreement Terms and Conditions (CA-1). Electronic mail notification is the preferred way to transmit NSF awards to organizations that have electronic mail capabilities and have requested such notification from the Division of Grants and Agreements.

*These documents may be accessed electronically on NSF's Website at Paper copies may be obtained from the NSF Publications Clearinghouse, telephone (703) 292-7827 or by e-mail from

More comprehensive information on NSF Award Conditions is contained in the NSF Grant Policy Manual (GPM) Chapter II, available electronically on the NSF Website at The GPM is also for sale through the Superintendent of Documents, Government Printing Office (GPO), Washington, DC 20402. The telephone number at GPO for subscription information is (202) 512-1800. The GPM may be ordered through the GPO Website at

C. Reporting Requirements

For all multi-year grants (including both standard and continuing grants), the PI must submit an annual project report to the cognizant Program Officer at least 90 days before the end of the current budget period.

Within 90 days after the expiration of an award, the PI also is required to submit a final project report. Failure to provide final technical reports delays NSF review and processing of pending proposals for the PI and all Co-PIs. 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. This system permits electronic submission and updating of project reports, including information on project participants (individual and organizational), activities and findings, 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.


General inquiries regarding this program should be made to:

  • Susan L. Parris, Program Manager, Directorate for Social, Behavioral & Economic Sciences, Office of International Science and Engineering, 935 N, telephone: (703) 292-8711, fax: (703) 292-9067, email:

For questions related to the use of FastLane, contact:


The NSF Guide to Programs is a compilation of funding for research and education in science, mathematics, and engineering. The NSF Guide to Programs is available electronically at General descriptions of NSF programs, research areas, and eligibility information for proposal submission are provided in each chapter.

Many NSF programs offer announcements or solicitations concerning specific proposal requirements. To obtain additional information about these requirements, contact the appropriate NSF program offices. Any changes in NSF's fiscal year programs occurring after press time for the Guide to Programs will be announced in the NSF E-Bulletin, which is updated daily on the NSF Website at, and in individual program announcements/solicitations. Subscribers can also sign up for NSF's Custom News Service ( to be notified of new funding opportunities that become available.


The National Science Foundation (NSF) funds research and education in most fields of science and engineering. Awardees are wholly responsible for conducting their project activities and preparing the results for publication. Thus, the Foundation does not assume responsibility for such findings or their interpretation.

NSF welcomes proposals from all qualified scientists, engineers and educators. The Foundation strongly encourages women, minorities and persons with disabilities to compete fully in its programs. In accordance with Federal statutes, regulations and NSF policies, no person on grounds of race, color, age, sex, national origin or disability shall be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving financial assistance from NSF, although some programs may have special requirements that limit eligibility.

Facilitation Awards for Scientists and Engineers with Disabilities (FASED) provide funding for special assistance or equipment to enable persons with disabilities (investigators and other staff, including student research assistants) to work on NSF-supported projects. See the GPG Chapter II, Section D.2 for instructions regarding preparation of these types of proposals.


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

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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; 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 applicant 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 needing information as part of the review process or in order to coordinate programs; 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," 63 Federal Register 267 (January 5, 1998), and NSF-51, "Reviewer/Proposal File and Associated Records," 63 Federal Register 268 (January 5, 1998). 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 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 this burden estimate and any other aspect of this collection of information, including suggestions for reducing this burden, to: Suzanne Plimpton, Reports Clearance Officer, Division of Administrative Services, National Science Foundation, Arlington, VA 22230.

OMB control number: 3145-0058.


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