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Questions and Answers Regarding the Cyber Trust Solicitation (NSF 04-524)

  1. Question: I have several ideas I think might be suitable for funding under Cyber Trust, and several potential collaborators have contacted me. Is there any limit on the number of proposals I can submit to the Cyber Trust solicitation?

    Answer: Yes. You may appear as PI, co-PI, or senior personnel on at most TWO proposals submitted to the Cyber Trust solicitation.

  1. Question: I had intended to submit a proposal to the Trusted Computing (or Data and Application Security) program this year. Can I submit to Cyber Trust instead?

    Answer: Yes. Trusted Computing and Data and Application Security are not accepting submissions this year, but the topics covered in Trusted Computing and Data and Application Security are within the scope of the broader Cyber Trust program. It would be wise to read the Cyber Trust announcement, however, and consider revisions to your proposal before submitting it.

  1. Question: I want to work with one other PI. Can we propose a "Single Investigator" grant?

    Yes. Please note revisions to the solicitation--these are now "Single Investigator or Small Group" awards.

  1. Question: Is a team proposal required to include participants from different institutions?

    There is no requirement that teams include members from different institutions.

  1. Question: Can a for-profit organization participate in a proposal?

    Yes, if the participation meets the guidelines specified in the NSF Grant Proposal Guide (see GPG Chapter I.C.3 https://www.nsf.gov/pubs/2004/nsf042/1.htm#IC )

  1. Question: Can a foreign institution participate in a proposal?

    Yes, under conditions specified in the NSF Grant Proposal Guide(see GPG Chapter I.C.6 https://www.nsf.gov/pubs/2004/nsf042/1.htm#IC ).

  1. Question: I have a question about details of the 20% cost sharing required in proposals for center-scale activities. Who can answer questions on cost sharing?

    Questions about cost sharing in general should be submitted by email to policy@nsf.gov. Questions about the calculation of cost sharing for this program solicitation should be submitted to the cognizant NSF program officer listed in the program solicitation.
    The following example shows how the amount of cost sharing is calculated if the total project cost is $1,200,000. The proposal should request $1,000,000 from NSF, and, if NSF agrees to fund the project at that level, then the proposer must provide 20% of that amount, which is $200,000. The amount of $1,000,000 should be entered on Line J of the proposal budget, and the amount of $200,000 should be entered on Line M of the proposal budget. The total project cost of $1,200,0000 is not entered on the proposal budget, but must be described in the proposal and justified in the budget justification.

  1. Question: I've noticed that the FY04 ITR solicitation (NSF 04-012) seeks research on "National Priority Areas", including National and Homeland Security, which includes aspects of critical infrastructure protection. The areas of interest in the Cyber Trust solicitation (NSF 04-524) seem to overlap somewhat with this priority area. Can you help me decide which competition is the appropriate one for my proposal? Which competition is likely to have a higher success rate?

    There are indeed some common interests in the two programs, and both encourage multidisciplinary proposals. In general, disciplinary work that seeks primarily to advance resistance of computer-based systems to malicious acts should be submitted to Cyber Trust, as should multi-disciplinary work that seeks to understand/model how economic, legal, social, human-interface, affects the adoption of technology that specifically aims to improve component or system performance in the face of malicious attacks. Work in which the concern with preventing, tolerating, or recovering from malicious acts is a relatively minor focus and work that focuses primarily on advancing the dependability of critical infrastructures (including computer, communications, and control infrastructures) in general, without specific focus on malicious acts, would more appropriately be submitted to the ITR competition. ITR is also encouraging research that seeks to understand and recover from threats to national security, such as collaborative knowledge environments for the management of dynamic information, disease informatics, and search-and-rescue robots.
    As always, NSF will strive to obtain appropriate and fair reviews for all proposals, regardless of the competition to which they are submitted. Although the number of awards may be roughly predicted for both competitions based on available budgets, the success ratios will depend heavily on the number of proposals received, which is difficult for NSF to foresee.

  1. Question: Are proposals focused specifically on education and workforce development within scope for Cyber Trust?

    As the solicitation indicates, each proposal must specifically describe its education and workforce development contributions. However, proposals that focus solely on education and workforce development (e.g., a proposal for curriculum development and establishing a teaching laboratory, without a significant research component) should be submitted to other more appropriate NSF solicitations, such as CRCD/EI (NSF 04-001), ITWF (NSF 03-609), SFS (NSF 04-505), and ATE (NSF 03-523).

  1. Question: I notice that the awards made under this solicitation are subject to the stipulations of P.L. 107-305, the Cyber Security Research and Development Act. How does this restrict the nationality of the graduate students and faculty who may participate?

    Section 16 of P.L. 107-305 limits grant eligibility (for example, no grant or fellowship may be awarded "to any alien from a country that is a state sponsor of international terrorism, as defined under section 306(b) of the Enhanced Border Security and VISA Entry Reform Act (8 U.S.C. 1735(b))". In addition, awards cannot be made to an institution that "has materially failed to comply with the recordkeeping and reporting requirements to receive nonimmigrant students or exchange visitor program participants" under specified sections of immigration laws.
    Full text of the law is available from the Library of Congress's Thomas web server:
    http://thomas.loc.gov/ select "Bill Text", then Select Congress "107", then enter "HR 3394" (without quotes) into the Bill Number search box and click "Search". Six links should be returned; click on the last one (should be:[H.R.3394.ENR]). See Section 16.