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NSF 13-005

Dear Colleague Letter: Intent for NSF/SBE to Partner in Open Research Area for the Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences

This document has been archived.

DATE: October 11, 2012

National Science Foundation

Directorate for Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences
Division of Behavioral and Cognitive Sciences
Division of Social and Economic Sciences
National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics
SBE Office of Multidisciplinary Activities

This Dear Colleague Letter is to alert US social and behavioral science researchers that NSF's Directorate for Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences (SBE) intends to participate in the Open Research Area (ORA). ORA was started in 2009 by four European funding agencies: the Agence Nationale de la Recherche (ANR, France), Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, Germany), the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC, UK), and the Nederlandse Organisatie voor Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek (NWO, Netherlands) as a joint funding scheme for collaborative international research projects in the social, behavioral, and economic sciences. In 2013, after two successful rounds of competition, ORA is expanding to include the NSF's Directorate for Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences.

One of the chief objectives of ORA is to reduce barriers to international collaborative research by making collaboration among the partners as seamless as possible through a single review process and joint decision-making. This is an important goal as we become increasingly aware that some of the highest quality research can be delivered by working with the best scholars across national borders.

Proposals will be accepted for research projects in any area of the social and behavioral sciences involving researchers from any combination of three or more of the participating countries. Please note that bilateral applications will not be allowed. Further, proposals must clearly demonstrate the added value of transnational collaboration; proposals where there is no clear scientific value added from the collaboration will not be eligible.

Interested researchers are asked to contact the NSF/SBE program officer for ORA, Elizabeth Tran, by email ( to discuss the fit of their proposed research to ORA. The Call for Proposals is posted at

Sincerely, Myron P. Gutmann
Assistant Director, National Science Foundation
Directorate for Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences