NSF EPSCoR RII Track-2 Focused EPSCoR Collaborations (FEC) - Internal Competition

Solicitation of UM Pre-Proposals for Limited Submission Opportunity
NSF EPSCoR RII Track-2 Focused EPSCoR Collaborations (FEC)

Funding Opportunity for Research in Genomes to Phenomes

Program Solicitation: NSF 17-503: https://www.nsf.gov/funding/pgm_summ.jsp?pims_id=505263

Institutional Limitations: NSF EPSCoR Track-2 grants fund research collaborations among two or more EPSCoR RII eligible jurisdictions (Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas,

Delaware, Guam, Hawaii, Idaho, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Vermont, US Virgin Islands, West Virginia, and Wyoming.).  A collaborative proposal that includes researchers/institutions within at least two (or more) of these states will be required.  UM (Oxford) can submit only one proposal. UM (Jackson) can also submit one proposal. This announcement applies to UM (Oxford) only.

PI Limitations: An individual can serve as a PI or co-PI on no more than one proposal to this solicitation (but may participate in multiple internal pre-proposals). Individuals who are serving as PIs or co-PIs on a current EPSCoR award (any track) with an end date later than 10/31/2017 are not eligible to serve as a PI or co-PI on a submission to this solicitation. Each proposal will have one PI, and must identify at least one co-PI from another EPSCoR jurisdiction/state, and ideally should include at least one co-PI from another MRC institution (Jackson State, Mississippi State, or Southern Mississippi).

Limited Submission Selection Process: To determine which (if any) proposal will be developed for UM (Oxford)’s sole submission to NSF, a two-stage selection process will be conducted. For Stage 1, individuals or teams proposing to lead a collaboration project must submit a non-binding 2-page internal Notice of Intent to ORSP. If more than one Notice of Intent is received, those assessed to have reasonable potential will be invited to submit a longer (up to 10 pages) Stage 2 internal Pre-Proposal to ORSP. If multiple Stage 2 Pre-Proposals are received, ORSP will coordinate the selection of the winning pre-proposal, which the proposing PI/team will be invited to develop as a full proposal for submission to NSF. If at either Stage (1 or 2) only one viable submission is received by ORSP, the submitting PI will be invited to develop the full proposal on behalf of the institution. Both the Stage 1 Notice of Intent, and the Stage 2 Pre-Proposal, should be submitted to ORSP via the Ole Miss InfoReady Review portal at https://olemiss.infoready4.com, by the due dates given below.

Budget: The maximum budget request allowed per four-year project/proposal is:

  • up to $1.0M/year for collaborations involving two RII-eligible jurisdictions, or up to $4M total over four years; OR
  • up to $1.5M/year for collaborations involving 3 or more eligible jurisdictions, or up to $6M total over four years.

Committed cost sharing is prohibited. Full F&A is in effect.

Key Dates

10/11/2016     NSF solicitation released
11/3/2016       First UM announcement
11/15/2016     This UM announcement with Internal Competition Instructions
11/30/2016     Stage 1 Internal Notices of Intent due to ORSP
12/15/2016     Stage 2 Internal Pre-Proposals due to ORSP
12/20/2016     ORSP announces which UM Pre-Proposal to move forward
12/21/2016     Last full day before Christmas/Winter Break
1/3/2017         University reopens
1/5/2017         Required Letter of Intent (LOI) due to ORSP for review
1/10/2017       Required LOI due to NSF (based on old PAPPG 16-1[1]); must be submitted by the Authorized Organizational Representative
1/30/2017       NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG) NSF 17-1 goes into effect.[2]
2/6/2017         Full proposal & Transmittal due to ORSP for review
2/10/2017       Full proposal due to NSF (based on PAPPG 17-1)

Instructions for UM Internal Stage 1 (Notice of Intent)

Stage 1 Notices of Intent (NOI) should be no more than 2 pages long, and should consist of a Project Summary and a list of Prospective Collaborators. The Stage 1 NOI is required, but not binding. That is, to move to the Stage 2 competition, a viable Stage-1 NOI must be submitted; however, the Stage-1 NOI does not commit the PI to submit a Stage-2 Pre-Proposal, and the team/approach can be shuffled between Stages 1 and 2.

Project Summary: 1-page NSF-style Project Summary, including working title.

(1)    Prospective Collaborators: 1-page max list of institutions and individuals that a UM PI/team is considering collaborating with, including at least one institution/co-PI from another EPSCoR jurisdiction (NSF requirement), and at least one co-PI from another MRC institution (Mississippi Research Consortium recommendation). It is not necessarily expected that those proposed collaborators would have confirmed their intention to collaborate on a proposal at this stage, but please provide some idea of the state of discussions, what is decided, what is being considered, what hasn’t been decided, etc. No signatures are required at this point.

Instructions for UM Internal Stage 2 (Pre-Proposal)

Stage 2 Pre-Proposals should be no more than 10 pages, in 11 or 12 point Times New Roman or Arial font, single-spaced with one-inch margins, and include the following sections, in order, with these names.

(2)    Project Summary: 1-page NSF-style Project Summary, including working title.

(3)    Confirmed Collaborators: 1-page max list of proposed collaborating institutions and individuals—the UM PI and up to four co-PIs, including at least one co-PI from another EPSCoR jurisdiction (NSF requirement), and at least one co-PI from another MRC institution (Mississippi Research Consortium recommendation). This page should summarize the specific role/contribution of each proposed collaborating investigator, and why each is critical to the project. Include the contact information and signatures of the proposed PI and each co-PI. 

(4)    Abbreviated Project Description: A short (3-5 pages) version of the Project Description, containing (very abbreviated versions of) all of the required components, including: Status and Overview; Results from Relevant Prior Support; Research, Collaboration, and Workforce Development; Inter-jurisdictional Collaborations and Partnerships; Workforce Development; Evaluation and Assessment Plan; & Sustainability Plan. Due to the limited space and time, it is not expected that any of these elements will be complete, but you should provide enough to convince internal reviewers that, if selected for UM’s institutional nomination, the ensuing full proposal will be complete and strong.

(5)    Anticipated Outcomes (1/2 to 1 page): what kinds of outcomes are anticipated through this collaboration that would not be possible by the investigators working separately, including:

a.    workforce development outcomes

b.    benefits to the jurisdictions, (especially Mississippi), the nation, world

c.     research capability improvements in the designated focus area

(6)    Early Career Development and Diversity Plan (1/2 to 1 page): specific plan for how the project will lead to the recruitment and development of diverse early-career faculty, and how the full diversity of the participating jurisdictions’ resources will be engaged

(7)    Sustainability Plan (1/2 to 1 page): the potential of this collaboration, if funded, to become self-sustaining with non-EPSCoR funding from federal, jurisdictional, or private sector sources.

RII Track-2 FEC 2017 proposals must be aligned with the following focus area:

Understanding the Relationship between the genome and phenome; per NSF, proposals that do not align with this focus area will be returned without review– “Our vast and ever-increasing storehouse of genomic data has enabled rapid progress in many fields allied with the biological sciences, but it remains a challenge to mechanistically understand how genotype elicits phenotype. A fuller understanding of the emergent processes underlying this relationship would have profound implications in medicine, agriculture, biotechnology, ecology, evolution, and other fields. Proposals should pursue innovative, interdisciplinary approaches toward quantitative, predictive understanding of the complex interactions between genome and environment that generate variable phenotypic traits. These efforts may include the work of biologists, physicists, chemists, engineers, informaticians, and other scientists. Proposals may use any combination of experimental, computational, and/or theoretical approaches with any appropriate model system(s).”