Funding Agency:
U.S. – Israel Binational Science Foundation

The U.S. – Israel Binational Science Foundation (BSF) is accepting applications in joint funding programs in Foundational Research in Robotics, with the Computer and Information Science and Engineering (CISE); Engineering (ENG) Directorates of the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF).

The Foundational Research in Robotics (Robotics) program supports research on robotic systems that exhibit significant levels of both computational capability and physical complexity. For the purposes of this program, a robot is defined as intelligence embodied in an engineered construct, with the ability to process information, sense, and move within or substantially alter its working environment. Here intelligence includes a broad class of methods that enable a robot to solve problems or make contextually appropriate decisions. Research is welcomed that considers inextricably interwoven questions of intelligence, computation, and embodiment. Projects may also focus on a distinct aspect of intelligence, computation, or embodiment, as long as the proposed research is clearly justified in the context of a class of robots.

The focus of the Robotics program is on foundational advances in robotics. Robotics is a deeply interdisciplinary field, and proposals are encouraged that explore the full range of fundamental engineering and computer science research challenges arising in robotics. However, all proposals must convincingly explain how a successful outcome will enable transformative new robot functionality or substantially enhance existing robot functionality. The proposal should clearly articulate how the intellectual contribution of the proposed work addresses fundamental gaps in robotics. Meaningful experimental validation on a physical platform is strongly encouraged. Projects that do not represent a direct fundamental contribution to robotics should not be submitted to the Robotics program.

These programs have no deadlines and submission is welcome throughout the year. Please note that the Israeli PIs have to submit their proposals to the BSF within 7 days after the U.S. PIs submit to the NSF.

Agency Website

Eligibility Requirements

Applications must be written jointly by an Israeli and a U.S. scientist from a U.S. research institution.

The NSF accepts applications only from U.S. scientists. Submission to the NSF should be made by the U.S. PI alone, but he/she has to note in the cover page that it is an “NSF-BSF Application” (the Israeli does not appear as a formal co-PI on the application). In the U.S.-Israeli applications, the role of the Israeli partner(s) must be described. Furthermore, it should be clearly explained why the contribution of the Israeli PI to the research project is important/essential.

Amount Description

The size of the BSF grant to the Israeli is expected to be up to $80,000/year for experimental programs and up to $55,000/year for theoretical or computer based research, subject to the availability of funds. If more than a single Israeli group is involved in the research, the budget may be increased by up to 50%.

Funding Type





Engineering and Physical Sciences
International Opportunities