Sponsor Deadline
Posted: 10/25/2023

Dear Colleague Letter: ANR - NSF/MCB/PHY Lead Agency Opportunity at the Molecular and Cellular Biosciences - Physics Interface

October 23, 2023

Dear Colleague:

The U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) and the French Agence Nationale de la Recherche (ANR) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for Research Cooperation. The MOU provides an overarching framework to encourage collaboration between U.S. and French research communities and sets out the principles by which jointly supported activities might be developed. This Dear Colleague Letter announces a lead agency opportunity whereby collaborative proposals between U.S. and French researchers are submitted to only the lead agency for review, and the partner agency accepts that review. Based on the lead agency review of collaborative proposals, NSF and ANR will make funding decisions to support meritorious collaborative projects. The lead agency opportunity allows for reciprocal acceptance of merit review through standard proposal submission mechanisms with the goal of reducing some of the current barriers to international collaborations.

The NSF Division of Molecular and Cellular Biosciences in the Directorate for Biological Sciences (NSF/BIO/MCB), the NSF Division of Physics in the Directorate for Mathematical and Physical Sciences (NSF/MPS/PHY) and ANR are pleased to announce topical areas associated with the lead agency opportunity. In FY 2024 (October 2023-September 2024), NSF will serve as the lead agency for all proposals.

The lead agency opportunity allows U.S. and French researchers to submit a single proposal describing a project involving U.S. and French researchers that will undergo a single review process by the lead agency, on behalf of NSF/BIO/MCB, NSF/MPS/PHY and ANR.

Proposals must address topics that fall within the scope of science funded by each of the participating entities: ANR (Generic call for proposals, 2024 edition G), NSF/BIO/MCB and NSF/MPS/PHY. Proposers must provide a clear rationale for the need for a U.S.-France collaboration, including the unique expertise and synergy that the collaborating groups will bring to the project. Proposers should note that the lead agency opportunity does not represent a new source of funding. Proposals will be assessed in competition with all others submitted to the areas and agency programs identified in this DCL, and outcomes will be subject to both success in merit review and the availability of funds from NSF/BIO/MCB, NSF/MPS/PHY and ANR.

In FY 2024, proposals in response to this lead agency agreement should be submitted to NSF 23-615, Division of Physics: Investigator-Initiated Research Projects program solicitation in accordance with the proposal preparation and submission instructions contained in the solicitation and this DCL. The deadline for proposals is December 12, 2023. While proposals are submitted to NSF/MPS/PHY, they will be jointly reviewed by PHY and MCB.

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