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Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program
In consideration of the challenges facing many in our country, NSF is extending the upcoming proposal deadline for the Faculty Early Career Development Program (CAREER) until 5:00 p.m. submitter's local time on Tuesday, August 11, 2020.
Please note that the eligibility requirements specified in the solicitation remain unchanged, and proposers must meet all of the eligibility requirements as of the original deadline of July 27, 2020. The Departmental Letter that must be submitted by the Department Chair (or equivalent) must use July 27, 2020 to determine eligibility, regardless of whether the CAREER proposal is submitted before, on, or after July 27, 2020. An untenured assistant professor on July 27, 2020 is eligible to submit a CAREER proposal even if the Principal Investigator is tenured/promoted in the fall. A new faculty member who starts on July 28, 2020 or later is not eligible to submit a CAREER proposal this year.
In order to ensure timely proposal review and decision making, NSF strongly encourages submission of CAREER proposals on or before the original deadline of July 27, 2020. NSF will not consider requests to extend the deadline date beyond 5:00 p.m., submitter’s local time on August 11, 2020, except as outlined in PAPPG Chapter I.F.3.
CAREER: The Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program is a Foundation-wide activity that offers the National Science Foundation's most prestigious awards in support of early-career faculty who have the potential to serve as academic role models in research and education and to lead advances in the mission of their department or organization. Activities pursued by early-career faculty should build a firm foundation for a lifetime of leadership in integrating education and research. NSF encourages submission of CAREER proposals from early-career faculty at all CAREER-eligible organizations and especially encourages women, members of underrepresented minority groups, and persons with disabilities to apply.
PECASE: Each year NSF selects nominees for the Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE) from among the most meritorious recent CAREER awardees. Selection for this award is based on two important criteria: 1) innovative research at the frontiers of science and technology that is relevant to the mission of NSF, and 2) community service demonstrated through scientific leadership, education, or community outreach. These awards foster innovative developments in science and technology, increase awareness of careers in science and engineering, give recognition to the scientific missions of the participating agencies, enhance connections between fundamental research and national goals, and highlight the importance of science and technology for the Nation’s future. Individuals cannot apply for PECASE. These awards are initiated by the participating federal agencies. At NSF, up to twenty nominees for this award are selected each year from among the PECASE-eligible CAREER awardees most likely to become the leaders of academic research and education in the twenty-first century. The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy makes the final selection and announcement of the awardees.
Full Proposal Deadline Date: Aug. 11, 2020 (was July 27, 2020); Fourth Monday in July, Annually Thereafter
A Principal Investigator (PI) may submit only one CAREER proposal per annual competition. In addition, a Principal Investigator may not participate in more than three CAREER competitions. Proposals that are not reviewed (i.e., are withdrawn before review or are returned without review) do not count toward the three-competition limit.
A. CAREER Program
Proposers must meet all of the following eligibility requirements at the time of submission:
- Hold a doctoral degree in a field supported by NSF;
- Be engaged in research in an area of science, engineering, or education supported by NSF;
- Hold at least a 50% tenure-track (or tenure-track-equivalent) position as an assistant professor (or equivalent title);
- Be untenured; and
- Have not previously received a CAREER award. (Prior or concurrent Federal support for other types of awards for non-duplicative research does not preclude eligibility.)
Tenure-Track Equivalency - For a position to be considered a tenure-track-equivalent position, it must meet all of the following requirements: (1) the employee has a continuing appointment that is expected to last the five years of a CAREER grant; (2) the appointment has substantial research and educational responsibilities; and (3) the proposed project relates to the employee's career goals and job responsibilities as well as to the mission of the department or organization. As stated in the Proposal Preparation Instructions, for non-tenure-track faculty, the Departmental Letter must affirm that the investigator's appointment is at an early-career level equivalent to pre-tenure status, and the Departmental Letter must clearly and convincingly demonstrate how the faculty member's appointment satisfies all the above requirements of tenure-track equivalency.
Faculty members who are Associate Professors or in equivalent appointments, with or without tenure, are not eligible for the CAREER program. Faculty members who hold Adjunct Faculty or equivalent appointments are not eligible for the CAREER program.
NO EXEMPTIONS FROM THESE ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA WILL BE GRANTED.
PECASE eligibility requires that the applicant be a U.S. citizen, U.S. national, or U.S. permanent resident by the time of nomination. Only recent CAREER awardees are considered as potential PECASE nominees by NSF. Although persons who have received PECASE awards through other agencies may be eligible for CAREER, they are not eligible to be nominated by NSF for another PECASE award.
The CAREER award, including indirect costs, is expected to total a minimum of $400,000 for the 5-year duration, with the following exceptions: Awards for proposals to the Directorate for Biological Sciences (BIO), the Directorate for Engineering (ENG), or the Office of Polar Programs (OPP) are expected to total a minimum of $500,000 for the 5-year duration. The PECASE award is an honorary award for all NSF recipients and does not provide additional funds. CAREER awards are eligible for supplemental funding as described in the NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG).