Findable Accessible Interoperable Reusable Open Science Research Coordination Networks (FAIROS RCN)

Funding Agency:
National Science Foundation

The FAIROS RCN program seeks to create three-year Research Coordination Networks (RCNs) which will foster catalytic improvements in scientific communities focusing on the FAIR (Findability, Accessibility, Interoperability, and Reuse, see Program Description for more information) guiding principles and Open Science best practices (inclusively summarized by the combined phrase FAIROS for purposes of this program). This program will support a broad range of activities by these new RCNs to advance the means by which investigators can share information and ideas, coordinate ongoing or planned research activities, foster synthesis and new collaborations, develop community standards, and in other ways advance science and education through communication and sharing of research products through FAIROS strategies.

FAIROS RCN proposals must select one of two tracks to focus on, either: 1) Disciplinary Improvements to targeted scientific communities, or 2) Cross-Cutting Improvements that apply to many or most scientific disciplines. In the case of proposals focused on Disciplinary Improvements, it is strongly recommended that prospective PIs contact a program officer from the list of Cognizant Program Officers in the directorate closest to the major disciplinary impact of the proposed work to ascertain that the scientific focus and budget of the proposed work are appropriate for this solicitation. In the case of proposals focused on Cross-Cutting Improvements, it is strongly recommended that prospective PIs contact a program officer from the list of Cognizant Program Officers from the Office of Advanced Cyberinfrastructure.  For more on the NSF Public Access Initiative and Office of Integrative Activities, see the Program Description section below.

This program is undertaken in support of the NSF Public Access Initiative as described in the 2015 NSF Public Access Plan entitled "Today's Data, Tomorrow's Discoveries", an agency-wide response to the need for publicly funded research products to be made publicly accessible. This national priority was first broadly articulated by the Office of Science and Technology Policy in 2013, and is of ongoing importance to NSF as a whole.  In addition, this program advances the priorities of NSF’s Office of Integrative Activities, which supports work across disciplinary boundaries that: advances research excellence and innovation; develops human and infrastructure capacity critical to the U.S. science and engineering enterprise; and promotes engagement of scientists and engineers at all career stages.

Full Proposal Deadline: April 12, 2022

Agency Website

Eligibility Requirements

Proposals may only be submitted by the following:

  • Institutions of Higher Education (IHEs) - Two- and four-year IHEs (including community colleges) accredited in, and having a campus located in the US, acting on behalf of their faculty members. Special Instructions for International Branch Campuses of US IHEs: If the proposal includes funding to be provided to an international branch campus of a US institution of higher education (including through use of subawards and consultant arrangements), the proposer must explain the benefit(s) to the project of performance at the international branch campus, and justify why the project activities cannot be performed at the US campus.
  • Non-profit, non-academic organizations: Independent museums, observatories, research labs, professional societies and similar organizations in the U.S. associated with educational or research activities.
  • NSF-funded Federally Funded Research and Development Centers (FFRDCs) should contact the appropriate program before preparing a proposal for submission

An individual may participate as Principal Investigator, co-Principal Investigator or other Senior Personnel in at most one FAIROS RCN proposal.  Any individual whose biographical sketch is provided as part of the proposal will be considered as Senior Personnel in the proposed activity, with or without financial support from the project. The first submitted proposal (chronological order of submission) in which that individual is participating will be accepted for review, and the remainder will be returned without review. For this purpose, a multi-institution collaborative project is treated as one proposal that is considered submitted when the last component proposal is submitted. Similarly, a person who appears as a PI or Co-PI on one FAIROS RCN proposal may only appear on other FAIROS proposals submitted in response to this solicitation in a non-funded capacity or as a signatory to a letter of collaboration.  The reason for the PI limit on FAIROS RCN proposals is to balance the number and quality of the submissions. 

Amount Description

Estimated Number of Awards: 6 to 7

An expected 6-7 awards of up to $500K per year for three years are planned.  However, the number of awards will be based on quality of proposals, availability of funds, and responsiveness to priorities of the participating directorates/divisions.

Anticipated Funding Amount: $9,000,000 to $10,500,000

Estimated program budget, number of awards, and average award size/duration are subject to the availability of funds.  Each award will be up to $500K per year for three years.  

Funding Type

Grant

Eligibility

Faculty

Category

Engineering and Physical Sciences
Environmental & Life Sciences
Interdisciplinary
Social Sciences

External Deadline

April 12, 2022