External Funding Advisor
January 2017 Newsletter
In this Issue:
  1. Director's Reminder- Revised NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide
  2. Featured Funding Opportunity- American Chemical Society's Grant Programs
  3. NIH Updates- Proposal Title Length and Font Guidelines
  4. NSF Updates- Identify Proposal Errors and Two New Types of Proposals
  5. Timely Topic- 21st Century Cures Act
  6. Compliance Corner- Revisions to the Common Rule and RCR Case Study Videos
Director's Reminder
NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (Effective Jan 30, 2017)

A revised version of the NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG), (NSF 17-1) has been issued. The PAPPG has been modified in its entirety, to remove all references to the Grant Proposal Guide (GPG) and Award & Administration Guide (AAG). The document will now be referred to solely as the NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide. 

Given the number of important revisions, the community is strongly encouraged to review the by-chapter summary of changes provided at the beginning of the PAPPG. 

The new PAPPG will be effective for proposals submitted, or due, on or after January 30, 2017. Note, while this version of the PAPPG becomes effective on January 30, 2017, in the interim, the guidelines contained in the current PAPPG (NSF 16-1) continue to apply. 
Featured Funding Opportunity 
American Chemical Society's Grant Programs: Research Grants for Non-Doctoral Departments 

ACS PRF research grant programs support fundamental research in the petroleum field, and development of the next generation of engineers and scientists through advanced scientific education. Research areas supported include chemistry, the earth sciences, chemical and petroleum engineering, and related fields such as polymers and materials science. Membership in the American Chemical Society is not a requirement or a factor in awarding ACS PRF grants.

Proposals Submission Window: 2/13/2017 - 3/17/2017 

To see the full details for the upcoming Research Grants for Non-Doctoral Departments funding opportunities click here

Please note the following limitations to applying for either the Undergraduate Research (UR) program and the Undergraduate New Investigator (UNI) Program: 
  • A principal investigator (lead PI or Co-PI) may have only one research proposal active or under consideration per meeting. 
  • Principal investigators (lead PI or Co-PI) may not hold more than one active PRF research grant at a time. 
  • Principal investigators (lead PI or Co-PI) with an active PRF research grant, including a grant on time extension, may not submit an application for a new grant. 
  • (Only applies to UR program): Principal investigators (lead PI or Co-PI) may have only one UR grant application considered in a 12-month period. Thus, a principal investigator (lead PI or Co-PI) who has an UR proposal denied may not submit another UR proposal until the Advisory Board meeting one year later. 
NIH Updates
PI's May Now Use Longer Titles - Up to 200 Characters

NIH's eRA systems can now accept project titles of up to 200 characters. That's right - eRA systems will no longer truncate your project titles to 81 characters. Over the years we have seen some rather unfortunate truncations so this is a welcome and long overdue change. 

Keep in mind that when submitting a Revision Application, you must use the exact project title displayed in eRA Commons for the awarded application. If the project title of the awarded grant was truncated to 81 characters, then only those 81 characters can be used for the Revision Application. 

NIH & AHRQ Update Font Guidelines for Applications to Due Dates On or After January 25, 2017 

Notice Number: NOT-OD-17-030
This NIH Notice replaces all previous font guidance. It updates the recommended font list and no longer requires that black text be used within grant application attachments.  For applications submitted for due dates on or after January 25, 2017, text in PDF attachments must follow these minimum requirements: 
  • Text Color: No restriction. Though not required, black or other high-contrast text colors are recommended since they print well and are legible to the largest audience. 
  • Font Size: Must be 11 points or larger. Smaller text in figures, graphs, diagrams and charts is acceptable, as long as it is legible when the page is viewed at 100%. 
  • Type Density: Must be no more than 15 characters per linear inch (including characters and spaces). 
  • Line Spacing: Must be no more than six lines per vertical inch. 

Since some PDF converters may reduce font size, it is important to confirm that the final PDF document complies with the font requirements. 

The following fonts are recommended, although other fonts (both serif and non-serif) are acceptable if they meet the above requirements: 

  • Arial 
  • Georgia 
  • Helvetica 
  • Palatina Linotype

Legibility is of paramount importance. Applications that include PDF attachments that do not conform to the minimum requirements listed above may be withdrawn from consideration. 

Related Resources: 

NSF Updates
Identify Errors Impacting your NSF Proposal

NSF has an automated process to help PIs identify proposal errors prior to submission in Fastlane. The next release of auto-compliance checks will support additional standard proposal type requirements and include checks for new types of proposals. NSF plans to implement FastLane changes effective January 30, 2017  that include the new compliance checks. Checks are run during “Check Proposal,” “Forward to SPO,” and “Submit Proposal.”

See the NSF website for a complete listing of current automated compliance checks. 

NSF Announces Two New Types of Proposals: GOALI and RAISE

Two new types of proposals will be incorporated into the PAPPG with new required supporting documents and automated proposal compliance checks.
  • Grant Opportunities for Academic Liaison with Industry (GOALI): GOALI is a type of proposal that seeks to stimulate collaboration between academic research institutions and industry. The new GOALI automated compliance checks will require that at least one Co-Principal Investigator (PI) exists on the proposal and the “GOALI-Industrial PI Confirmation Letter” is uploaded at the time of proposal submission. All automated compliance checks applicable to Research proposals will apply to GOALI proposals. GOALI proposals were previously submitted via a program solicitation.
  • Research Advanced by Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering (RAISE): The RAISE proposal type supports bold, interdisciplinary projects. The new RAISE automated compliance checks will require that a “RAISE-Program Officer Concurrence Email” is uploaded at the time of proposal submission, the proposal award budget is less than or equal to $1 million, and the proposal duration is less than or equal to 5 years. All automated compliance checks applicable to Research proposals will apply to RAISE proposals.
Note: The Facilitation Awards for Scientists and Engineers with Disabilities (FASED) type of proposal will be included on the FastLane dropdown menu. All automated compliance checks applicable to Research proposals will also apply to FASED proposals.

Timely Topic
President Signs Cures Act: Provisions May Reduce Burdens

On December 13th President Obama signed into law the 21st Century Cures Act, a sweeping law of nearly 1,000 pages that contains a variety of provisions of interest to research compliance officials. For example, the law calls for the creation of a Research Policy Review Board to advise the government on regulations and requires NIH to reduce administrative burdens, particularly with regard to subrecipient monitoring and financial conflict of interest reporting. Many aspects of the law embody the recommendations contained in various reports, including most recently from the National Academy of SciencesThe law also requires NIH "to convene a working group to develop recommendations for a formal policy to enhance the rigor and reproducibility of NIH-funded scientific research." Within 18 months, NIH is to "consider the working group's recommendations and develop or update policies as appropriate within 18 months," while working group itself will "report to Congress on recommendations and any subsequent policy changes within two years." 

The following document contains funding priority areas associated with the Cures Act:  http://tinyurl.com/zvow9ot

  Compliance Corner
HHS and 15 Other Federal Departments & Agencies Announce Revisions to the Federal Policy for the Protection of Human Subjects (The Common Rule)

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and fifteen other Federal Departments and Agencies have announced revisions to modernize, strengthen, and make more effective the Federal Policy for the Protection of Human Subjects that was originally promulgated as a Common Rule in 1991. This final rule is intended to better protect human subjects involved in research, while facilitating valuable research and reducing burden, delay, and ambiguity for investigators. These revisions are an effort to modernize, simplify, and enhance the current system of oversight. 

The final rule has been put on public display on January 18, 2017, by the Office of the Federal Register and can be accessed here. It is expected that the final rule will be published in the Federal Register on January 19, 2017. 

HHS released a Press Release about the final rule that can be accessed here
New Video Case Studies on RCR Topics Released

The ORI Division of Education and Integrity (DEI) has released a new series of video case studies to address integrity issues faced by those involved in the research endeavor.     
The videos follow the story of Dr. Jeff Thompson and his budding research lab.  Amit, a postdoctoral fellow, and Ashley, a graduate student, are navigating challenges inherent to working in a competitive research environment. By touching upon topics that affect researchers at all levels of their careers, such as mentoring, authorship and publication practices, data integrity, and possible  research misconduct, these scenarios encourage viewers to consider how to make responsible choices at every turn. 

To view the full list of case study videos click here

The video case studies can be viewed and downloaded from the ORI website: https://ori.hhs.gov/videos/case-study


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