Announcement: Upcoming Topics for the 2022 NSF Convergence Accelerator Solicitation, DCL NSF 22-036
The NSF Convergence Accelerator has published a Dear Colleague Letter, DCL (NSF 22-036) to make the research and innovation community aware of the convergent research topics selected for the program's 2022 solicitation.
The goals of the NSF Convergence Accelerator are to accelerate use-inspired convergence research in areas of national importance and societal challenges, and to initiate convergence team-building capacity around exploratory, potentially high-risk proposals addressing selected convergent research topics.
The 2022 solicitation is expected to be published in the coming months. Once the solicitation is published the NSF Convergence Accelerator plans to hold informational webinars.
Track Topics Selected for the Upcoming 2022 Solicitation
Track H: Enhancing Opportunities for Persons with Disabilities
There are almost 50 million people with disabilities (PWD or PWDs) in the United States today. PWDs, especially women and those from traditionally underserved racial and ethnic groups, experience major physical and professional barriers that can impact their health, careers, and overall quality of life. The NSF Convergence Accelerator's Track H: Enhancing Opportunities for Persons with Disabilities will serve as a platform to bring together researchers, practitioners, and stakeholders from a wide range of disciplines and sectors to work on use-inspired solutions to enhance quality of life and employment access and opportunities for PWDs. The convergent research track topic was chosen based on the results of NSF-funded community workshops, such as the Accelerating Disability Inclusion in Workplaces Through Technology Workshop and Liberate 2021: Living Better through Rehabilitative and Assistive Technology.
Track I: Sustainable Materials for Global Challenges
The objective of the NSF Convergence Accelerator's Track I: Sustainable Materials for Global Challenges will be to converge advances in fundamental materials science with materials design and manufacturing methods in an effort to couple their end-use and full life-cycle considerations for environmentally- and economically-sustainable materials and products. This convergent research track topic was based on the results of NSF-funded community workshops, such as Accelerating Translational Materials R&D for Global Challenges and Socioresilient Infrastructure: Precision Materials, Assemblages, and Systems.
Track J: Food & Nutrition Security
The overarching goal of the NSF Convergence Accelerator's Track J: Food & Nutrition Security will be to accelerate convergence across food and nutrition sectors to address intertwined challenges in supporting population health, combating climate change, and addressing the nutritional needs of the most vulnerable by empowering youth, women, and disadvantaged communities. The convergent research track topic was chosen based on the results of NSF-funded community workshops, such as Digital and Precision Agriculture and Sustainable Systems Enabling Food Security in Extreme Environments and Food Deserts Employing a Convergence of Food, Energy, Water and Systems for Societal Impact.