Important Information for Proposers

A revised version of the NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG) (NSF 22-1), is effective for proposals submitted, or due, on or after October 4, 2021. Please be advised that, depending on the specified due date, the guidelines contained in NSF 22-1 may apply to proposals submitted in response to this funding opportunity.

Dear Colleague Letter

Implementation of Full Proposal Submission through Research.gov for "No Deadline" Program Solicitations in the Directorate for Biological Sciences


Dear Colleagues:

The Directorate for Biological Sciences (BIO) is notifying members of the research communities of an important change to the program solicitations noted below, effective in calendar year 2020.

Innovating and migrating proposal preparation and submission capabilities from FastLane to Research.gov is part of the ongoing NSF IT modernization effort and is intended to provide the next generation of grants management capabilities for the research community, as described in Important Notice No. 147. The Research.gov Proposal Submission System improves the user experience while also reducing administrative burden through an intuitive interface and is built on flexible system architecture with the ability to meet both users' changing needs and emerging government requirements.

In accordance with the modernization effort, BIO will implement a requirement for submission of full proposals via Research.gov or Grants.gov for the program solicitations listed below in the Division of Environmental Biology (DEB), the Division of Integrative Organismal Systems (IOS), the Division of Molecular and Cellular Biosciences (MCB), and in the Research Resources Cluster of the Division of Biological Infrastructure (DBI). These represent the set of BIO solicitations that accept proposal submission at any time (i.e., have no deadlines). This is the first phase in an eventual shift to require all proposals be submitted via Research.gov or Grants.gov.

By using a phased approach and starting with the no-deadlines solicitations, BIO hopes to provide researchers with sufficient time to adjust to submissions through Research.gov and the sunsetting of FastLane. We do not anticipate that the change to Research.gov will have significant impacts on the submission process, and this migration will not affect the merit review process in any way. Additional technical support is available for those who are new to Research.gov and to those who encounter any issues with proposal preparation and submission.

Revised solicitations for the below impacted programs will be published in the coming weeks. After a 90-day grace period, during which submissions will still be allowed through FastLane, the new solicitations will no longer be available in FastLane, and any new proposals must be submitted through Research.gov or Grants.gov.

The programs with solicitations migrating from FastLane to Research.gov are:

Additional information including Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) and video tutorials is available on the Research.gov "About Proposal Preparation and Submission" webpage. The NSF Help Desk is also available for those who encounter issues with proposal preparation or submission.

Additional information will be available in the near future in the form of webinars and presentations. You are strongly encouraged to register at https://service.govdelivery.com/accounts/USNSF/subscriber/new to receive alerts of these documents and activities.

Please direct your comments and questions about these changes to BIOnodeadline@nsf.gov.

Joanne S. Tornow
Assistant Director
Directorate for Biological Sciences