Next Generation Networks for Neuroscience (NeuroNex)

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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.

Technology-enabled, Team-based Neuroscience

Synopsis

Understanding how behavior emerges from the dynamic patterns of electrical and chemical activity of brain circuits is universally recognized as one of the great, unsolved mysteries of science. Advances in recent decades have elucidated how individual elements of the nervous system and brain relate to specific behaviors and cognitive processes. However, there remains much to discover to attain a comprehensive understanding of how the healthy brain functions, specifically, the general principles underlying how cognition and behavior relate to the brain’s structural organization and dynamic activities, how the brain interacts with its environment, and how brains maintain their functionality over time.

Achieving an understanding of brain structure and function that spans levels of organization, spatial and temporal scales, and the diversity of species requires an international, transdisciplinary collaborative effort to not only integrate discipline-specific ideas and approaches but also extend them to stimulate new discoveries, and innovative concepts, theories, and methodologies.

The objective of this phase of the NeuroNex Program is the establishment of distributed, international research networks that build on existing global investments in neurotechnologies to address overarching questions in neuroscience. The creation of such global research networks of excellence will foster international cooperation by seeding close interactions between a wide array of organizations across the world, as well as creating links and articulating alliances between multiple recently launched international brain projects. The potential transformative advances in neuroscience stemming from this activity will have profound scientific and societal impacts.

The goal of this solicitation is to support collaborative networks (approximately 15 to 20 investigators in each network) comprised of international teams of disciplinarily diverse experimentalists, theorists, and research resource (including technology and cyberinfrastructure) developers working on a common foundational question in neuroscience.  It is anticipated that these international networks will enable experimentation, analysis, and discovery in neuroscience at scales much larger than currently possible.

This interdisciplinary, international program is one element of NSF’s broader effort directed at Understanding the Brain, a multi-year activity that includes NSF’s participation in the Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies (BRAIN) Initiative (http://www.nsf.gov/brain/) and the phased approach to develop a research infrastructure for neuroscience as outlined in the Dear Colleague Letter NSF16-047. The need for a program that helps neuroscientists collect, standardize, manage, and analyze the large amounts of data that result from research attempting to understand how the brain functions has been recognized by stakeholders in the scientific community and by the U.S. Congress in the American Innovation and Competitiveness Act (AICA) of 2017. The NSF and international partner agencies envision a connected portfolio of transformative, integrative projects that leverage existing global investments in neurotechnologies and create synergistic links across domestic and international investigators and communities, yielding novel ways of tackling the challenges of understanding the brain in action and in context.

Program Contacts

Questions concerning a particular project’s focus, direction, and relevance to a participating funding organization should be addressed to:

Canadian Institutes for Health Research

For general inquiries, please contact:

  • Melody Sajedi, Advisor, Program Design and Delivery, telephone: 613-960-9475, email: melody.sajedi@cihr-irsc.gc.ca

Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft

Point of contact:

  • Dr. Anna Christa, telephone: +49 228 885 2632, email: anna.christa@dfg.de

Fonds de Recherche du Québec

For general inquiries and additional information about this program and the FRQ, please contact:

  • Sylvain Charbonneau, Program Director, telephone: 514-873-0321, email: sylvain.charbonneau@frq.gouv.qc.ca
  • Richard Brière, Senior Analyst, telephone: 514-873-0321, email: richard.briere@frq.gouv.qc.ca

Medical Research Council (part of UK Research and Innovation)

For general inquiries and additional information about this program and the UKRI-MRC, please contact:

  • Charlotte Inchley, Programme Manager – Neurosciences and Mental Health, UKRI-MRC, telephone: +44 (0)1793 41 6305, email: charlotte.inchley@mrc.ukri.org
Edda (Floh) Thiels
ethiels@nsf.gov (703) 292-8167 BIO/IOS
Sridhar Raghavachari
sraghava@nsf.gov (703) 292-4845 BIO/IOS
Reed S. Beaman
rsbeaman@nsf.gov (703) 292-7163 BIO/DBI
Claire A. Hemingway
chemingw@nsf.gov (703) 292-7135 OD/OISE
Krastan B. Blagoev
kblagoev@nsf.gov (703) 292-4666 MPS/PHY
William L. Miller
wlmiller@nsf.gov (703) 292-7886 CISE/OAC
Shubhra Gangopadhyay
sgangopa@nsf.gov (703) 292-2485
Gregg Solomon
gesolomo@nsf.gov (703) 292-8333 EHR/DRL
Kurt Thoroughman
kthoroug@nsf.gov (703) 292-7281 EHR/DRL
Junping Wang
jwang@nsf.gov (703) 292-4488 MPS/DMS

Awards Made Through This Program

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Map of recent awards made through this program