Sneak Preview: NSF Expects To Issue Revised PAPPG in October

September 22, 2017 | By Jerry Ashworth | Post a Comment

xgran_bookshot(The following was excerpted from a recent article in the Federal Grants Management Handbook.) The National Science Foundation (NSF) plans to issue a revised version of its Proposal and Award Policies and Procedures Guide (PAPPG) in October, and the changes include language on research conducted outside the United States, the use of a collaborators and other affiliations (COA) template, as well as updated coverage on vertebrate animals and human research subjects.

In May 2017, NSF issued proposed revisions to the PAPPG, which was last released in October 2016 and became effective in January 2017, and accepted comments on these revisions over the summer. After reviewing the comments, NSF has now submitted the revised PAPPG to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for final approval. Once released, NSF anticipates the revised PAPPG to go into effect early next year, traditionally in January.

Jeremy Leffler, outreach specialist in the policy office in the NSF Division of Institution and Award Support, provided details about the PAPPG revisions to attendees at a recent Federal Demonstration Partnership meeting in Washington, D.C., although he alerted the audience that these revisions are still deemed “proposed” until they receive OMB approval.

One change under the eligibility standards would add a new subcategory for institutions of higher education (IHEs). While NSF includes IHEs as a category of recipient that may receive NSF awards, classifying IHEs as “two- and four-year IHEs (including community colleges) accredited in, and having a campus located in the U.S. acting on behalf of their faculty members,” it also included special instructions for international branch campuses of U.S. IHEs. The special instructions state that “if the proposal includes funding to be provided to an international branch campus of a U.S. IHE (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 U.S. campus. “You can’t just have an international office in the states and be eligible to submit a proposal as an international branch campus,” Leffler said.

In a related revision, Leffler explained that NSF is revising the eligibility of foreign organizations for funding. The revised version states that although NSF rarely provides funding to foreign organizations, it will consider proposals for cooperative projects involving U.S. and foreign organizations, provided support is requested only for the U.S. portion of the collaborative effort, and the applicant must explain why local support is not feasible and why the foreign organization can carry out the activity more effectively.

(The full version of this story has now been made available to all for a limited time on Thompson’s Grants Compliance Expert site.)



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