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NSF Biological Sciences Update and Funding Opportunities

New NSF Biological Sciences Directorate

A Message from the NSF Assistant Director for Biological Sciences

Dear Colleagues,

As you likely know, the President’s Fiscal Year (FY) 2022 Budget Request was released at the end of May. It includes just over $10 billion for NSF, a 20 percent increase over FY 2021 levels. It also includes the creation of a new Directorate for translation, innovation, and partnerships.

As Dr. Panchanathan said, “This request will bolster the U.S. economy and our leadership in critical and emerging areas of research and technological advancements, which are essential to our long-term economic and national security,”

The budget process will continue on Capitol Hill over the next few months. At NSF, however, and in BIO specifically, we will not pause in funding cutting edge science and engineering, supporting the research community through physical and human infrastructure, and broadening participation in STEM.

To that end, I encourage you to review the funding opportunities below, including the newly released interdisciplinary Predictive Intelligence for Pandemic Prevention Phase I: Development Grants (PIPP Phase I). I also encourage you to engage with Program Directors through Division virtual office hours or direct one-on-one conversations. I also encourage you to share highlights from your work — publications, broader impacts, or otherwise — with your cognizant Program Officer as early as possible so we can raise up the great efforts happening across the biological sciences.

Additionally, if you are interested in being a part of supporting that research, we are always looking for Rotating Program Officers — I am proud to say that NSF was ranked 5th among midsize agencies in the Best Places to Work in the Federal Government and BIO placed 5th among 411 agency subcomponents across the entire government!

Finally, NSF will begin accepting nominations for the 2022 Alan T. Waterman Award on July 19. The award recognizes outstanding young researchers in any field of science or engineering supported by NSF and the fact sheet linked above provides a list of past awardees. I encourage you to consider nominating one of the rising stars in the biological sciences at your institution. Take a look at the Waterman Award website for information on criteria and tips on how to apply. The portal will close mid-September.


Joanne Tornow
NSF Assistant Director for Biological Sciences

Additional NSF Biological Sciences Funding Opportunities

As a reminder, the core programs in all BIO Divisions accept proposal submissions at any time and have no deadlines.