NSF PAPPG 2020 Changes

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has recently released their PAPPG (NSF 20-1) which will be effective June 1, 2020.

A 20-1 version of the NSF Checklist will be added to the researchadmin website by March 31, 2020.

NSF has posted the slides and video recording from their February 2020 PAPPG Webinar at https://www.nsfpolicyoutreach.com/resource-center/. All ASU staff who manage NSF proposals and/or awards are encouraged to watch the webinar.

There are a few significant changes/updates that RAs should be aware of:

  • Biographical Sketches [II.C.2.f]
    • Biosketches must be in NSF-approved format, which requires either (1) use of SciENcv, or (2) use of an official NSF PDF form (to be released by NSF soon, see: NSF Approved Formats for the Biographical Sketch).
      • NSF has encouraged investigators to make the transition to SciENcv.as soon as possible. The NSF biosketch feature in SciENcv is already available.
      • Attached at the bottom of this post are some resources that colleagues at other institutions have shared on the National Research Administration Listserv (RESADM-L)
    • Synergistic activities language has been clarified to indicate that synergistic activities should be specific and must not include multiple examples to further describe the activity. (e.g., Teaching XYZ Class at ASU 2012, UofA 2013, NAU 2014 would not be compliant. Compliant version: Teaching XYZ Class). Note: The PAPPG Webinar goes over additional synergistic activity examples.
  • Current & Pending Support [II.C.2.h]
    • C&P documents must be in NSF-approved format which currently appears to require either (1) use of SciENcv, or (2) use of an official NSF PDF form (to be released by NSF soon), see: NSF-Approved Formats for Current and Pending Support)
    • Knowledge Enterprise (KE) is currently investigating to see if there is potential for integration between ASU’s ERA system and SciENcv and/or if NSF will provide specifications that can be applied to our ERA Current & Pending Tool in order to generate C&P reports that are in NSF-approved format.
    • The SciENcv C&P feature has not yet rolled out, and the PDF form has not yet been released. Check the NSF-Approved Formats for Current and Pending Support for updates.
    • FAQ’s have been posted for NSF C&P requirements, including guidance for investigators related to including or excluding various types of support (e.g., work-for-hire/services, gifts, in-kind contributions, start-up packages etc.)
  • Collaborators & Other Affiliations (COA) [II.C.1.e] instructions have the following updates:
    • Removed language requiring that documents be saved as .xlsx
    • Clarified that rows can be added
    • Clarified that the instructions at the top of the document can be deleted
  • Project Description [II.C.2.d(i)]
    • The Project Description does not need to include the separate section labelled “Intellectual Merit”, but will still require the section labelled “Broader Impacts”.
      • Note that the Project Summary must still contain both sections.
  • Budget & Budget Justification [II.C.2.g]
    • Reminder added: proposers should check solicitations for additional budgetary preparation requirements for mid-scale and major facilities proposals.
    • Participant Support, language on costs related to service agreements/contracts has been revised to improve clarity.
    • Added guidance additional types of costs that may appear under “Publication/Documentation/Dissemination”:
      • This section of the budget may be used to request funding for data deposit and data curation costs.
  • RAPID and EAGER proposals will require e-mail documentation of Program Officer approval. [II.E.1II.E.2]
  • Research.gov is being updated to allow for more proposal and submission types – Check Research.gov for the latest capabilities. 
  • Conference Proposal instructions include the following updates [II.E.7]:
    • Requirement that information on the complaint submission and resolution process be included in the policy or code-of-conduct proposers disseminate to conference participants.
      • KE is developing a letter to be included in NSF proposals, as well as a letter to be distributed to conference participants.
    • Proposals must include a plan for recruiting speakers and attendees
    • Proposals must include plans to identify resources for childcare/family care at conference site
  • NSF Award Guidelines
    • Changes to person-months devoted to a project or with withdrawal of a PI/Co-PI must be submitted at least 30 days before the proposed change or as soon as the change is known. [VII.B.2.bVII.B.2.d]