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NSF Updates Implemented in the New PAPPG Effective January 30, 2023

NSF recently issued a new version of the NSF PAPPG 23-1. OSP wants to remind you that this new version of the PAPPG includes the following significant changes taking effect next week:

Updated Biosketch Requirements

NSF has released updated biographical sketch requirements for new proposals submitted on/after January 30, 2023.

NSF made the following enhancements to the biosketch format:

    • Corrected margins for compliance with NSF policy
    • Included the revision date (rev. 01/19/2023) at the bottom of each page

Currently, the NSF fillable PDF and SciENcv are the two approved formats for biosketches.

The new NSF fillable PDF will be accepted until October 22, 2023. After that, NSF will mandate the use of SciENcv only. Even though the NSF fillable PDF is acceptable in the interim, NSF encourages all senior personnel to begin migrating over to SciENcv well in advance of the October 2023 implementation.

Biosketch formatting remains at the same 3-page length with the following required sections:

    • Identifying Information
    • Organization and Location
    • Professional Preparation
    • Appointments and Positions
    • Products
    • Synergistic Activities
    • Certification

The SciENcv version will automatically include certification. The NSF fillable PDF version will need to be certified by the investigator by typing out their full name in the designated Signature field at the bottom of the form.

Non-compliant biosketches will receive an error message when uploaded. Please make sure to use one of the approved formats to avoid this.

Staff from NSF and NIH conducted a webinar to discuss the revised formats and demonstrate the SciENcv system. A recording of the webinar can be found at NSF Policy Outreach.

For more information please visit the following NSF resources:

Safe and Inclusive Working Environments for Off-Campus or Off-Site Work

NSF has added a section to the PAPPG, Proposal Preparation 2. e.9., that will require facutly to develop a project specific plan for each project involving off-campus or off-site research, to ensure a safe and harassment-free evironment for all participants and "build inclusive scientific climates where people can learn, grow, and thrive." Each plan must address:

    • Abuse of any person, including, but not limited to harassment, stalking, bullying, or hazing of any kind, whether the behavior is carried out verbally, physically, electronically, or in writing; or
    • Conduct that is unwelcome, offensive, indescent, obscene, or disorderly.

Per NSF, this plan will also need to identify steps the University is taking to nurture an inclusive off-campus or off-site working environment. 

OSP is currently building tools and guidance to assist senior personnel in developing these plans which will be announced later this month. If you have questions in the meantime, please let us know.

System Updates

  • ProSPCT

The Program Suitability & Proposal Concept Tool (ProSPCT) is an NSF portal that allows for submission of Concept Outlines. The PI will create and submit the concept outline, and all users must have an active account to access ProSPCT.

  • Broad Agency Announcements (BAA)

Although NSF will primarily disseminate opportunities through solicitations, they may also utilize BAAs for basic and applied research, scientific studies, and experimentation. Funding for these will be in the form of grants, cooperative agreements, contracts, or other arrangements.

  • Concept Outlines

Guidance for concept outlines are formally included in the PAPPG 23-1.

Concept outlines – a concise summary of project ideas – allow NSF program officers to notify the principal investigators whether full proposals can or should be submitted. Each funding announcement will clarify whether Concept outlines must be submitted via email or ProSPCT. Concept outlines can be submitted to solicitations that do not require their submission, and they should be submitted by the PI. 

    • Staff from NSF conducted a webinar to discuss Concept Outlines. A recording of the webinar can be found at NSF Policy Outreach.
Last Updated: 2/10/23