Why Fund Studies of Maya Architecture Instead of Saving Lives?

Rosemary Joyce posts a thoughtful piece about federal funding of research to the Berkeley Blog.

All grants funded by the NSF have gone through a rigorous– dare I say grueling?– peer review process, in which senior scientists across the country freely and without charge read and evaluate proposals as a service to the NSF. Our reviews of proposals include comparing what the proposal says it will do to well defined criteria developed by NSF. These include attention to the basic contribution to knowledge, the “intellectual merit” of the research (what will we know that we did not previously when the research is done?) and how the research will improve public understanding of science, expand participation in science, and where appropriate, how research might lead to improvements in everyday life. These “broader impacts” are taken seriously by researchers, who have shown their dedication to doing things like presenting classroom lectures for K-12 schools, making findings available on websites, and trying to use their knowledge to help guide public policy, for example, on how to cope with climate change.

Accelerating Science Award Program (ASAP)

Nominations are being accepted for “individuals who have used, applied, or remixed scientific research – published through Open Access – to make a difference in science, medicine, business, technology or society as a whole.”

The ASAP Program seeks to build awareness and encourage the use of scientific research — published through Open Access — in transformative ways. The program illuminates how the unrestricted exchange of information can advance science and medicine, and benefit society. The ASAP Program also aspires to encourage a new generation of individuals to embrace the application of scientific research published through Open Access.

More information is available online.

CUR Summer Proposal Writing Institute

Chapman University – Orange, CA
July 7-11, 2013
Registration deadline: Friday, May 24, 2013

This Institute will bring together faculty and administrators interested in preparing proposals for submission to external funding agencies. The four-day institute will consist of one-on-one work with a mentor, writing, small group discussions, and critiquing of proposals. The institute has been developed to assist novice to experienced proposal writers in drafting complete proposals for submission.

Please submit your application by Friday, May 24, 2013.

Please visit the CUR website  to complete your application.

For any questions, please do not hesitate to contact MeLisa Zackery at mzackery@cur.org or 202.783.4810 x 204.

Learning from rejection is part of applying for grants

Russell Olwell, of Eastern Michigan University, offers some sage advice in Inside HigherEd.

The ability to take rejection and use it to improve your grant writing practice is the difference between many faculty members who write one proposal and give up, and those who persist to become funded principal investigators (PIs)…

The first key to dealing with rejection and negative feedback is to plan for it in advance and build it into your schedule. If you are interested in being funded by a program, you need to commit to applying for it at least twice (if not three times). This does not mean that the first attempt is half-hearted, but that the plan is to apply, get feedback, and use that feedback to strengthen the proposal.

The article is definitely worth reading.

Federal Funding, the Song

You’ll receive the federal funding, you can add another wing
You’ll receive the federal funding, you can add another wing
Take your colleagues out to dinner, pay your brother to come and sing
Take your colleagues out to dinner, pay your brother to come and sing
Sing, sing, sing

You’ll receive the federal funding, you can have a hefty grant
You’ll receive the federal funding, you can have a hefty grant
Strategize this presentation, make them see that you’re the man
Strategize this presentation, make them see that you’re the man
Man, man, man

You’ll receive the federal funding, you can pass the simple test
You’ll receive the federal funding, you can pass the simple test
You can access information, make them see that you’re the best
You can access information, make them see that you’re the best
Best, best, best