Texas Sea Grant Call for Proposals 2014-2016

 

Timeline:

· December 7, 2012: Call for Proposals released

· February 15, 2013: Pre-proposals due to Texas Sea Grant

· March 15, 2013: Pre-proposal applicants notified of recommendations

· June 3, 2013: Full proposals due to Texas Sea Grant

· September 30, 2013: Full proposal applicants notified

· Project initiation: February 1, 2014

· Project completion: January 31, 2016

 

The Texas Sea Grant College Program is inviting pre-proposals for the next two-year grant cycle (February 1, 2014-January 31, 2016). We are seeking to fund original and innovative research that has public relevance and is aligned with one or more of our four focus areas:

      1. Healthy Coastal Ecosystems
      2. Sustainable Fisheries and Aquaculture
      3. Resilient Communities and Economies
      4. Environmental Literacy and Workforce Development

To learn more about these four focus areas, we encourage you to read the 2014-2017 National Sea Grant Strategic Plan: http://texas-sea-grant.tamu.edu/WhoWeAre/StrategicPlan2012.html

Proposed research projects must integrate outreach or education activities, relevant to the research proposed. Identification of outreach or education components is not required at the pre-proposal stage.

ANY field of study is eligible. This includes, but is not limited to, the following fields: physical sciences, natural sciences, geosciences, engineering, math, health sciences, veterinary sciences, social, behavioral and economic sciences, agricultural sciences, archeology, planning, law, policy, communications, education and business.

We are especially interested in receiving pre-proposals to support multi-disciplinary research, beginning investigators, underrepresented investigators, proposals that involve undergraduate and graduate students in research and collaborations between institutions of higher education and industry.

The process involves two steps: (1) proposers must submit a pre-proposal by 5 PM CST Friday, February 15, 2013; and (2) proposers whose pre-proposals are encouraged to be developed for full proposal submission will be invited to submit a full proposal by 5 PM CST Monday, June 3, 2013.

NO PROPOSALS WILL BE ACCEPTED AFTER THE DEADLINE.


Important Notice to Proposers

Please be aware that significant changes have been made to the pre-proposal preparation guidelines, submission process and review process. Please read the new request for pre-proposals and do not rely on previous guidelines or prior proposal submissions.


Eligibility

(1) Universities and colleges: Texas universities, and two- and four-year colleges (including community- colleges) acting on behalf of their faculty members.
(2) Nonprofit, non-academic institutions: Independent museums, observatories, research laboratories, professional societies, and similar organizations in Texas that are directly associated with educational or research activities.
(3) For-profit organizations: Commercial firms, especially small businesses with strong capabilities in scientific or engineering research or education. We are interested in supporting projects that involve universities and the private sector.
(4) State, local and Indian tribal governments.
(5) Unaffiliated persons: Individuals who have no affiliations with organizations that could act as grantee organizations may receive support for meritorious research if they have the capability and use of facilities needed to perform the work and agree to fiscal arrangements satisfactory to Texas Sea Grant and Texas A&M University.


Budget

No budget is required at the pre-proposal stage. At the full proposal stage, target budgets should be no greater than $150,000 per year in direct and indirect costs (F&A) combined. The applicable indirect cost rate(s), negotiated by the organization with the cognizant negotiating agency, must be used in computing indirect costs for a proposal.

There is mandatory cost-sharing. For every two federal dollars received by a PI, there is a one dollar non-federal cost-sharing requirement. Institutional cost-sharing may be one of two forms: in-kind contributions or matching funds. In-kind contributions are defined under federal guidelines as "contributions other than cash." While they usually add real value to a project, they do not require an actual cash outlay. Some examples of in-kind contributions are effort (existing salaries and benefits of investigators and others working on the proposed project and paid from non-federal sources), indirect costs not charged to the sponsor, third-party contributions and donated labor, materials and services. Matching Funds are actual cash contributions.


Full Proposals

Due Date: Monday, June 3, 2013 5:00 PM CST

Full Proposal Applicants Notification Date: September 30, 2013


Full Proposal Preparation

Applications must adhere to the provisions under Format Requirements and Content Requirements below.

Format Requirements: All application materials should be submitted in Portable Document Format (PDF) or a common word processing format, and when printed out should meet all format requirements. All pages must be single- or double-spaced; printed or typed in at least 12-point font; and printable on 8.5-inch x 11-inch paper, with 1-inch margins.

Content Requirements: Brevity will assist reviewers and program staff in dealing effectively with proposals. Therefore, the Project Description may not exceed 12 pages.

Tables and visual materials, including charts, graphs, maps, photographs and other pictorial presentations are included in the 12-page limit. The signed title page, project summary, references, budgets and justification, previous, current and pending support, letter(s) of support, vitae, NEPA questionnaire, and data sharing plan do not count towards the 12-page limit. All information needed for review of the proposal should be included in the main text; no appendices are permitted.

For each proposal the following information must be included:

  1. Investigator Records and Resumes: Carried over from preliminary proposal stage and updated to reflect changes in senior personnel.
  2. Project Summary: One or two page description that includes project title, list of related Texas Sea Grant funded projects (if any), keywords and Sea Grant classification codes, short- and long- term project objectives related to Texas Sea Grant goals and strategies, summary of approach and methods, and rationale explaining project importance and why Texas Sea Grant is appropriate.
    A generic title page can be downloaded here (http://www.seagrant.noaa.gov/funding/forms.html).
    Sea Grant classification codes can be downloaded here (PDF)
  3. Full Project Narrative: The primary basis for funding decisions, this 12-page document discusses the problem or opportunity addressed, rationale and current status, approach, expected results, engagement plan, dissemination of results and references.
  4. Budget: Completed budget worksheet that includes separate budgets for years 1 and 2, and a cumulative budget. All subawards will require full project documentation (narrative and budget) and official approvals from subawardee organizations or institutions.
  5. Budget Justification: Separate detailed justification for each budget item must be added to each budget form. Subawards require additional scope of work and budget worksheet documents, added as attachments in the subaward budget justification.
  6. Current and Pending Support: Planned and ongoing research funding for all investigators. This information will be used to assess capacity to complete proposed project.
  7. Support Letters: Letters of support from collaborating institutions, contributors of in-kind or matching funds, and organizations that will benefit from project results.
  8. Required NOAA Documents: (i) Data sharing plan that meets requirements by the new NOAA environmental sharing policy at: www.nosc.noaa.gov/EDMC/ (projects selected for funding will be required to ensure implantation of their submitted data sharing plan); (ii) National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) questionnaire. Download the (NEPA) questionnaire (PDF). Please compile all NOAA documents along with the project narrative into one single document. These pages do not count towards the 12 page count.

For any questions or concerns, please contact Dr. Mona Behl. For any budget related questions or concerns, please contact Mr. Terry Poehl.

All proposals must be submitted via eSeaGrant by the deadline. eSeaGrant can be accessed at the following URL:

https://lab3.tamu.edu/RFP/proposals/cpanel_login.php

Instructions on how to register to use the system and how to navigate the system are available here.


Full Proposal Review Process

Texas Sea Grant strives to conduct a fair, competitive, transparent merit-review process for the selection of projects. All proposals will be reviewed by at least three persons outside of Texas who are experts in the particular fields represented by the proposal. Proposers will be invited to suggest names of persons they believe are especially well qualified to review their proposal and/or persons they would prefer not review their proposal. These suggestions may serve as one source in the reviewer selection process.

Review criteria include: rationale, scientific or professional merit, innovativeness, qualifications and past record of investigators, alignment with Sea Grant focus areas, public relevance and programmatic justification.

Texas Sea Grant will also convene external review panels before recommending final action on proposals. There will be two external review panels – one panel for the physical, natural, health and engineering sciences, and one panel for all other disciplines (social, behavioral and economic sciences, law, policy, education, etc.). Grants will be awarded to the most meritorious projects identified by both external review panels, with the aim of providing balance among Texas Sea Grant’s four focus areas. We anticipate awarding 6-12 grants.


Full Proposal Data Management Plan Requirement

Effective for all new NOAA funded research projects, data and information collected and/or created under NOAA grants and cooperative agreements must be made visible, accessible, and independently understandable to general users, free of charge or at minimal cost, in a timely manner, except where limited by law, regulation, policy or by security requirements.

The new requirement has two parts: (1) environmental data generated by a research project must be made available after a reasonable period of exclusive use, and (2) the grant proposal must describe the plan to make the data available.

To comply with this new requirement, proposers must provide a “Data Management Plan”, explaining how the data and metadata will be provided. Funds may be budgeted in the proposal for this task.

Data Management Plans are not required at the pre-proposal stage. More details about Data Management Plans and data sharing will be sent to proposers along with letters of invitation to submit full proposals.

Download the Data Sharing Proposal Templates and Examples (PDF)


Contact Information

Mona Behl
, Ph.D., Research Coordinator
Phone: 979-458-0449 or Email: monabehl@tamu.edu