A table entitled, NSF Pre-award and Post-award Disclosures Relating to the Biographical Sketch and Current and Pending Support has been developed to provide additional helpful reference information regarding pre-award and post-award disclosure information in the biographical sketch and current and pending support proposal sections. The table identifies where these disclosures must be provided in proposals as well as in project reports.
1. If an individual designated as senior personnel on a project does not have effort in a given year, how does this relate to reporting “person months committed to the project” in current and pending support?
The Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG), Chapter II.C.2.h states “Current and pending support includes all resources made available to an individual in support of and/or related to all of his/her research efforts, regardless of whether or not they have monetary value.” Senior personnel are required to provide “the number of person-months (or partial person-months) per year to be devoted to the project by the individual.” NSF uses the information provided to assess the capacity of the individual to carry out the research as proposed, as well as to help assess any potential overlap/duplication with the project being proposed.
Person-month information included in current and pending support may differ from the person-months requested on the budget for a given project.
It is important to note that NSF is not asking for how much time is specified on the budget for a particular individual(s); rather, for their Current and Pending Support submission, how much time the individual(s) is/are planning to spend to complete the scope of work on the proposed project and/or award. If the individual(s) will be spending time on the proposed project or award, then that time must be reported in Current and Pending Support.
2. How should individuals report projects that exceed five years in current and pending support?
For projects that exceed five years, individuals should report on the next five years of the project in current and pending support. For example, if the individual is in year three of a ten-year award, they would report on years three through seven.
3. The NSF-approved current and pending support formats require us to provide person-months per year committed to the project, however, our organization’s fiscal year spans two calendar years. Which year should we include when reporting person-months per year?
If you are reporting person-months that span two calendar years, you should enter the latter year. For example, if your entry covers your organization’s fiscal year of June 2021 through May 2022, you would enter “2022” for the year and include the corresponding person-months as defined and used by your organization in proposals submitted to NSF.
4. How can an Authorized Organizational Representative (AOR) “certify” representations that its employees may make regarding current or pending support based on information not available to the organization?
In most cases, NSF accepts proposals from and awards grants to an organization, not to an individual. In submitting a proposal and/or accepting federal funds under a grant instrument, proposers/grantees assume legal and financial responsibility and accountability for the content of the submitted proposal, any awarded funds and the performance of the grant-supported activity.
As such, proposers/grantees are responsible for all information and data provided to the federal agency under the proposal or grant agreement and may need to confirm the accuracy and completeness of the information that its employees provide to the AOR in order to appropriately comply with NSF’s policies on reporting current and pending support. NSF does not dictate the terms of or interfere with the employment relationship between the grantee and its employees. Organizations will need to establish whatever internal communication or other processes they believe are necessary in order to provide the required current and pending support information.
5. Is mentoring of a trainee an example of a time commitment that must be reported in current and pending support? There is a difference between a time commitment and an activity that takes time. Should the latter be reported in current and pending support?
An individual need not identify any mentoring activities in their current and pending support submission that take place as part of their regular appointment at the proposing organization. If an individual, however, receives in-kind support either directly or through their organization from an external source to support mentoring of undergraduate or graduate students, that in-kind support, including the time associated with such mentoring, should be identified in the individual’s current and pending support submission.
6. What is the scope of “research endeavors” that must be reported in current and pending support? For example, a trainee’s research that will result in their dissertation is not part of the PI’s individual research endeavors, correct? Should only the research endeavors of an individual be reported and not all the research in their lab?
“Research endeavors” in the context of the guidance provided in PAPPG Chapter II.C.2.h. does refer to the endeavors of the particular individual. The current and pending support information that must be provided is all planned, pending, and current support that is either provided directly to the individual, or to the individual through their organization in support of that individual’s research endeavors. Therefore, a trainee’s research does not need to be reported.
7. For Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) investigator effort and lab support, what are the requirements for reporting current and pending support? Since HHMI investigators, for the duration of their HHMI appointment, are HHMI employees and HHMI pays their expenses, should any un-costed commitments be included in the Facilities, Equipment and Other Resources section with a statement that the individual will devote the necessary resources to accomplish the objectives of the project?
If an HHMI investigator is proposed to serve as senior personnel and is not requesting salary compensation in the NSF budget, then their name, and the estimated amount of time to be devoted to the project should be identified in the Facilities, Equipment and Other Resources section of the proposal.
8. How should a PI document effort when no salary is being requested? Should this be indicated in the Facilities, Equipment and Other Resources section of the proposal with the effort indicated in the Current and Pending Support section?
If a PI or co-PI is not requesting salary support, they should be removed from the budget and their name and the estimated amount of time to be devoted to the project should be identified in the Facilities, Equipment and Other Resources section of the proposal.
9. I am a subawardee on a proposal that was submitted by a prime organization to NSF. For current and pending support, should my organization list the total amount requested for our subaward, or should we list the total award amount for the overall proposal?
The total award amount requested or received by the subawardee organization must be provided in Current and Pending Support.
10. I have received funding classified as ‘confidential’ per the client. Must I include information for the confidential project in the current and pending support section of the proposal?
Yes, if your organization seeks NSF funding, the information must be disclosed. Section 223 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2021 (Public Law No: 116-283 (01/01/2021)) and NSF policies require disclosure, even if such funding is deemed confidential.
To the extent allowed by law, NSF does not publicly disclose any information regarding pending proposals. With regard to proposals that receive NSF funding, NSF typically does not disclose information in the proposal regarding current and pending support from non-U.S. Government sources. NSF needs the information in the current and pending support section of the proposal to assess PI capacity and potential overlap/duplication.
11. Do I list my proposed project on the Current and Pending Support information?
Yes, in addition to ongoing projects and proposals currently under consideration from whatever source, the current and pending support information also must be provided for this proposed project and listed as “Pending”. See PAPPG Chapter II.C.2.h for additional guidance.
12. If there will be no effort in a given year (i.e., year 2 of a 3-year project) by an individual listed as senior personnel, what, if anything, should be reported in current and pending support for that year?
In instances when senior personnel are not actively working on a project during each year, only years in which they are committing time should be listed. In the example above, only years 1 and 3 would be entered in current and pending support. Year 2 would not be listed.