NSF and NOAA Seek Proposals For Climate Change Research Center

The National Science Foundation’s directorates of geosciences and of social, behavioral and economic sciences, in collaboration with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration are calling for proposals to create a center for catastrophic impact and risk assessment modeling related to climate change. The center — built along the template of the Industry-University Cooperative Research Center, or IUCRC — will generate research that improves climate change assessment and reduces its impacts to meet the needs of the financial and insurance sectors of the economy.

The nascent center allows researchers from multiple universities to work with catastrophe (or ‘cat’) and climate models alongside non-academics and members of the private sector. Academics and universities interested in submitting a proposal for the center should meet with companies in the finance and insurance sector to determine what research will benefit the industry. Interested parties should then generate four to five research aims based on those needs and build teams accordingly.

A May ’Dear Colleague’ letter from the NSF announcing the new center explains that “an IUCRC is initiated when a group of faculty and students from one or more universities, with an interest in conducting cutting edge, basic research, come together with the goal of addressing the pressing needs of a sector of the US economy. The faculty interview members of that sector to identify the most important issues holding it back, converge on a theme of high sector interest, and identify companies and other entities willing to sign on as founding members of the Center. … Each IUCRC is expected to grow and become independently sustainable by the end of the NSF support.”

The center will be a collaboration between various universities, with researchers across multiple locations, including a lead site and several supporting sites. Between about eight and 20 faculty members will conduct research at each location, and each site will have a different area of expertise relating to climate change.

Academics with established research aims should submit a preliminary proposal, and then submit a full proposal. Proposals will be considered twice a year, and interested researchers may submit proposals here.

NSF will host weekly office hours for those interested in submitting a proposal; register for the office hour here.

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Emma Richards

Emma Richards is a student at the University of Florida studying public relations. She is the social science communications intern at Sage Publishing.

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