New Funding Opportunity: NSF Convergence Accelerator Phase 1 and 2 for 2023 Cohort

NSF Convergence Accelerator

The NSF Convergence Accelerator has issued a new funding opportunity for three new research track topics aligned to equitable water solutions, chemical sensing applications, and bio-inspired design innovations. These research track topics were selected from the program’s ideation process and are a part of the program’s 2023 cohort.

"NSF’s Convergence Accelerator program provides a unique opportunity for researchers to collaboratively advance key technologies and develop critical and novel solutions to pressing societal and economic challenges,” said Erwin Gianchandani, NSF assistant director for Technology, Innovation and Partnerships. “Through this new funding opportunity, the TIP directorate is harnessing the nation’s vast and diverse talent to accelerate the positive and enduring impacts of NSF investments on society at scale."

Researchers and innovators have two submission pathways to submit their proposals to this funding opportunity: Solicitation, NSF 23-590, and Broad Agency Announcement (BAA) NSFBAA-CA23-01.

Since 2019, the Convergence Accelerator has brought a wide range of researchers and innovators together to develop use-inspired solutions aligned to topics of national importance,” said Douglas Maughan, head of the NSF Convergence Accelerator program. “We are excited to launch this new funding opportunity and encourage researchers and innovators from academia, industry, non-profit, government, and others to submit proposals to these three convergent research tracks or consider teaming with organizations who are going to submit.”

Convergent research track topics

The funding opportunity research track topics include: 

Track K: Equitable Water Solutions

Fresh water is critical for future ecosystems, human health, and national security. This track will converge foundational knowledge and advancements in environmental sciences, geosciences, engineering, computing, social and behavioral sciences as well as other disciplines to develop solutions for water quality, quantity, and equity issues. 

Track L: Real-World Chemical Sensing Applications

Society is faced with challenges related to environmental quality and monitoring, food safety, agriculture, disease diagnostics, security, and terrorism. This track builds on foundational knowledge and recent advances to transform scientific discoveries into practice for societal and economic benefits. Science advances include olfaction and chemical sensing, sensor technologies, digital olfaction, artificial intelligence, neuromorphic systems, computational modeling, biomanufacturing, and robotics.

Swedish Research Council and Vinnova, two Sweden government agencies, are partnering with the NSF Convergence Accelerator on Track L. Swedish researchers and innovators can submit proposals to lead or be a team member on a multidisciplinary team for Track L.

Track M: Bio-Inspired Design Innovations

Bio-inspired solutions are needed to mitigate complex societal challenges, including climate change, infrastructure monitoring and resilience, food production and human health. This track capitalizes on foundational knowledge of nature to inspire the creation of innovative concepts, approaches, and technologies that build and control similar to nature to address pressing societal and economic challenges.

Learn More:

Who can Apply: Researchers and innovators from academia, industry, government, nonprofit, and other organizations are encouraged to submit a letter of intent (required) and full proposal.  

Funding Opportunity: Submit your proposal using one of the submission pathways:

Solicitation Key Dates:   

  • Letter of Intent (required): July 11, 2023
  • Full Proposal Deadline: August 22, 2023
    *Full proposals are due 5 p.m. submitter’s local time.    

Informational Webinars for the 2023 NSF Phase 1 and 2 for 2023 Cohort 
Join an NSF Convergence Accelerator webinarto learn about the program and the current funding opportunity. During the webinars, participants will learn about the program’s model and fundamentals, including the program’s phased approach and innovation processes used to accelerate basic research into practice; and the solicitation opportunity and the research track focuses, required Convergence Accelerator fundamentals, and important submission information. The goal of these webinars is to bring awareness of this exciting opportunity to develop use-inspired solutions to have a positive impact on national and societal challenges.  

Optional 30 minute Track Breakouts

At 4:30 p.m. EDT, join us for an optional 30 minute breakout session featuring the three track topics. Here you can ask additional questions and engage with similarly-interested stakeholders and researchers to potentially assist you in forming your team and proposal.

May 25, 2023
3 – 5 p.m. EDT

June 6, 2023

3 – 5 p.m. EDT

Webinar Registration: