Build and Broaden (B2) supports fundamental research and research capacity across disciplines at minority-serving institutions (MSIs) and encourages research collaborations with scholars at MSIs. Growing the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) workforce is a national priority. National forecasts of the impending shortage of workers with science and engineering skills and essential research workers underscore a need to expand opportunities to participate in STEM research (President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology, 2012).
MSIs make considerable contributions to educating and training science leaders for U.S. economic growth and competitiveness. Yet NSF has received comparatively few grant submissions from, or involving, scholars at MSIs. Targeted outreach activities reveal that MSIs have varying degrees of familiarity with funding opportunities within NSF and particularly within the Social, Behavioral and Economic (SBE) Sciences Directorate. As a result, NSF is limited in its ability to support research and training opportunities in the SBE sciences at these institutions. With its emphasis on broadening participation , Build and Broaden is designed to address this problem. SBE offers Build and Broaden in order to increase proposal submissions, advance research collaborations and networks involving MSI scholars, and support research activities in the SBE sciences at MSIs. Proposals that outline research projects in the SBE sciences that increase students' pursuit of graduate training, enhance PI productivity build research capacity, or cultivate partnerships are especially encouraged to apply.
Proposals are invited from single principal investigators based at MSIs and from multiple co-investigators from groups of MSIs. Principal investigators who are not affiliated with MSIs may submit proposals, but must collaborate with PIs, co-PIs, or senior personnel from MSIs and describe how their project will foster research partnerships or capacity-building with at least one MSI as a primary goal of the proposed work. Proposals may address any scientific and cross-disciplinary areas supported by SBE. These areas include anthropology, archaeology, cognitive neuroscience, decision science, ecological research, economics, geography, linguistics, law and science, organizational behavior, political science, public policy, security and preparedness, psychology, and sociology. To find research areas supported by SBE please visit the SBE programs page or visit the NSF funding and awards page.