Abstract collage of science-related imagery

Microbial Observatories (MO)

Status: Archived

Archived funding opportunity

This document has been archived.

Important information for proposers

All proposals must be submitted in accordance with the requirements specified in this funding opportunity and in the NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG) that is in effect for the relevant due date to which the proposal is being submitted. It is the responsibility of the proposer to ensure that the proposal meets these requirements. Submitting a proposal prior to a specified deadline does not negate this requirement.


The National Science Foundation (NSF), Directorate for Biological Sciences (BIO) announces the third competition for Microbial Observatories. The long-term goal of the Microbial Observatories activity is to discover previously unknown microbes and to describe and characterize microbial diversity, phylogenetic relationships, interactions, and other novel properties by developing a network of sites, "microbial observatories." Individual investigators or teams of investigators are encouraged to develop and conduct research at a variety of sites dedicated to studies of microbial communities over time and across environmental gradients.

Examples of areas for study include, but are not limited to: the discovery and culturing of as yet undescribed microorganisms and microbial consortia in diverse habitats, mechanisms regulating the exchange of genetic material, biochemical and metabolic properties of microbes, other attributes and activities of newly described or poorly understood microbes and microbial communities. Development and application of genomic approaches to these studies is strongly encouraged.

Projects supported are expected to establish or participate in an established, Internet-accessible knowledge network to disseminate the information resulting from these activities. In addition, educational and outreach activities such as formal or informal training in microbial biology and activities that will broaden the participation of underrepresented groups in microbial biology research and education, are expected.

Program contacts

Matthew D. Kane
Program Director
mkane@nsf.gov (703) 292-7186 BIO/DEB

Awards made through this program

Browse projects funded by this program
Map of recent awards made through this program