ROSES … from NASA!
On Friday February 13, NASA’s Science Mission Directorate (SMD) released its annual Research Opportunities in Space and Earth Science (ROSES-2009) solicitation. With over 50 program elements (science research topics) solicited, nearly 20 of which are from the Planetary Sciences Division, the chances are good that there is an opportunity right up the alley of the researchers reading this blog.
Please go to http://nspires.nasaprs.com/external/ and click on “Solicitations”, then “Open Solicitations” and find ROSES 2009 in the list and follow that link. The full ROSES document (.PDF) is about 7 MB big, but contains both the very important “Summary of Solicitation”, the tables of due dates, and every program element description (organized by science division within SMD). Web pages for each program element (navigated to via the “Program Elements” link or the links from within the tables) provides the Summary and Program Element description documents as separate PDF files.
There are a number of programs specifically designed for new investigators. The Earth Science Division has a “New Investigator Program” (NIP – Appendix A.33). The Planetary Science Division offers the “Fellowships for Early Career Researchers” program (FECR – Appendix C.22). This program starts out as an ‘add on’ to select Planetary Science Division programs (look for list in C.22 or presence of footnote  in Tables 2 and 3), but becomes an opportunity for laboratory start-up funds. And there is an education opportunity too, advertised in Appendix E.
It is critically important that individuals new to proposing (and those of you experts who think you know what to do!) be sure to take the following steps. This will help ensure (but not guarantee!) that your proposal is compliant, meets all generic requirements, and is on time.
1. Read the Summary of Solicitation and the Program Element description carefully.
2. At least look at the NASA Guidebook for proposers (2009 edition) available at: http://www.hq.nasa.gov/office/procurement/nraguidebook/
3. Ensure that you have an NSPIRES account; that your organization is registered and that you have an approved affiliation with it; and that all your team members are also registered. You might also sign up for the SMD mailing list, so you will automatically receive emails about amendments to ROSES (and other things of interest).
4. Know who your AOR is (Authorized Organization Representative). This is the person who will actually submit your proposal for you. You’ll want to be in communication with this person in advance about any requirements (s)he may impose on the submission – how you submit, by when, etc.
In addition, you might want to check out SMD’s SARA website at http://nasascience.nasa.gov/researchers/sara . On this site, among other things, Max Bernstein has posted statistics of the success rate for various programs in previous year’s ROSES (not complete, but being updated as time permits). Also there is a short list of what has changed in ROSES 2009 over past years (http://nasascience.nasa.gov/researchers/sara/faqs/#1 )
Guest post by Susan K. Thanks, Susan!