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Reviewing proposals for NSF grants

The Div. of Chemistry of the US National Science Foundation (NSF) is increasing its pool of reviewers and has asked that chemists worldwide be informed that well-qualified reviewers for its grant applications are needed.

The NSF, which supports basic research and education in science and engineering, recognizes the importance of international participation in its activities. According to A.B. Ellis, director of the NSF Div. of Chemistry Proposals, proposals submitted for funding by US chemists are judged through peer review by respected scientists from around the world who work in academia, government, or industry. Ellis added, 'This enables us to obtain broad, global perspectives on the supported research. In addition, reviewers are occasionally asked to serve on panels and to participate in workshops on emerging research and education themes. The NSF provides support for travel and lodging associated with such activities for all participants. Reviewers benefit from an expanded network of international ties and the opportunity to develop new partnerships related to research, education, and workforce development.'

Interested scientists who have not previously served as NSF reviewers should visit the NSF Web site at Ellis pointed out that NSF reserves the right to choose reviewers. While they are unable to assure individuals that they will be asked to review proposals, they do attempt to call upon as many qualified reviewers as possible, and they try to limit the number of requests that they make to any single individual, recognizing the many demands reviewers have on their time.

reprinted from /Chemistry International/, Sept-Oct 2003, p17.