Targeted Grants to Institutes: Application Instructions

RFA | Application Instructions | FAQ | Grant Policies and Procedures | Awardees

Application Deadline: October 16, 2017, at 11:59:59 p.m. EST

Important Note:
Applications should be started and submitted under the applicant’s own account on proposalCENTRAL. Applicants are encouraged to submit in advance of the deadline to ensure they have time to make any application corrections that might be necessary for successful submission.

Additionally, all applicants must work with their institutional officials to register their institution with proposalCENTRAL or ensure their existing proposalCENTRAL account is up-to-date. New applicants and their institutions are strongly encouraged to start the registration process at least four weeks prior to the application due date.

Please note that all deadlines are in Eastern Standard Time. If the deadline has expired, an applicant will not be able to see the SUBMIT button and will, therefore, not be able to submit his/her application.

For NEW proposalCENTRAL Users:

Step 1: Register as a proposalCENTRAL user:

  • Go to https://proposalcentral.altum.com/default.asp.
  • Select the CREATE ONE NOW button (Please see the proposalCENTRAL instructions for “How to Register as a proposalCENTRAL user” at https://proposalcentral.altum.com/review/InfoRequest.asp).
  • Once you have completed the required information and agreed to the Terms of Service and the Acceptable Use Policy, click on SAVE. An email will be sent to your email address containing a confirmation number. Note: This email will also contain both your username and password.
  • Log in (https://proposalcentral.altum.com/default.asp) using APPLICATION LOGIN, enter your confirmation number in the box provided on the next screen and click on SUBMIT CONFIRMATION NUMBER.
  • You will then be directed to your PROFESSIONAL PROFILE, where you will need to select a primary institution.
  • If your institution is already registered on proposalCENTRAL, you will see it listed in the search results.
  • If you do not see your institution listed, please ask your grants and contracts office (or equivalent) to create a profile for your institution on the system. (Please see proposalCENTRAL instructions on “How to Register your Institution with proposalCENTRAL” at https://proposalcentral.altum.com/review/InfoRequest.asp).
  • It is not a requirement for you to complete the other sections of your PROFESSIONAL PROFILE at this time. It is recommended that you do enter your degrees and personal data for applications (sections 2 and 4). Please be sure to save after completing each section.
  • Within the application, a red asterisk will indicate the required PROFESSIONAL PROFILE and INSTITUTIONAL PROFILE fields (see Applicant and Organization/Institution sections below).

Step 2: Navigate to the GRANT OPPORTUNITIES tab.

  • Select SIMONS FOUNDATION from the drop-down list and click on the FILTER LIST BY GRANT MAKER.
  • You will then see the list of current Simons Foundation grant opportunities.
  • Click on APPLY NOW to access the MATHEMATICS AND PHYSICAL SCIENCES-TARGETED GRANTS TO INSTITUTES application.
  • Enter a title in the TITLE PAGE section and click the SAVE button. This creates your application and stores it under the MANAGE PROPOSALS tab, and allows you to navigate to the other sections of the application.
  • Please be sure to save after completing each section.
  • You can navigate to each section by clicking on the NEXT button or by clicking on the section hyperlink in the left-hand navigation.
  • For further information, please see the proposalCENTRAL instructions on “How to Create an Application using proposalCENTRAL” at https://proposalcentral.altum.com/review/InfoRequest.asp.

For EXISTING proposalCENTRAL Users:

Step 1: Log in using APPLICATION LOGIN at https://proposalcentral.altum.com/default.asp.

Step 2: Navigate to the GRANT OPPORTUNITIES tab.

  • Select SIMONS FOUNDATION from the drop-down list and click on the FILTER LIST BY GRANT MAKER.
  • You will then see the list of current Simons Foundation grant opportunities.
  • Click on APPLY NOW to access the MATHEMATICS AND PHYSICAL SCIENCES-TARGETED GRANTS TO INSTITUTES application.
  • Enter a title in the TITLE PAGE section and click the SAVE button. This creates your application and stores it under the MANAGE PROPOSALS tab, and allows you to navigate to the other sections of the application.
  • Please be sure to save after completing each section.
  • You can navigate to each section by clicking on the NEXT button or by clicking on the section hyperlink in the left-hand navigation.
  • For further information, please see the proposalCENTRAL instructions on “How to Create an Application using proposalCENTRAL” at https://proposalcentral.altum.com/review/InfoRequest.asp.

Format of the Application: Proposal attachments should be single-spaced and in typeface no smaller than 10-point font. Margins, in all directions, must be at least ½ inch.

Applications Contain the Following Elements:

  1. Title Page: Enter the APPLICATION TITLE.
  2. Download Templates & Instructions: A CURRENT AND PENDING SUPPORT template is provided and can be used for the proposal attachment requirement noted below.
  3. Enable Other Users to Access this Proposal: This screen allows users to give other users access to the grant application, if necessary.
  4. Applicant: This information is pre-loaded from the applicant’s PROFESSIONAL PROFILE.
  5. Organization/Institution: This information is pre-loaded from the INSTITUTIONAL PROFILE. For both pre- and post-award management, select the appropriate signing official and financial officer from the drop-down list or enter the email address of a new official and click on ADD. Click on the SAVE or CLOSE WINDOW link — the official will now be listed as the assigned signing official or financial/fiscal officer. If a signing official and/or financial officer will be responsible for both pre- and post-award management of this grant, he or she only needs to be added once.

    NOTE: The applicant cannot act as the signing official and/or financial officer. These roles must be fulfilled as follows:

    • A signing official (SO) has institutional authority to legally bind the institution in grants administration matters. The individual fulfilling this role may have any number of titles in the grantee organization. The SO is responsible for the proper administration of the grant including, but not limited to, overseeing the submission of the grant activation agreement and progress reports. Additionally, the SO is required to certify that all information submitted is accurate, that the terms of the award are acceptable and that the institution will comply with all applicable laws and Simons Foundation policies. For most institutions, the SO is located in its Office of Sponsored Research or equivalent.
    • The financial officer (FO) is responsible for the proper accounting of grant funds. The individual fulfilling this role may have any number of titles in the grantee organization, including secretariat. In this role, the individual is required to complete the required annual financial statements, any budgets, and submit any changes to the payment information as needed. Additionally, the FO is required to certify that all information submitted is accurate, that the terms of the award are acceptable and that the institution will comply with all applicable laws and Simons Foundation policies.
  6. Key Personnel: Indicate up to five key scientific personnel directly involved in the proposal. If the applicant can be considered key scientific personnel, please include him/her in this section.
  7. Budget Period Detail: Provide a detailed, yearly three- to five-year budget in U.S. dollars. Awards must begin no later than July 1, 2018. After entering in the budget period start and end dates, please skip the section labeled DO NOT USE THIS SECTION. In the Proposal Budget for Direct Costs section, please itemize anticipated costs per program, within the designated sub-categories. A program could be, for example, a visiting professorship, a visiting scholars program, a conference, or a fellowship program. To add a new line item under each category, click on the ADD button.

    For each program, please select a sub-category for each line item, and provide an appropriate description. Each description should include the program name.
    For example:

    Program One:
    Line Item 1 Sub-Category: Salaries. Description: Visiting professorship summer salary
    Line Item 2 Sub-Category: Fringe Benefits. Description: Visiting professorship benefits package
    Line Item 3 Sub-Category: Travel. Description: Visiting professorship travel to and from institution

    Indirect Costs in total for all programs should be entered per budget period.

  8. Budget Summary & Justification: This section summarizes the budget entered in the Budget Period Detail section. Please provide a detailed justification for each program budget included in the Budget Period Detail section. The character limit for each box is 8,000.
  9. Proposal Attachments (attachments must be uploaded as unlocked PDFs; please confirm this before uploading):
    • Requested Support Summary: A summary of the support requested, including the specific scientific goals, background relevant to the application and the significance of the proposed support. (Six-page limit, plus up to two pages for references and figures.)
    • Budget: In addition to entering the budget in the Budget Period Detail section, the institution must upload a detailed, yearly three- to five-year budget in U.S. dollars in their template for additional reference.
    • A Curriculum Vitae: To be submitted for the applicant and all individuals noted in the Key Personnel section above. Required information includes:
      • information about professional preparation, positions held, and honors and awards;
      • a list of current and former collaborators, postdoctoral fellows supervised, and Ph.D. students trained within the past five years; and
      • a list of up to ten relevant publications.
    • Current and Pending Support: To be submitted for the applicant and all individuals noted in the Key Personnel section above. The list should include all financial resources — whether federal, non-federal, commercial or institutional — that are available in direct support of the individual’s research endeavors, including but not limited to research grants, cooperative agreements, contracts and/or institutional awards. The provided template does not have to be used, but each support item listed should include the following:
      • indication of active or pending,
      • award/project number,
      • principal investigator,
      • source of support,
      • title of project,
      • dates of approved/proposed project, and
      • annual direct costs.
    • 501(c)(3) Equivalency Determination Letter from the IRS (if applicable): For international institutions, upload a copy of the institution’s 501(c)(3) equivalency determination letter. The Simons Foundation requires an equivalency determination letter from the United States Internal Revenue Service (IRS) stating exemption under 501(c)(3) and, furthermore, either a 509(a)(1), (2) or (3) classification. If an international institution does not have this letter at the application stage, do not upload anything for this attachment type. However, if an international institution is selected for funding and does not have the aforementioned documentation, the foundation will require that the institution complete an equivalency determination with NGOsource (see Simons Foundation policies). The foundation will handle all administrative and financial aspects of this determination. IRS letters should not be uploaded for U.S. institutions.
    • Signed Signature Page: To be downloaded in the SIGNATURE PAGE(S) section of the application, signed by the designated signing official from the institution’s sponsored research office (or equivalent) and then re-uploaded as a proposal attachment. Please note that not all fields on the generated signature page will be populated. Only the signed first page of the signature page PDF file needs to be uploaded for this requirement.
  10. Validate: Click the VALIDATE button to check for any missing REQUIRED information or files. All missing required information will be listed on the screen. Please correct any missing information before submitting your application.
  11. Signature Page(s): Once all sections are completed, the signed signature page is to be downloaded in this section of the application, signed by the signing official from the institution’s sponsored research office (or equivalent) and then re-uploaded as a proposal attachment. Only the signed first page of the signature page PDF file needs to be uploaded for this requirement.
  12. Submit: This section will only appear if the deadline has not passed.

Simons Foundation Mathematics and Physical Sciences (MPS) Contact Information:
mps(replace this with the @ sign)simonsfoundation.org
212-524-6966

proposalCENTRAL Contact Information:
pcsupport(replace this with the @ sign)altum.com
800-875-2562

Download the Targeted Grants to Institutes Application Instructions as a PDF here.