Simons Symposia

Important Dates
  • Application Deadline
  • Notification
  • Symposia Start Date
    Winter/Spring 2019
Contact Info

The Simons Foundation’s Mathematics and Physical Sciences division is currently soliciting proposals for its Simons Symposia series, which brings together mathematicians, theoretical physicists and theoretical computer scientists to interact and collaborate in a series of three symposia, held every second year and focusing on one topic or a tightly connected group of topics.

The first meetings in the new set of series will start in the winter or spring of 2019. The foundation expects to fund up to three series to start in 2019.

Format of a Symposium Series

An individual symposium series consists of up to three weeklong meetings on one topic or a tightly connected group of topics. A symposium series is initially approved for one year and renewed for up to two more meetings if successful. If the first meeting in the series occurs in year N, then subsequent meetings would occur in years N+2 and N+4.

Each symposium in the series may have up to 23 participants, including its organizing committee (two to four leaders in a field). It will have a focused theme and a schedule that leaves plenty of time for collaboration and open-ended discussion. In some areas, a tight focus on a new research development or a specific research problem would be appropriate; in others, a symposium might help set an agenda for the field. Please see previous Simons Symposia for reference.

Participation in a symposium is by invitation only. The Simons Foundation will issue invitations upon the recommendation of the organizers. The foundation will also make travel arrangements for all symposium participants and will provide support at the conference site. All expenses, including travel, lodging and meals, will be paid by the foundation.

Criteria for Judging Proposals

Proposals for new series will be judged on the basis of the significance and timeliness of the topic, the appropriateness of the symposium format, the likelihood of interesting science being completed or sparked and the scientific quality of the organizing committee.

How to Apply

Applications to organize individual symposium series that start winter or spring of 2019 are due by October 31, 2017, and are available on proposalCENTRAL (https://proposalcentral.altum.com/default.asp). The application should be submitted by a member of the organizing committee.

Please note: Institutional involvement and approval are not required for application.

Please see the Application Instructions for further information on and requirements for submitting an application. The organizing committees will be notified by December 31, 2017.

Application Requirements Include:

  1. Title of the symposium series.
  2. Organizing committee: a list of the members of the organizing committee, their institutions and contact information — one of the members should be designated as liaison with the foundation.
  3. Description of symposium series subject (three-page limit): Attention should be paid to the timeliness of the subject and to the question of why the symposium format is appropriate. Careful justification should be provided for the number of symposia in the proposed series.
  4. Key Invitees: A list of the key invitees and their institutions.
  5. Dissemination plan (three-page limit): a method, appropriate to the field and topic, of disseminating the results of the symposium to a wider scientific community.
  6. Curriculum vitae (two-page limit) for each member of the organizing committee.

Contact Information

mps@simonsfoundation.org
212-524-6966

Elizabeth Roy
Senior Program Manager, Mathematics and the Physical Sciences
212-524-6966
eroy@simonsfoundation.org

Download the Simons Symposia RFA as a PDF here.

 

 

 

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Important Dates
  • Application Deadline
  • Notification
  • Symposia Start Date
    Winter/Spring 2019
Contact Info

Deadline: October 31, 2017, at midnight Eastern Standard Time.

Important Note:
The application should be submitted by a member of the organizing committee. Institutional involvement and approval is not required for this application.

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.

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 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.
  • 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-SIMONS SYMPOSIA 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-SIMONS SYMPOSIA 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 Application
Proposal attachments should be typewritten, 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 symposium title.
  2. Enable Other Users to Access this Proposal: This screen allows you to give other users access to your grant application, if necessary.
  3. Applicant: This information is pre-loaded from the applicant’s PROFESSIONAL PROFILE.
  4. Abstract & Subject Classifications: Please provide a brief abstract of the scientific content of the proposed symposium series. The abstract text box has a 3,000-character limit. Select subject classification as indicated.
  5. Proposal Attachments (must be uploaded as PDF documents):
    • Organizing Committee: A list of the members of the organizing committee, their institutions and contact information.
    • Description of Symposium Subject (three-page limit): Attention should be paid to the timeliness of the subject and to the question of why the symposium format is appropriate. Careful justification should be provided for the number of symposia in the proposed series (1–3).
    • Key Invitees: A list of key invitees and their institutions.
    • Dissemination Plan (three-page limit): Must include some method of dissemination appropriate to the topic and the field.
    • Curriculum Vitae (two-page limit): One is needed for each member of the organizing committee and needs to include Ph.D. year, institution, advisor and positions held.
  6. 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.
  7. Submit: This section will only appear if the deadline has not passed.

Simons Foundation Division for Mathematics and the Physical Sciences Contact Information:
mps@simonsfoundation.org
212-524-6966

proposalCENTRAL Contact:
pcsupport@altum.com
800-875-2562

Download the Simons Symposia Application Instructions as a PDF here.

  1. How long will each symposium last?plus--large

    The symposium runs Monday through Friday. Participants arrive the Sunday before and depart the Saturday after.

  2. Are participants required to attend the entire week?plus--large

    Yes. No partial participation is allowed.

  3. What will happen day to day at the symposium?plus--large

    There will be a small number of lectures and dedicated time for interactions and collaborations.

  4. What is the AV setup of the meeting room?plus--large

    The meeting room comes equipped with three 6-by-4 blackboards as well as a projector and screen for digital presentations. A lavalier microphone is also available if needed.

  5. Will the participants have any free time during the symposium?plus--large

    There will be a group activity planned, such as a nature hike, on Wednesday afternoon. There is also an extended lunch break each day for participants to spend time collaborating in a relaxed atmosphere.

  6. Can my family stay at the resort during the symposium?plus--large

    The foundation does not allow spouses, families or others to join participants during the meeting. Participants who choose to invite guests to come before or stay after the meeting do so at their own expense. The Simons Foundation will not cover expenses associated with such extensions.

  7. Can I extend my stay at the resort, either a few days before or after the symposium?plus--large

    Participants are welcome to extend their stay at the resort at their own cost. The resort will honor the group rate three days before and after the symposium. Please provide the foundation with any updated arrival or departure dates for the purpose of arranging travel.

  8. Does the symposium publish any proceedings?plus--large

    Each symposium will have a dissemination plan, which may include published proceedings. Symposium notes, slides and summaries will be posted to the foundation’s website (https://www.simonsfoundation.org/mathematics-and-physical-science/simons-symposia/).

  9. Is there a registration fee to submit a proposal?plus--large

    No.

  10. Are all areas of mathematics, computer science and physics eligible?plus--large

    The Simons Symposia cover a wide range of fields in mathematics, physics and computer science.

  11. Am I allowed to apply if I am already on another symposium’s organizing committee?plus--large

    Yes.

  12. Do I need approval from my institution/organization to submit an application?plus--large

    No.

  13. If my organizing committee and I are not awarded a symposium series this year, may we apply again?plus--large

    Yes.

  14. To whom is the symposium proposal awarded?plus--large

    The symposium proposal is awarded to the organizing committee, although no funds are directly awarded. The foundation will administer all expenses.

  15. Who will be making the decision about whether my proposal is selected?plus--large

    Decisions will be made by a committee of distinguished scientists, including the foundation’s Scientific Advisory Board for Mathematics and the Physical Sciences.

  16. How do I get reimbursed for eligible expenses?plus--large

    Please see the Symposia Expense Reimbursement Policy on the foundation’s website for more information.

  17. Where do I submit my application?plus--large

    Log in to proposalCENTRAL (https://proposalcentral.altum.com/default.asp). You will find the Mathematics and Physical Sciences-Simons Symposia application in the list of Simons Foundation funding opportunities. Click APPLY NOW to start either application. Please see the Application Instructions for further information.

  18. How do I get in touch with proposalCENTRAL for technical questions?plus--large

    Email pcsupport@altum.com or call 800-875-2562.

  19. Are deadline times adjusted for time zones?plus--large

    No. Please be advised that deadlines on the application are in Eastern Standard Time. We highly recommend registering early and submitting your application with ample time for corrections prior to the deadline hour.

  20. I cannot find the SUBMIT button on the application. Where is it?plus--large

    If the submission deadline has not passed, use the VALIDATE button to check for missing requirements. If the problem persists, please contact proposalCENTRAL customer support, pcsupport@altum.com. If the deadline has passed, the submission period has closed, and you will not be able to submit. The foundation reviews requests for extensions on a case-by-case basis.

  21. I get an error message citing a missing section when I try to submit.plus--large

    Please click the VALIDATE button to review the application for missing sections. If you are still receiving error messages after completing and saving the indicated sections, please contact proposalCENTRAL customer support, pcsupport@altum.com.

  22. Is validating my application sufficient for submission?plus--large

    No. Validating the application will only check for errors and alert you to missing requirements. If the application is complete, you must hit SUBMIT. After successful submission, your application will now be listed under the IN PROGRESS tab with the status SUBMITTED.

  23. Is there a confirmation email when I submit my application?plus--large

    A confirmation email is sent upon submission. Please contact proposalCENTRAL customer support, pcsupport@altum.com, if you have submitted an application and have not received a confirmation email from proposalCENTRAL within ten minutes. Make sure that spam filters allow emails from pcsupport@altum.com. The status of an application can also be checked within the MANAGE PROPOSALS tab in proposalCENTRAL.

  24. Further Informationplus--large

    If you have questions regarding your proposal that are not answered in these FAQs, the Simons Symposia RFA or Application Instructions, please contact the Simons Foundation Division for Mathematics and the Physical Sciences at mps@simonsfoundation.org.

    Download the Simons Symposia FAQ as a PDF here.

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