Convergent Chemistry Communities Grant

Grant at a Glance

TypeGrant
AmountUp to $30,000 for activities occurring no more than two years after receiving the grant.
DeadlineSeptember 30, 2022
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Purpose

Convergent Chemistry Communities (CCCs) are being piloted as a new platform for enabling Divisions and Members to come together and collaborate on topics of mutual interest that are best explored in a multi-disciplinary fashion and that are not adequately addressed by existing Divisional activities or other funding mechanisms. It is desirable that CCCs can help ACS respond rapidly to new or emerging science and technology themes by offering interested Divisions and Members a novel mechanism for establishing communities of convergent interest to explore these multidisciplinary topics.

We seek proposals that:

  1. Identify an important new or emerging focus area and/or highly multidisciplinary topic, and
  2. Establish new collaborative interactions involving multiple Divisions.

A primary goal of the CCC is to coalesce interest and activities around an exciting science area that demands the focused attention of the ACS.

Examples of CCCs Funded to Date via Phase I Pilot Program

  • Sustainable Polymers: A Multidisciplinary Challenge
  • Open-Source Software in Chemistry

Eligibility

At least two ACS Divisions must agree to form a CCC. Only one division can be designated to receive the funds initially. The receiving division may forward to other participating divisions part(s) of the fund to cover agreed expenditures.  In such a case, it is strongly recommended that participating divisions have a mutual agreement outlining funding allocation and each divisions financial responsibilities.

Application Requirements

The CCC application form requires applicants to submit the following items:

  • A signed letter of support from the current Division Chair of the lead Division, or other executive committee member, if the Chair is the applicant. (Acceptable formats: .pdf, .doc or .docx)
  • Signed letters of support for the proposed CCC from co-sponsoring Divisions or other included groups. (Acceptable formats: .pdf, .doc or .docx)
  • Answers to the following short essay questions, scored using the CCC Rubric:
  1. What is the topic of the proposed CCC, why this topic and why now? (2000 characters) [20%]

  2. Describe proposed activities and their novelty, including how the CCC would enable a community within ACS that is not being adequately represented by the existing ACS organizational structure; identify who the CCC members will be and include a plan for how CCC members will work together to form the community. Reference alignment with ACS strategic goals. (3000 characters) [30%]

  3. Describe the metrics-for-success. (2000 characters) [20%]

  4. What is the expected lifetime of the proposed community? What is the plan to sustain or extend the community beyond this funding period? (1500 characters) [15%]

  5. Logistics. (1500 chracters) [15%]
    1. (i) Identify partner Divisions, including names of Division Points of Contact
    2. (ii) Describe the leadership plan for the community and connect this to the proposed activities discussed in (2)
    3. (iii) Briefly outline the plan for communication/coordination between Divisions
    4. (iv) Describe plan for ensuring diversity and inclusivity in the new CCC
    5. (v) Upload a detailed budget and spending plan

What is Required After an Award?

  • Brief Interim Status Report including an update of expenditures against the proposed spending plan within six months of receiving funds, as well as at 12 and 18 months. Given that this is a pilot program, DAC might reach out with questions or ask for assistance in order to promote and shape the future of the CCC pilot.
  • Funds awarded must be used to support the proposed effort and be expended within two years.
  • A final report describing the use of funds and planned future activities to sustain the community must be submitted within three months after expending the funds.

What Will Not be Funded?

  • Honoraria, cash awards, or endowments
  • Events or projects occurring prior to the funding decision being made
  • Continuing a well-established program, project or existing community
  • Travel and registration requests to non-ACS meetings

Review Cycle

The DAC Strategies, Operations and Program Enhancement subcommittee will review applications received by September 30.  Funding decisions will be announced in late November.


Additional Information

Full CCC Pilot Program Description

To remain relevant far into the 21st Century and beyond, it is imperative that the ACS be agile and responsive in the face of the changing needs of professionals engaged in the chemical enterprise. As societal and economic drivers push traditional chemistry and chemical engineering fields into new specialized focus areas, or the opposite, into highly multidisciplinary topics, the benefits perceived by ACS Members will necessarily depend on the Society’s engagement with these non-traditional areas.

Convergent Chemistry Communities (CCCs) are being piloted as a new platform for enabling Divisions—and Members—to come together and collaborate on topics of mutual interest that are best explored in a multi-disciplinary fashion and that are not adequately addressed by existing Divisional activities or other funding mechanisms. In this way, it is hoped that CCCs can help ACS respond rapidly to new or emerging science and technology themes by offering interested Divisions and Members a novel mechanism for establishing (or exploring) new, emerging, and/or multidisciplinary topics. Within the CCC structure, collaborating Divisions and affiliated Members are expected to engage in cooperative activities that go beyond co-programming, including workshops, discussion groups, panel discussions, CCC-specific websites and databases, etc.

In a phase II pilot program, we seek proposals that: (1) identify an important new or emerging focus area and (2) establish new collaborative interactions involving multiple Divisions.

A primary goal of the CCC is to coalesce interest and activities around an exciting science area that demands the focused attention of the ACS. Coordination of collaborative programming is a key activity that can drive interest around an identified topic (while also serving to minimize duplication and dilution in uncoordinated programming), but CCC proposers should think more broadly and consider other community-building/supporting activities. Additionally, successful submissions via this and the phase I call are serving as prototype tests for the CCC concept; they will necessarily be shepherded by the leadership of the collaborating Divisions, but it is possible, and even encouraged, that Divisions look beyond their current membership. Ideally, they will explore how coalescing a topical area around a CCC could attract and engage new membership to ACS and each of the collaborating Divisions.

Phase II Process:

  • Funding Phase II: Requests up to $30k are available for executing CCC activities over 1-2 years; the level of funding will be dependent on the relative merits of submission as they relate to the rubric.
  • CCC proposals will include multiple parts according to the CCC rubric
  • Divisions in a CCC are strongly advised to enter into cooperative co-sponsorship/memorandum of understanding agreements

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