The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has announced a $37 million fund to boost research capacity in 44 historically underrepresented institutions in its Office of Science portfolio.
What’s it for: The fund will be used to build research capacity, infrastructure and expertise. Known as the Funding for Accelerated, Inclusive Research (FAIR), the initiative will support “mutually beneficial relationships” between awardees and partnering institutions to perform basic research in applied mathematics, biology, chemistry, computer science, engineering, geoscience, isotope research, materials science and physics.
Who’s getting funded: The initiative will fund 52 projects from 44 institutions. Of those institutions, 43 are emerging research institutions and 25 are minority-serving institutions (MSIs). Included in those MSIs are eight Hispanic-serving institutions (HSIs), six historically Black colleges and universities, two Asian American and Pacific Islander-serving institutions (AANAPISIs) and one tribal college and university. Eight are both HSIs and AANAPISIs.
The big picture: The fund is expected to expand the department’s talent pool. The projects, which are each expected to last up to three years, involve a diverse range of topics and are selected via a scientific peer review under the DOE FAIR Funding Opportunity Announcement.
Energy Secretary Jennifer M. Granholm said in a statement:
FAIR is an essential capacity-building initiative that will broaden the impact of DOE and the Office of Science in tackling critical and pressing scientific questions and challenges. To reach our scientific goals, we need all voices represented at the table, including those who have been historically excluded from critical scientific conversations. This funding will help academic institutions expand their research portfolios and spur future scientific discovery, creating a top-notch workforce to advance American competitiveness.