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The Princeton Environmental Institute and the Andlinger Center for Energy and the Environment Announce a Joint Call for Proposals for Innovative Research, Teaching, and Mentorship in Energy and the Environment

The Princeton Environmental Institute (PEI) and the Andlinger Center for Energy and the Environment (ACEE) are pleased to announce a joint call for proposals. The goal is to encourage research, teaching, and mentorship that will advance the world’s understanding of important problems in energy and the environment, encourage faculty development, increase Princeton’s institutional capabilities, and enhance the undergraduate experience. The area of activity within energy and the environment is not constrained; proposals may focus, for example, on climate science, energy, health, land and water use, bioenergy, urban issues, and international issues related to energy and the environment.

Several awards will be made at levels up to a total of $150,000 to be spent over a one or two year period.

Criteria for Selection:

Individual proposals could be funded either by PEI, by ACEE, or by both, depending on how they meet PEI’s and/or ACEE’s research missions and funding criteria.

Successful proposals should address some of the criteria below, but are not expected to address all of them:

  • Allow faculty and senior research staff to move into a new area of research or to pursue novel projects that are not ready for conventional funding sources;
  • Promote collaborations between two or more investigators from different academic disciplines, including but not limited to collaborations enabling work at intersections involving the social sciences or the humanities, and collaborations with GFDL or PPPL and;
  • Have the potential to leverage seed money to attract larger extramural grants.

Half of the available funds are restricted to support proposals that explicitly enhance the undergraduate experience. Appropriate enhancements, for example, might involve the development of new courses or the modification of existing courses in the area of energy and the environment and/or the provision of experiential immersion experiences for undergraduate students during one or more college years.

Faculty who have received support in the past from either PEI or ACEE are not excluded, as long as there are no progress/final reports outstanding. However, all aspects being equal, a currently funded PI would have a lower priority.

Proposal submissions should be limited to one as PI, with at most a second submission as Co-PI.

Proposals should be submitted using the online application form, should be no more than four pages in length, and should include the following:

  • A project abstract or summary statement (not to exceed 200 words);
  • A description of the research element including how the proposed venture relates to the energy and environment theme and how advances realized by the research might contribute to possible solutions;
  • A narrative that describes the significance of the research in the context of competing research in relevant disciplines, research objectives, and milestones, and, where applicable, how the seed money will be leveraged to draw in larger sponsored research grants;
  • A description of teaching and mentoring elements that the faculty members will create, such as specific internships and/or opportunities for independent study and courses that will be developed or significantly modified;
  • A project budget and justification. Project budgets may include but are not limited to expenses related to course development; intensive undergraduate mentoring; research materials and supplies; travel; and support of graduate students, postdoctoral researchers, research assistants, and visiting collaborators. A maximum cumulative (for all PIs and/or senior personnel) of one-month summer salary per year is allowable.
  • A list of current and pending support for all PIs and/or senior personnel that clearly indicates how the proposed effort is distinct from earlier or ongoing funding to the investigators involved.

Questions about the call for proposals should be directed to

The participating PEI unit is its Climate and Energy Challenge (CEC), one of three long-term research and teaching cooperatives currently being supported by PEI as part of the Grand Challenges program – a campus-wide initiative that was launched in 2007 to address complex global environmental challenges including scientific, technological, and policy dimensions. A critical component of the Grand Challenges program is the integration of research with innovative undergraduate research supervision and undergraduate teaching. A commitment to mentoring undergraduates as interns in the summer months or on independent projects is encouraged. Separate funding is available to support internship stipends and will be incremental to faculty awards made as an outcome of this call for proposal. To be eligible for CEC support under this call, research proposals must address the integration of research and teaching missions.

Funding for this call for proposals provided by ACEE will be provided primarily by: the Andlinger Innovation Fund, which is made possible by the generosity and vision of Gerhard R. Andlinger ’52 and enables faculty members to pursue research in new areas; encourages collaboration among Princeton scientists, engineers, and industry; and allows for the purchase of equipment; the Addy / ISN North American Low Carbon Emission Energy Self-Sufficiency Fund, which has been made possible by the generosity and vision of Lydia and William Addy ’82 P14 and provides term funding for innovative research aimed at reducing carbon emissions and creating an energy self-sufficient North America. Other ACEE funds that may be accessed depending on the awarded research topics may include the de Carvahlo-Heineken Family Fund for Environmental Studies, the Renee and Mark F. Rockefeller ‘89 Fund for the Environment and the Parallax Fund for Energy and the Environment, among others.

The deadline for written proposals is Friday, March 20, 2015. A faculty committee with relevant expertise will review the proposals, and awards will be made by the end of April.