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Important information and revision notes:

  • Preliminary Proposals are required only for Planning Grants and Planning Grant waivers.
  • A Planning Grant has a duration of up to 12 months and the award size has been increased from $15,000 to $20,000.
  • IUCRCs funded under this solicitation are eligible to apply for two five-year Phases of funding. Active Phase II Centers funded under prior solicitations have the option of competing for a Phase III award. The new Phase II funding model will consist of two designations based on membership participation and funding levels: Phase II and Phase II-Plus (denoted II+). Phase II+ provides a higher level of NSF support with a proportionately higher level of industry membership. 
  • Multi-site Centers will consist of a Lead Site and Partner Sites, requiring centralized coordination, management, and operations by the Lead Site.    
  • For multi-site Centers, a financial plan and a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between all Sites is required for how Center operations are funded at the Lead Site.  
  • There are two levels of Center membership allowed under this solicitation – Full Members and Associate Members. 
  • Companies of all sizes/types (large and small businesses, startups, for-profit and non-profit entities) are encouraged to participate as Members, as are government agencies (federal, state and local). 

For NSF Directorates with topic-specific portfolios i.e., Geosciences (GEO); Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences (SBE), IUCRCs will be considered only on topics of interest distributed via Dear Colleague Letters. Please check the NSF website or call the cognizant Program Director in GEO or SBE.


The Industry–University Cooperative Research Centers (IUCRC) program accelerates the impact of basic research through close relationships between industry innovators, world-class academic teams, and government leaders. IUCRCs are designed to help corporate partners and government agencies connect directly and efficiently with university researchers to achieve three primary objectives:

  • Conduct high-impact research to meet shared industrial needs in companies of all sizes;
  • Enhance U.S. global leadership in driving innovative technology development, and;
  • Identify, mentor and develop a diverse high-tech, exceptionally skilled workforce.

Frequently Asked Questions

Read this official NSF document to learn more about the program and process for applying.


Program Guidelines

A revised version of the NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG) (NSF 19-1), is effective for proposals submitted, or due, on or after February 25, 2019. Please be advised that, depending on the specified due date, the guidelines contained in NSF 19-1 may apply to proposals submitted in response to this funding opportunity.

Funding for New Centers

Site proposals to plan or create or join an IUCRC

Eligibility requirements, program guidelines, and proposal submission instructions can be found in the IUCRC Program Solicitation.

Dear Colleague Letters (DCLs)

Learn about additional NSF funding opportunities.

Funding for Existing Centers

A Center may advance its training and education mission via supplemental funding opportunities. All requests should be discussed and approved for submission with the cognizant Program Director of the award. However, not all NSF Directorates support all supplement types. Available supplements include:

Non-Academic Research Internships for Graduate Students (INTERN)

Support graduate students in research in non-academic settings, including company and government laboratories, to enhance student career potential and provide work experience outside of academia; up to $55,000.

Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU)

Support undergraduate student involvement in research; up to $8,000.

Research Experiences for Teachers (RET)

Support research participation by K-12 teachers and community college instructors; up to $10,000 

Veterans Research Supplement (VRS)

Support research participation by undergraduate or graduate students, K-12 STEM teachers, or community college instructors and students who have served in active duty with the U.S. armed forces; up to $10,000.

Center Resources



The Center Membership Agreement provides the framework for IUCRC operation as a vibrant research cooperative.

The Office of Sponsored research (SRO) in charge of the IUCRC Grants must track executed IUCRC membership agreements and provide the PIs with the membership certification for the award reporting period; and this document must be included as part of the annual report.

The Office of Sponsored research (SRO) in charge of the IUCRC Grants must track cost-sharing requirements by filing the cost-sharing notification according to the actual membership received.

Instructions for calculating cost recovery estimates.

Instructions for preparing and submitting IAA Requests.

Solicitation/Contract/Order for Commercial Items.

Industry/University Cooperative Research Center (IUCRC) NSF IUCRC Governance Requirements

Resources for Center Personnel.

Instructions for how to complete annual reports

Instruction on the planning grant process, IUCRC boot camp, and the planning grant workshop.

Typical Planning Grant Workshop Agenda for a Multi-University IUCRC

Typical Planning Grant Workshop Agenda for a Multi-University IUCRC

Typical Planning Grant Workshop Agenda for a Multi-University IUCRC.

Used to summarize proposed projects. Ideally, these are shared with the IAB members in advance of an IAB meeting

Annual and Final Cost Share Notification by Recipient